Sneak peek at Jemaine Clement in Men in Black III
Fri, 04 May 2012 6:37p.m.
By Kate Rodger
The Flight of the Conchords are set to storm stages across New Zealand on their first tour in years, but the dynamic duo aren't content with that.
They've both got burgeoning movie careers and in just a few weeks, Jemaine Clement's Hollywood big hitter Men in Black III opens.
“The first day we put the make-up on it took 8 hours,” says Clemet. “So, before you even start your work day. You've already had what most people think is a work day.”
Clement plays Boris the Animal, chief badass alien in the third Men in Black movie
This is the first eyeful we've had of what he looks like and as the man says, looking this badass takes time.
“I have to get up around 3am and come in half asleep or even completely asleep as they're gluing things and spraying things onto my face.”
Barry Sonnenfeld directed all the Men in Black movies and is a big fan of Clement. The only issue he had was understanding a single word he said.
“He speaks with a very specific New Zealand accent,” says Sonnenfeld. “I literally could not understand a single word he said. So I got him to speak to me only in a British accent, which he can do very well. That way I could understand him.”
This funny accent we New Zealanders have was just all a bit much for Sonnenfeld, but Clement was still his one and only choice for the role.
“I loved him in Flight of the Conchords, although nothing about that said he should be the villain in my movie. I loved him in Dinner For Schmucks, and that was produced by Walter Parks who also produced Men in Black III. He said I should meet Jemaine and I did and I thought he was fantastic. He’s got a phenomenal voice, it’s very deep. He’s very funny and I knew he would be able to bring something extra to the character.
Back in black is Will Smith, joined this time by fellow Oscar nominee Josh Brolin. Brolin also rates Clement as a huge talent, although he did uncover one of his weaknesses.
“He’s amazing,” says Brolin. “He’s great to work with. He is a little afraid of heights though.”
That fear hasn’t stopped Clement's continued ascent up the Hollywood ladder and you can see him leap up this latest rung when Men in Black III hits our cinemas May 24.
Of course, Baker also designed the lead alien: the bad guy, Boris the Animal, played by Jemaine Clement. Baker designed a very badass biker costume, complete with goggles that seem to be embedded deep in Boris’s eye sockets. “I got the chance to make Jemaine into something he really isn’t,” says Baker. “He’s really a very gentle man, but in the costume, he is much more menacing – and, the women on set have told me, sexy.”
“When I first came in, Rick Baker sat me down and asked, ‘Are you claustrophobic?’” Clement recalls, laughing. “He asked me all of these questions – I’m not sure if they were intended to scare me, and they did scare me a little. He also mentioned that a lot of people who do a makeup-effects character only do it once in their careers.” And with good reason: on his first day on set, Clement spent eight hours in the makeup chair (a total that was soon streamlined to three-to-four hours once they established a rhythm).
Opening with a heavy-hitting prison break on the Moon’s Lunar Max prison, we’re introduced to the film’s Big Bad: Boris The Animal (Flight Of The Conchords’ Jemaine Clement). Boris is a lethal Boglodite with a fanged space vagina on the palm of his one remaining hand, where a symbiotic space-weasel dwells, spitting out deadly organic quills like miniature harpoons. Needless to say, creature creator extraordinaire Rick Baker hasn’t lost his knack for memorable monster design. Boris has goggles for eyes, a fondness for biker-chic and a voice deep enough to make your seat vibrate, but the best thing about him is that he isn’t just out to watch the world burn – his reasons for clashing with the MIB are much more personal.
The result is that this threequel is a curiously intimate blockbuster. A thick layer of melancholy blankets the first act as old-school-K reflects on the life he’s lived and his likely fate in this line of business. Boris, you see, only has one arm because K shot the other off, dooming the Boglodite race to extinction in the process. Revenge is at hand though, because Boris is able to erase future-K from existence by killing him in the past, leaving J to pursue the interstellar crim through time itself.
Wow, yeah and NICE.nonchalant obsession wrote:"a voice deep enough to make your seat vibrate...."
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