Son of the Mask is a sequel, not a remake, of the 1994 hit comedy, The Mask. This time around, the mask ends up in the hands of cartoonist Tim Avery (Kennedy) who dons the mask, makes love to his wife, and nine months later a son with amazing powers is born. Throw in a jealous dog and Alan Cumming as Loki (the masks real owner), loads of special effects, and youve got New Line Cinemas Son of the Mask, written by Lance Khazei and directed by Lawrence Guterman (Cats and Dogs).
Ive always found Jamie Kennedy to be a good interview. Hes an easygoing guy who can make me laugh, even when its obvious hes worn out from a grueling publicity tour schedule. This interview was no exception. From the back of a car traveling around New York on his way to yet another interview, Kennedy spoke to me about taking on the character, working with a baby and a dog, and how hes done what he can to let people know hes not trying to imitate Jim Carreys role in the original movie, The Mask.
INTERVIEW WITH JAMIE KENNEDY:
This isnt a remake and the original came out so long ago, yet obviously theyll be a lot of comparisons to Jim Carreys The Mask. What can you say to make people realize this is a whole separate film?
Well to be honest, Im over it. Youve got me in a really vulnerable time and Im being totally honest. So many people have compared me and said so many things about me and Jim Carrey. I was never trying to be Jim Carrey. I totally thought he was amazing and respect what he does. But the critics dont know all the things that go into the film. Its just like I tell them its a different movie, its a different character. Its not trying to be the first. And its just like hurts my feelings that theyre so rough. They dont even know what happened and how many things go beyond the making of this movie. Jim Carreys brilliant and were trying to do something different. I dont even play his part. I play a straight-man.
When I did my show, people on the street really liked it. But critics were like, Candid Camera for the Gen-Y set. They dont get it. With Malibus Most Wanted, guys from Ohio old white guys were reviewing it going, Jamie Kennedy cant even speak the language ferschizzle. You know what I mean? They dont understand. All I can do is put on my armor and brace for the arrows.
I dont know how you do it, how you brace for attacks.
I dont know either. (Laughing) Im vulnerable.
Son of the Mask isnt a remake and doesnt even have that much to do with the original, other than the obvious green mask connection.
I wish you would tell that to every critic, especially this one guy in Utah And theres only so much say I have. I try to have a lot of say but this is a big movie and I can only get so much in, you know? Theres a lot of people that are pulling the strings.
Does doing this movie, starring in a sequel to a movie that people really enjoyed, totally sour you from ever doing another type of project like this again?
Yes. You got me right after a batch of bad interviews so Im going to be honest with you about this. It does because Im just being killed, absolutely killed. The only thing I can hope for with this movie is that young kids find it and like it. Everyone else they just compare you. Now I know how Roger Moore must have felt (laughing).
Theres going to be an audience of young teens who have never seen the original.
Yeah, I hope because its a good movie. It stands on its own. Its for a specific audience, young kids, you know? And people are comparing it to Citizen Kane or something. Its about fun and its about family.
It sounds like you might be glad when the interview process is over.
I like doing interviews. I really do. But honestly, doing this movie is an interesting experience because I just came off my show and Malibus Most Wanted where I had a good amount of control. And then in this movie I didnt have any control. I just cant do that. I have to have my voice in there. If I cant, Im just going to be like Im doing someone elses thing. I have to have some of my voice because I have my own experiences that I lived through.
Can you ask for that with future film projects?
I mean I really cant demand it. All I can do is just try to make things independently. Thats the only way you can do it. The only way you can do that is if youre a huge, huge, huge star. Im not there yet. Im just like a working actor.