Elijah Wood Interview
We quiz the Lord of the Rings actor Elijah Wood on new movie ‘Tron Uprising’…
How does it feel to play an animated character in TRON: Uprising?
It feels really cool! My character is a guy called Beck and I think he’s awesome. It’s fun to play someone so heroic.
How would you describe Beck?
In the beginning, Beck is a pretty average individual. He’s a great mechanic, but that’s about it. Until he decides to become a rebellious renegade!
Where does Tron fit into the story?
Tron is a character who is a mentor to Beck. He’s a teacher and a guide in Beck’s evolution. He wants to teach Beck to become a hero. But it’s not as easy as you might expect. Sometimes Beck gets it wrong and he’s not always successful.
What did you think of the look of your character when you saw him animated for the first time?
I saw rough drawings of my character when I first signed up for the role. He looked really cool. I was also shown some test animations that blew me away. But the thing I remember the most are the drawings of the amazing vehicles in the TRON universe.
“I’m sure there’s some crazy footage of me looking like an idiot”
What crazy vehicles can you tell us about?
Well, we all know the light cycles from TRON. They are definitely back and they are definitely cool. When I first stepped into the recording booth, I saw loads of pictures of the new vehicles to help my head get into the world of TRON. But you’ll have to wait until you see them on the show because I don’t want to give anything away.
How much do you enjoy voiceover work?
Voiceover work is fun! I’m no stranger to doing voice work for animations, so I’m used to it now. But it’s always interesting to imagine these crazy worlds inside your head. My character in TRON: Uprising is a lot of fun to play because he’s very active. I don’t just stand there in front of the microphone. I get physical and jump about. I’ll punch and kick the air.
Do you act out your scenes in the recording booth?
It helps to move around when you have to make the noises from the scenes where your character is being physical. They video record you in the sound booth, too. So I’m sure there’s some crazy footage of me looking like an idiot as I act out the scenes. I’m sure it’s pretty hilarious!
Did you have a tough time imagining the futuristic world of TRON inside your head?
It takes a while to get into character when you step into the sound booth because this world is very different to the world we live in. However, all of these concept pictures and drawings really help you get into the zone. I’d close my eyes and immerse myself in the world. That helped a lot.
“It’s very common to work alone when you are a voice in an animation”
Are you in the sound booth alone, or do you have other actors in there with you?
Most of the time I was alone in the sound booth. But I did work with some of the actors for a couple of the sessions. I worked with Mandy Moore [who plays Mia in the show] a couple of times, as well as Emmanuelle Chriqui [who plays Paige]. It makes a huge difference when you’re in there with somebody else because you’ve got someone to interact with.
Why don’t you work with the other actors very often?
To be honest, it’s very common to work alone when you are a voice in an animation. You don’t often get a chance to record with the other actors who are playing the characters, mainly due to the fact that you don’t have to. They just slot all the voices together on a computer. Plus, the actors’ schedules are all over the place. It’s difficult to get everyone in the same room at the same time.
What was it like to work with Mandy Moore in the sound booth?
It was wonderful to work with Mandy. She’s awesome. Our characters on the show have a great rapport. So it was really helpful to have us in the booth at the same time. It was also fun to work with Emmanuelle.
“The writing is amazing”
How lonely does it get in the sound booth when you’re all alone?
Voice work is an incredibly solitary journey. You stand in front of a microphone and you pretend to interact to characters that aren’t there. It’s a big challenge to breathe life into the scenes because you have to imagine everything in your mind. That’s why it was so cool to have other actors in there with me. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to do that too much – but it was cool when it did happen.
What do you like the most about your exciting new show?
I love everything about TRON: Uprising. The storytelling is really good. The writing is amazing. I’m really impressed by how true we stick to the world of TRON. Oh, and I love its animation style.
“It’s exceeded all of my expectations”
How would you describe the animation style?
The animation style is very cinematic. It’s awesome. In fact, it’s exceeded all of my expectations. Seeing the show play out is so beautiful. It’s such a unique look – and I love how angular the characters are. There’s something really special about the way it’s all been designed.
What else has impressed you about the show?
The music is also amazing! Daft Punk created the music in TRON: Legacy and we’ve got a very similar sound in TRON: Uprising. I love that. Oh, it’s really exciting to be part of something so fantastic! I’m really excited for people to see it – and I can’t wait to see more of it myself. I’ve seen little pieces here and there, but I’m really looking forward to sitting down and watching all of them on TV. I can’t wait!
TRON: Uprising premieres on Disney XD on 10th September