‘Family Guy’ creator Seth MacFarlane brings his boundary-pushing brand of humour to the big screen for the first time as writer, director and voice star of ’Ted.’ In the live action/CG-animated comedy, he tells the story of John Bennett (Mark Wahlberg), a grown man who must deal with the cherished teddy bear who came to life as the result of a childhood wish…. and has refused to leave his side ever since. Starring Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, Joel McHale, Patrick Warburton, Giovanni Ribisi and Seth MacFarlane playing Ted through motion-capture, the R-rated comedy arrives in cinemas June 29th in the US and August 1st in the UK. Mila Kunis previously worked with Seth MacFarlane on ‘Family Guy’ as the voice of Meg Griffin.
Having worked with Seth MacFarlane for so long on ‘Family Guy,‘ what was it like for seeing him direct live-action?
Mila Kunis: It’s strange to have Seth be a director, because as much as I have worked with him on ‘Family Guy,’ I’m in one booth, he’s in another booth, and normally he has to explain to me what’s happening. When you record ‘Family Guy,’ you record it a year before anything’s drawn up, so I have no idea what I’m doing. He has to explain the plot, explain what happens, then you do it three or four times and move on. Seeing him actually be a visual director, explaining scenarios and characters, visually setting up shots, it’s been great. I couldn’t be prouder of him, I think he done an amazing job with ‘Ted,’ an amazing job.
What was your reaction to ‘Ted’ when they first told you about the project?
Mila Kunis: It’s a movie about a talking teddy bear, and would expect nothing less from Seth MacFarlane, Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild. To me it made sense. I didn’t question it at all, I was like, “OK.” I mean, I’m on a cartoon with a talking dog, I’m not gonna question a bear – what’s the difference (laughs). And with Seth, I trust him, he knows humour. I really do. He knows funny. Sometimes I’ll be like, “You’re wrong!” But no, he’s not, he’s always right (laughs), just don’t tell him I said that.
Can you tell us a little bit about your character Lori?
Mila Kunis: Lori, she is a hard working girl who loves Mark Wahlberg’s character, for him being a child at heart. But she also has this thing in her where she wants to settle down, have a sense of security that he’s not capable of giving her. And I think she ultimately comes to the realisation that you can’t change someone, you just have to accept them for who they are. And I think she comes into terms with knowing that she is truly in love with the person that he is. And accepting Ted as well.
I thought that she was a great character in that she’s well balanced, she could have easily been nagging or “one-of-the-guys”….?
Mila Kunis: Oh definitely. My biggest concern for every re-write that I read was I didn’t want her to be nagging. I didn’t need her to be one of the guys, I didn’t need her to be nagging. I do believe there’s a happy medium, not all women are beer drinking, American Football loving woman. And then not all women are naggy. There is some that are halfway, so I was like, “I’m gonna do this. Your gonna have to help me?” And Seth did, he trusted me and I trusted him. Then Lori was born. But yes, it was a very fine line because I come from doing a lot of movies with a lot of guys, for some reason. There’s an aspect of my humour that I guess is very guy friendly, but I do believe that I’m still feminine (laughs). I like to hold that for all the ladies (laughs)!
Look out for a more in-depth interview with Mila Kunis for ‘Ted’ closer to the films release date.