Emmanuel Itier: This is your first time in an animated movie. Obviously the techniques are different, but what did you notice specifically about your approach to an animated film versus live action?
Anna Kendrick: I actually found the process of recording just a voice surprisingly liberating. I thought it would be a hindrance to not have my face and my body to put things across. But actually I had much less problem really going for things and embarrassing myself. I found that to be really quite freeing – that it really only helped the finished product to just kind of let go and know that you looked really foolish. But then it did not matter because no one was going to see it.
EI: There are so many sides to ParaNorman that set it apart from other animated movies. What was the main attraction for you to get involved with this project?
AK: To be perfectly honest, I really did want to do an animated film. I have always wanted to. I was ready to just kind of pounce on the opportunity when it came up. Then, it turned out to be this really kind of special project that it is stop-motion.
Also, just that it is funny, and scary. It has all this heart. I don’t even really think of it as a horror movie. I think of it as kind of an adventure movie. Because I love when this group of kids kind of has to band together and save the proverbial day. Those were my favorite kind of movies when I was a kid; Those, ‘kids on an adventure movies’…
EI: That humor and heart all ties in together with Norman’s story. Were there any themes that stood out in particular to you?
AK: Yeah, I mean, I was actually surprised when I saw the finished film. How much of it is really about family. The way that it all kind of wraps up, and the way that the family has to kind of rally around the black sheep of the family I think is really lovely. That was certainly in the script. But when I saw the finished film, that theme really resonates, I think.
EI: Fans had been counting down the days until ParaNorman’s release. What do you think it is about this particular style of animation that resonates so much with its audience?
AK: I feel like when you look at stop-motion you can just feel the love that these animators have for the characters. They kind of lived with them for so long. I know that is true of traditional animation as well. But, it is…
…They are a very strange, very lovable and geeky group of people who are so passionate about this particular art form. I feel like it really comes across how much love they put into these inanimate objects. How they think of them as characters with the life of their own and not just objects.