Talking Parenting With Alec Baldwin

 

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When I was invited to Comic-Con to interview Justin Timberlake and Anna Kendrick for the upcoming movie Trolls, I was told there would also be a “surprise.” What possibly could it be?! Turns out it was an extended clip of the new movie Boss Baby that will be in theaters nationwide in March 31, 2017 and starring Alec Baldwin… and I got to meet and interview Alec Baldwin! …And Director Tom McGrath and Producer Ramsey Ann Naito joined the interview as well after doing a panel for a larger audience.

Having an animated baby voiced by Alex Baldwin is hilarious and I’m excited to see the movie about a newborn coming into the family and how inevitably that child takes over the household, aka becomes the boss. Naturally, this brought up our own kids in conversation. In fact while speaking of our kids, I noted:

I’ve got some you can borrow.

Alec Baldwin: How many do you have?

Five.

Alec Baldwin: We need to have a special screening for you.

Did you know what your character was going to look like? The baby?

TheBossBaby-TeaserPosterAlec Baldwin: No. No, no, no, no, no. When you do these things, you just have to think about how you fit into the whole thing. Like the ones that write tone and how the goal was to make it funny and sweet, and you want to not go too far and make it too cranky or too much of anything. And when you work with the right people, it just kind of reveals itself what you should do. It becomes pretty obvious how you need to play it.

 Do you ever make yourself laugh? I know that you inserted a lot of your own lines that you mentioned in the panel. Do you ever just say something that comes out and just, you crack yourself up?

Tom McGrath: He cracks me up more.

Ramsey Ann Naito: A lot.

Tom McGrath: I have to be careful not to blow the tapes, because I think I’ve stepped on a couple.
Have to have him do it again.

Alec Baldwin: I think Senior Bacon was our favorite.

Ramsey Ann Naito: It’s not in the movie.

Alec Baldwin: But we had a little crazy, really zany little riff of where my character was provoking my brother.

Tom McGrath: Yes, part of this whole like, you know, love is infinite and the theme of the movie is these two brothers believe that love is finite. The Boss Baby works with this company, Baby Co., that has this pie chart of love and he gets the most love. there’s a really playful scene where he’s trying to figure out why the puppies are getting all the love and he’s interrogating a puppy, very playfully. And he was teasing it with bacon, and so Alec was doing all these things about wearing it as a mustache.

Alec Baldwin: Holding up the bacon, going, “I am Senior Bacon.” Super nonsense but it was fun.

Ramsey Ann Naito: We have to find a place for that somewhere. We come up with a lot of offensive ideas. Every day. Every session, we got so much stuff we can’t use. It’s good stuff. It’s funny.

Tom McGrath: It’s true.

Alec Baldwin: And then we look at each other and we have that look where we sigh and go, “Too bad we can’t use that.”

Ramsey Ann Naito: But it really is a beautiful message, what Tom is highlighting here, which is that love is infinite. It was what drew me, personally, to the film, being a mother of two kids that are basically Boss Baby. My son was seven when my second son arrived and he was very jealous, and he definitely thought he was going to get loved less, which is not true.
And so, and this movie is about two brothers learning to love one another, and as a mother, when I read the script, I was like, “Oh, my gosh. This is exactly what I hoped for for my kids. That they will learn to love each other unconditionally.”

 Yes, I was curious about that, because obviously, as a mom too, that’s what appealed to me. I thought of my own kids, but I know for you, you mentioned more of siblings in your own lives that was based on that, or your two brothers that you mentioned in the panel. But yes, no, I was just curious, is it more about you and your siblings or just universal for both, if that makes sense?

Tom McGrath: I think it’s all of those things, in a way. Ramsey’s a great partner for me, because I, unfortunately, don’t have children.

Ramsey Ann Naito: But also I think that a really wonderful thing about animation is that it’s so collaborative, and so while Alec was the first pick for who we wanted to play Boss Baby over the course of two-and-a-half years, we’ve been collaborating. There were things that were developed and identified throughout the process.

And it was just, it was so fun. I have to say it was definitely – Alec is so generous with being able to find all the little idiosyncratic aspects of our little Boss Baby. And I think it’s probably also because he has quite a few children now. So he had some good reference.

Alec Baldwin: If I’m not careful. My poor wife.

Number four was twins, so Yes.

Alec Baldwin: Oh my gosh. That’s incredible. I think that whenever people ask you to do a job, 99 percent of the time it’s who’s doing the asking. Some people will come to you and say, “Do you want to do a movie?” And even though it sounds like a worthy idea, you ask yourself, “Do I want to do that with them? How capable are they of achieving what they want to achieve?”

Why do we have to wait until March [to see the full film]?

Tom McGrath: We’re still working on it a little bit. And Boss Baby is so work driven and he’s never experienced a family. And it’s about choice of, is work more important than my family that I love? And again, not to give anything away, I think you know the choice would be family.

Alec Baldwin: When you’re having kids, again, my daughter’s going to be three in August, and our son just turned one in June. And we’re having another one in September, and choosing family over work has kind of become a bit of a theme, or a real theme in my life. And my agent will call me and say, “Bob so-and-so called. Here we go. We’re going to go make a movie with Bob so-and-so or Tom so-and-so or Susan so-and-so.”

And I’ll say, “I’m not going to work. I’m going to stay home.” Because I gave my wife my word that when she’s pregnant, I’m there for that last trimester. I don’t travel, except on an as-needed basis. And my agent is like, “You’re kidding me.” And I say, “I can’t.” Or people will call me and I’ll say, “I can’t go.”

Every week, I write something to each of my kids in the book about, “Today, you did this,” and, “Today, you did that.” It was an idea someone gave me. And with my daughter, Carmen, I wrote, “I don’t even know where to begin. You did three things yesterday that I,” and we have to stop that addiction. My wife and I have gotten really smarter about letting it just happen in real life and not having to video every moment of the child.

My son is like – the nanny or the housekeep or whoever we have in our life, this kid just gets shined and waxed all day long. And kiss him and put cream on him. No, it’s just like, it’s unbelievable this kid. But that’s a good thing. I mean my kids are, as I’m sure you feel about your kids, you can never give them enough love and attention.

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About The Boss Baby
DreamWorks Animation and the director of Madagascar invite you to meet a most unusual baby. He wears a suit, speaks with the voice and wit of Alec Baldwin, and stars in the animated comedy, DreamWorks’ The Boss Baby. The Boss Baby is a hilariously universal story about how a new baby’s arrival impacts a family, told from the point of view of a delightfully unreliable narrator, a wildly imaginative 7 year old named Tim. With a sly, heart-filled message about the importance of family, DreamWorks’ The Boss Baby is an authentic and broadly appealing original comedy for all ages.

Starring: Alec Baldwin, Steve Buscemi, Jimmy Kimmel, Lisa Kudrow, Patton Oswalt, Miles Bakshi
Directed By: Tom McGrath
Written By: Michael McCullers (based on the award-winning picture book by Marla Frazee)
Produced By: Ramsey Ann Naito
Release Date: March 31, 2017

Official Websites – #TheBossBaby
http://www.dreamworks.com/thebossbaby/
https://www.facebook.com/thebossbaby/

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