Whooping it up in RIO

 

Jamie Foxx channels his inner bird

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By Micaela Hood

Meeting Jamie Foxx was an animated experience. Instead of the standard run-of-the-mill interview, the Oscar winner kept reporters entertained with funny jokes and lively demeanor a suite inside the W South Beach to promote his new movie, Rio.

This time, the actor asked the questions — and tricked reporters into playing a game that taught us a thing or two about ourselves. With questions such as “Describe your ideal vase? What’s in it?” and “You’re on a boat — do you see land near or only water?”, he had everyone in the suite wondering what was next. His lightheartedness, of course, is what makes him such a charmer. In Rio, which opens Friday, Foxx plays Nico, a “fun and flighty” bird, whose comparable style is uncannily like the star’s: “We’re both about love and romance and see the glass half full.”

The movie also stars Anne Hathaway, Jesse Eisenberg, George Lopez and will.i.am, who plays Foxx’s sidekick in the movie. “It was a little weird at first,’’ Foxx says of his animated role. “I’m used to acting with my body and face.” During filming, Foxx learned to enjoy relying on his voice instead of facial expressions. And the job beat working 12 hour days. “It was pretty simple. I’d show up for a few hours, wear what I wanted, and then go home.” Overall, he says the experience was “mind-blowing,” how “they would take your voice and put in onscreen.” He also got a free trip to Rio de Janeiro. “You see, a lot of women don’t want you to go to Rio … it’s the most beautiful place in the world for a lot of reasons.”

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