When Chris Pratt took the role of Peter Quill, aka Star Lord, in Guardians of the Galaxy, he had to hit the gym. He was now a Marvel superhero! But, he’s gained and lost weight before for a role. Does he think he’s setting a bad example? “Are you saying that I might be responsible for giving men body image issues?” Pratt asked Movie Fanatic with his trademark humor firmly in tow.
“Because if that's what you're saying, that's the nicest thing anyone's ever said to me.”
He gets serious for a moment and flirts with the subject of what actresses deal with all the time in the entertainment biz. “I'm sure I can't relate to what females go through in Hollywood. But I do know what it feels like to eat emotionally and to be sad and make yourself happy with food,” Pratt said and laughed.
“And then be almost immediately again sad and now ashamed and then to try to hide those feelings with more food! It's a vicious cycle and it's a very real thing. I know what it's like to have body image issues. And I also know that if you just work hard, enlist the help of good coaches and be coachable and be willing to work hard, you can actually change that. And I offer a course -- it's like $4500 up front.”
As you can tell from this interview, Pratt can be funny and serious all in one answer. That made him the perfect choice to play Quill, the leader of an unlikely band of heroes who have to save the universe, teased in the Guardians of the Galaxy trailer.
“In terms of the attitude of the character, that was a whole process for me on this one and just trusting James (Gunn, director), really. And taking big swings and sometimes falling flat on my face,” Pratt said.
“It's a pretty embarrassing thing to do and you got people pointing cameras at you and hundreds of people watching you as you're trying to be great and often -- almost every time -- you're not! Then, there's one moment where you are and the editor will dig through all the (expletive) to find it and then put it in the movie. So the challenge is not finding the attitude, it's really just like being open and willing to go for it.”
People might be surprised to see Pratt in a role like this, and honestly, so is he. “I'm not sure I even saw myself in this kind of a role,” he said and smiled.
“But what's really nice about this movie is that we did something with this movie that's never been done before and I think anyone who has seen this movie would agree.”
He and director James Gunn got on like gangbusters and it turns out each find similar things funny. “We have a pretty sick sense of humor -- the kind of sense of humor that like if someone were a fly on the wall, they would think that we're maybe mass murderers or sociopaths or something,” Pratt said and laughed.
One thing he requested of Gunn was the Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack. It’s integral to the movie and as anyone knows who has read the comics, it’s a huge part of who Peter Quill is. Quill leaves Earth at an early age and all he has is a Walkman with an “Awesome Mix Vol. 1” in it. And he’s listened to it over and over for two decades.
“That was one of the first things I requested. This tape is such the emotional center of the character and of the movie. Peter Quill has been listening to this thing nonstop his entire life,” Pratt said.
“So I wanted to be that familiar with the music by the time we shot the movie. While I was working out, I just listened to it in order on repeat over and over. So some of the songs I really love and some I really (expletive) hate because I've heard them so many times!”
In the film, Pratt’s Star Lord has a unique relationship with Zoe Saldana’s Gamora. It is someone he thinks he can be romantic with, even if she has other ideas. “She whacked me really good a lot of times -- she can knock you out,” Pratt said.
“She can knock just about anybody out. She’s a serious athlete. She's got a very strong kick and she's not even afraid to use it, too.”
And she uses it quite a bit, especially in this Guardians of the Galaxy extended trailer. She, Dave Bautista’s Drax, Pratt’s Star Lord, Bradley Cooper’s Rocket Raccoon and Vin Diesel’s Groot make up this quintet of unlikely heroes that will surely charm audiences when it lands August 1.