Action scenes in ‘The Green Hornet’ terrified comedian Seth Rogen

By Robin Bansal, IANS
Monday, January 10, 2011

NEW DELHI - Wondering what Hollywood funnyman Seth Rogen is doing in a pine coloured suit, escaping blown up cars and engaging in physical combat? He has now turned a masked crime fighter in “The Green Hornet”. And he didn’t quite have the last laugh filming the action scenes.

“We tried to film as much of it practically as possible. We tried to use as few visual effects as possible. So there’s a lot of cars crashing through buildings and explosions and stuff, and I just had to try to not look as terrified as I was for the most part,” Rogen told IANS in an e-mail interview from Los Angeles.

“In the action scenes, what you have to be most conscious of is not getting blown up or run over by a car. It can be dangerous,” added the funny man, who now wants to own “cars that would shoot missiles” like the one in the movie.

Directed by Michel Gondry, the outing is based on the character of the same name that originated in a 1930s radio programme and appeared in movie serials, a TV series, comic books and other media.

Rogen, who has co-written the screenplay with Evan Goldberg, had to ensure the movie is contemporary and not classic.

“We didn’t want to let the material hold us back in any way. So we kind of took the parts that we thought were relevant and awesome and left some of the ideas that we didn’t think would translate that well to a modern world and a modern audience,” said the Canadian, who lost oodles of weight for the role.

“We didn’t want to put stuff in the movie that people who had never heard of ‘The Green Hornet’ would watch and think, ‘Oh, that must be something from the TV show that I don’t know about’.

“But that being said, some of the fun of writing it was trying to include as much of the stuff from the old version of ‘The Green Hornet’ as possible but making it organic,” he added.

Releasing worldwide Friday, it has been distributed by Columbia Pictures. Starring Jay Chou, Christoph Waltz and Cameron Diaz in supporting roles, it is releasing in India in English, Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.

Known for his deadpan humour, Rogen got his start in show business at age 13 as a stand-up comedian. Not stopping there, he became an award winning writer with credits that includes the likes of “Undeclared” and “Da Ali G Show” on the small screen, and movies like “Superbad” and “Drillbit Taylor”.

As for the big screen, he has unforgettable performances in outings like “You, Me and Dupree”, “The 40-Year-Old Virgin”, “Knocked Up”, “Pineapple Express” and “Funny People”.

Asked if the 28-year-old was apprehensive audiences would expect comedy out of his superhero character too, Rogen said: “We were aware what people would think going into it and we tried to write the movie accordingly. I think in the first five minutes of the movie, you see that the character is probably grossly different from you think he is.”

“Watching someone like Brad Pitt become a superhero isn’t that interesting, ’cause he’s pretty much starting out as one’. But watching someone who is not like that become one is a far more interesting journey,” added the funny man-turned-superhero, who is a self-confessed Batman fan.

His future projects include “Jay and Seth vs The Apocalypse” and “Live With It” and voiceovers for “Paul” and “Kung Fu Panda 2: The Kaboom of Doom”.

Rogen doesn’t deny chances of a sequel to “The Green Hornet” too.

“We were very aware that if this movie went well, it could potentially be one of those types of movies that you see more than one of. And we came up with a lot of ideas as to where we could potentially take it, should that happen. We would have been nave to have not,” he said.

(Robin Bansal can be contacted at

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