With his latest movie 'Peter Rabbit' in theatres this week, James Corden reflected on playing the title role in a segment on 'The Late Late Show'. He and his co-stars opened up about his impressive dedication to method-acting, even when it did go a little too far by the end of it.
In a hilarious sketch to promote the new film; a semi-animated comedy adaptation of the Beatrix Potter story; James, Domhnall Gleeson, Margot Robbie and director Will Gluck give spoof interviews with regards to James' habit of dressing up in a full rabbit costume, living off raw vegetables and opting for a hutch instead of a dressing room.
'When I take on a role in a film, I throw myself into it 100 per cent', James confesses. 'The part becomes all-consuming. So when I got offered the role of Peter Rabbit, I didn't just want to play the rabbit, I wanted to be the rabbit.'
Indeed, Margot - who is the voice of Flopsy in the movie - admitted that while she was 'excited' about working with James, she 'had no idea he was that dedicated an actor'. That appears to be the understatement of the century.
'As a director, you always want your lead actor to commit to the role', says Will. 'But there's levels to it: there's commitment, and then there's 'commitment', and then there's just being a f***ing a**hole.'
Even Domhnall was 'shocked' by James' transformation, especially given that his character was going to be animated. Needless to say, it was only after James went all out on his character development that he realised the fact.
'Did I know that Peter was going to be animated? No, I didn't', he explains. 'But, having already gone through a 15-hour surgical procedure to have my face reconstructed, I decided it would definitely still be the best way to approach the role.'
'Look, when you hire me to play a part, I'm gonna go all in', he continues. 'Whether that means doing my own stunts, getting six-pack abs for an action film or, in this case, developing a tapeworm.'
Domhnall - who plays Mr. McGregor in the film - even suggested that it affected the ratings of James' show, as the clip cuts to an unimpressed audience listening to the host telling terrible bunny-related jokes. 'Eventually it just got intolerable', he said, as we see James having a meltdown on set after his co-star removes his rabbit-paw gloves.
As funny as the clip might be, method-acting is taken seriously by a great many actors. We'd certainly love to see how someone like Daniel Day-Lewis would approach a comedic character such as this. Though we suspect he'd leave off the fluffy rabbit tail.