For comedian Ron Funches, joining the colorful voice cast of the vibrant animated film “Trolls” was a no-brainer.
“I have a 13-year-old son and I do a lot of risqué standup comedy. I wanted him to be able to see some of my work, so when the opportunity came up to be in a DreamWorks cartoon with Justin Timberlake, I couldn’t pass it up.”
In the film, the lovable actor-comedian, who can be seen on NBC’s “Undateable” voices the character of Cooper, a fuzzy, harmonica-playing, giraffe-like Troll with a goofy grin plastered permanently on his face.
“Cooper is a rare Troll and his defining trait is his boundless enthusiasm. He's really excited about everything. He loves his friends and he is happy to be alive,” shares Funches about the character, who also has a unique reaction to being frightened -- he poops cupcakes.
A brilliant escapist flick, the film transports audiences to a colorful world populated by the overly optimistic Trolls, who have a constant dance in their step, a song on their lips and a hug on the hour -- every hour. It’s a wondrous world that comes crashing down when their Troll Village is attacked by the miserable Bergens – malevolent monsters who need to consume Trolls to ensure their own happiness. After the Bergens invade, Poppy (Anna Kendrick), the happiest Troll ever born, and the overly-cautious, Branch (Justin Timberlake) set off on a journey to rescue her friends. Their mission is full of adventure and mishaps, as the mismatched duo try to tolerate each other long enough to complete their rescue mission.
Featuring a stellar cast that also includes the voices of Russell Brand, Quvenzhané Wallis and Gwen Stefani, “Trolls” is an infectious flick, which features several toe-tapping songs of all genres.
“It's a fun musical and for younger audiences, it gives them a chance to hear songs they have never heard before and maybe they will go and look up some of the older artists.”
With Justin Timberlake serving as the film’s executive music producer, expect to also hear classic tracks from Lionel Richie, Kool and the Gang, Bonnie Tyler, Donna Summer, Ariana Grande and Timberlake’s celebratory anthem “Can’t Stop the Feeling” that brings the Trolls and Bergens together. It’s a song performed by Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Zooey Deschanel, Timberlake, Kendrick and Funches who got the chance to belt out a track.
"Justin taught me how to sing some notes and that was a dream come true,” Funches says.
Directed by Mike Mitchell (“Shrek Forever After”), “Trolls” is an infectious comedy about the search for happiness, and just how far some will go to get it. The Trolls’ all-singing, all-dancing, all-hugging world is all about happiness, which infuses every frame of the film as it explores how we treat others and, more importantly, how we treat ourselves. Its emotionally charged message is that happiness comes from within, and can be a powerful and infectious force when it’s spread.
Trolls Director Mike Mitchell, Ron Funches, Producer Gina Shay and Co-Director Walt Dohrn at the Los Angeles Premiere of Trolls - Photo by Eric Charbonneau
“The key to happiness is holding on to your happiness and being able to be yourself,” adds Funches. “It’s not something you have to buy, make or create. It’s already within you and you just have to hold on to it because the world is rough and sometimes it will try and take it from you.”
“Trolls” is currently playing in U.S. theaters.
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