Kevin Hart: Being a bunny villain is fun
Kevin Hart is excited about his second villain role in The Secret Life Of Pets
US actor Kevin Hart is excited about his second villain role.
His first was in the 2008 Matthew McConaughey-Kate Hudson adventure romance Fool's Gold, in which he played a gangster named Bigg Bunny.
In The Secret Life Of Pets, he voices a bad rabbit and he laughs at the coincidence.
"Coming back to play a bunny in this just shows how life comes full circle," the 37-year-old tells M at the Conrad New York hotel.
His character, Snowball, is the scene-stealing leader of a gang of misbegotten animals who live in the sewers of New York City and hate all humans because they were mistreated by them.
When Snowball rescues two house dogs (voiced by Louis C.K. and Eric Stonestreet) from Animal Control, they are forced to join his gang and pretend to hate humans.
When Snowball finds out the truth about them, all hell breaks loose.
What attracted you to this role?
They showed me a picture of Snowball and he was really cute. It was the most adorable picture I've ever seen. The eyes were, like, very low and innocent and then they turn the page real quickly and Snowball was just angry. He's, like, grabbing his hair, his teeth are out and I started laughing.
Kevin Hart attends the screening of The Secret Life Of Pets in New York. PHOTO: AFP
They said he's the bad guy and I said, "What?!" They said he's responsible for the revolution against the people and we think that your voice will be perfect for it.
I jumped at the opportunity because the whole idea of a white bunny having a militant Black Panther-like attitude of "us against the people" - I thought it was priceless.
How was the voiceover experience for you?
It's fun because your cadences, your mannerisms, they'll all be used for the character. The beauty of playing Snowball was being allowed to add so many levels. On paper, he was just a villain. Me adding the insecurity, the backstory, this was all improv and... something the director allowed me to do.
Did you have any pets growing up?
My first pet wasn't even really my pet. It was my grandma's and it was a dog named Chichi, a pomeranian that hated everybody but somehow took a liking to me.
I remember pomeranians have so much hair that when Chichi would poop, hair would get stuck in the poop. So because I was the only person that Chichi didn't snap at, I was responsible for cutting the poop out of the hair.
Do you have any pets now?
(My wife Eniko Parrish and I) have two dogs. I didn't really want animals in my house, but, you know, women are very good at persuading you to get what they want. I have a doberman pinscher and a miniature pinscher. I've grown to love them.
What I really take out of this movie is you grow attached to your pets because you don't look at them as pets. They're family members. They're a part of your everyday life.
Like, I find myself, when we've left the house for quite a period of time, it's, "oh, we got to get back to check on Roxy and Riggs".
How has your life changed in the last couple of years with your success?
You're gonna find it very hard to believe, but it hasn't. The movies get bigger, the pay stubs get bigger, but... I live my life exactly the same. When I'm off, it's about me and my kids, who are 11 and eight. Taco Tuesdays, there's movie night, it's going to dinner, it's talking about our day...
My kids will be 18 and that's a scary time because that's when they can leave the house and not come back. I want to cherish the time before that comes. Everything else comes second.
Of course, I have my vices. I like cars, I like watches. That's about it.