Simon Pegg: from cult star to action hero

December 8th, 2011

The Carroll News: Can you tell us a little bit about what your motion capture experience was on “The Adventures of Tintin?”


Simon Pegg: It was very new for everybody, even Steven Spielberg because it was his first motion capture film. I think we were all on our first day of school to some degree and it was interesting that every day we were making new discoveries about the technology and about how to perform within it.

It’s different from live action shooting in that you don’t have your real, live sort of props and costumes. You’re working in a very imagined environment.  But you are still acting with other actors and moving around, so it’s different from just doing a voice over. It’s very much a new art form.

It was great fun to feel like we were breaking new ground. I know that Steven [Spielberg] was extremely inspired and energized by the process.

CN: “Tintin” is such a beloved series across the world. What was it like being part of such a beloved story?


SP: I think we all realized what we were taking on with “Tintin.” It’s a beloved story in Europe. It comes from Belgium and was made in France. [Also, it] certainly reached the shores of the U.K. when I was a kid, as I remember it very clearly being a sort of a “Saturday morning serial cartoon.”

Every day we had the whole studio lined with pictures from Herge’s works so we always had the characters in mind.


CN: You’ve done a lot of work with Nick Frost and Edgar Wright in the past.  Are there any current projects that you all are working on?


SP: Yes, Edgar and I are just writing the third film in a series that started with the “Shaun of the Dead” and “Hot Fuzz,” and Nick will be a big part of that. It’s currently entitled “Worlds End” and we’re very excited about it. I feel like those guys are my, you know, they’re my homies and that’s what I’d like to go back to.

CN: Your role in “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol” is quite a bit different from your typical roles.  What did you have to do differently to prepare for it?


SP: At the time of “MI:3,” Benji worked in the research and development department. But since then he’s gone out and taken the field exam and is now sort of working out in the big wide world as an IMF agent. I just thought that was a great idea to see a guy who used to sitting around in the lab coat poking hard drives to actually be out there kicking ass. So the draw of it was just enormous. Also, anytime J.J. [Abrams] calls me I’m like, “What do you want? Where do you need me?” I always know it’s going to be a fun job no matter what it is. But in terms of research, I went undercover in Moscow for several weeks and cracked a ring of nuclear terrorists.