Interview with Genesis Rodriguez and Jamie Chung
After attending the red carpet premiere and seeing Big Hero 6, I couldn’t wait to sit and interview the people responsible for such an awesome movie. We had the opportunity to sit with the directors, attend a drawing demo with Jin Kim, and much more. I was however most excited about my interview with Genesis Rodriguez and Jamie Chung, they voiced Honey Lemon and Go Go Tomago in Big Hero 6. I attended an all expenses paid trip courtesy of Disney and ABC Television.
If you’re seen Big Hero 6 then you probably know why I was so excited about interviewing these ladies. None of the trailers really shows how great both their characters are in this movie. If you haven’t seen it yet then you’re missing out and should make plans to see it ASAP. When the ladies walked in they were so warm and friendly. I had already seen Genesis earlier that morning. We were in the lobby taking photos and she walked in and was taking photos just like us. She even snapped a quick photo with one of the bloggers and herself in front of a Honey Lemon poster. We chatted a little with the ladies and then started the interview.
Question: What was your favorite part about playing the Character that you played?
Jamie Chung: I think the favorite, in particular with this character, Go Go doesn’t say a lot at the beginning of the film. When she does say something, it’s very on point and it’s quite sassy and you know, she was described to me as the female version of Clint Eastwood. And it was just fun to like sass it up, and like literally if I said a line with too much of a smile, the Directors Chris and Don do it, No, No, No, No, No, a little bit meaner. [LAUGHTER]
Genesis Rodriguez: And just for me, it was having to be so positive all the time. Um, I really feel like I was acting a fool and I was getting paid for it. It really is just the biggest blessing to have this cast, warm and loving characters cause you’ll never get to play that kind of part in a live action thing. So um, I, to be honest, I mean, I can speak for the both of us, we’ve been huge Disney fans all of our lives and you know, we’ve been Princesses and I literally would comb my red hair in restaurants as Ariel. It’s like a dream come true to be able to play these strong female characters and bring that down to future generations.
Question: I have a question about Honey Lemon’s Character because she looks Caucasian, right, but then there were moments in the film where she had a Japanese accent to me like especially when she said Hiro, when she said your name, it sounded very Japanese. And I don’t know if it was because the setting was a mix of San Francisco and Japan and I was wondering if there were, if that was, if she had a Japanese background as well.
Genesis Rodriguez: So Honey Lemon is very Latina. That’s her way of putting her latina culture and a little of myself into the character.
I loved hearing her talk to Hiro in the movie it was so endearing and nurturing, you could tell she really loves him and cares about his well-doing greatly. She also shared that latinas are all different, like her mom who’s a blonde with light eyes.
Question: Had you voiced an Animated Character before?
Jamie Chung: Oh nothing on this caliber. You know, once you’ve done a Disney Animation Film, it’s like kind of the top of the top, you know what I mean? You’re good. I did do a cartoon for a different network and it was a half hour, it didn’t work out though and it was cancelled.
Question: Did you like a strong having a strong female movie character?
Jamie Chung: Absolutely, talking further on stereotypes, what I love about this film is that there is no stereotype. You know, it kind of breaks all of those boundaries in terms of you know, being a Nerd, and being not cool, like this is the absolute opposite of that. And in terms of strong female characters, like Honey Lemon and Go Go are so different from each other and yet they both represent strength in its, in their own way. And you know, what Disney’s great about is not like a Cookie Cutter example of like this is a strong woman. It’s, you know, they both come in different shapes and sizes, and different shades and what not, and that’s what I love about this.
Question: A couple of my Readers have asked, when you’re in Studio and you’re doing your voices, is it just, are you very animated while you’re doing it, like everybody’s listening to it in their heads and jumping around or is it very calm when you’re doing it?
Genesis Rodriguez: I heard this story of a famous voice over actor and he prefers to lay down and say all of his lines. I don’t know how that’s possible because if we are moving like literally, I have done the motion and I think Jamie is the same way, like you have to do the motion and get that sound out like it’s weird. I mean, and it’s so hard to do because you have to stay still. But it’s like Nick is nowhere and you’re falling 6 feet and you’re landing on the floor, to make that noise it’s really hard to do. You have to use your imagination but it helps you. I couldn’t not move, I can’t imagine saying my lines like that.
Question: What did you like wear? I know when you talk to some Actors but did you wear heavy shoes to get into these Characters? Did you do something like that?
Genesis Rodriguez: What’s weird is that I did, the audition exactly like Honey Lemon and I hadn’t seen the character at all. I took a very bold fashion choice. I did socks in heels and I did like an undershirt and then a dress over it. And I don’t do that like at all but I wasn’t, I don’t know why I went like that and then I saw Honey Lemon and the way she dressed and then this is freaky. I couldn’t have land it better.
Question: How did you prepare?
Jamie Chung: I think the most important thing is to be unique because once you’re in the room, you can really go and figure out where it’s supposed to be and say OK, you’re onto something and then you kind of go with that role and it’s like a speed bump, you know. So that’s the only thing that you can do and you know, you have to be able to play. You really have to just tap into your inner kid and make that voice, you know.
Question: Did you add your own personality to the characters?
Jamie Chung: I think the interesting thing when you add a voice to it, personality to it because it really does come alive. And if you look at each character and compare them to the person that’s playing them, like they embody that — that character, like Genesis to me is Honey Lemon, you know. It’s, you know, her own personal attributes are what kind of gives this character life, and I think that’s what they did with casting. They wanted the characters to kind of represent the Actors that are playing them.
Genesis said that Jamie’s character Go Go had the best line in the movie which is “Woman Up.”
Question: Other than your characters, who’s your favorite character and not Baymax?
Genesis Rodriguez: Fred is hysterical. What’s funny is that — T.J. is such a great comedian. He’s like totally Fred too.
Jamie Chung: I liked Wasabi. You know, I — I feel like a lot of resemblance with because I’m like very– I’m like looking at these phones and I’m like I want to line them up. [LAUGHTER] He was a worry wart and he cares about his safety and the safety of everyone.
Question: Do you think that doing the movie anyway changed your perspective on certain things? Going forward, does it want you to be better?
Jamie Chung: In terms of like sending the right message, you know, it is a superhero movie but it stresses the importance of education and Science and I love that the message that it sends is that intelligence and smarts is not sex biased, no more is it race biased. You know, everyone’s equal and — and everyone has that same opportunity to reach that, you know milestone in terms of education. So I think it’s cool to part of that and also in terms of 10, 20, 30 years from now, this movie still will be relevant, you know.
Genesis Rodriguez: I was so excited for a movie to talk about Robots and Technology. I was into Robotics too and I’m an official Nerd. To even have a movie that’s making girls want to be in technology and be smart, I hope girls especially will be wanting after this movie, to be the first ones to raise their hands in class and realize that being smart is empowering and I mean, if we got to do that for them like again, we’re so cool, we’re so much, you know. Robotics is cool. Science is cool.
- Interview with Jamie Chung and Genesis Rodriguez of Big Hero 6 – #BigHero6Event (5minutesformom.com)
- Meet GoGo and Honey Lemon from #BigHero6Event (donnahup.com)