ANIME: Harold Perrineau Talks Blade Anime, Plus A New Clip!
Hit the jump to see what the man behind Blade's voice in the new series, Harold Perrineau had to say about the new Blade Anime series as he talks to IGN.
With Marvel Anime shows like Iron Man, Wolverine and X-Men gone, there's been a emptiness which Blade Anime is going to fill. Harold Perrineau, the voice actor playing Blade in the series, talks to IGN and reveals why he choose to play Blade, if previous movies influenced him to play Blade and like the previous Marvel Anime, if the story is set in Japan and much more so read on but first check out the new clip below.
IGN TV: It's obviously a dream we all had as a kid to be a superhero, in one form or the other. When you got the call about Blade, was it like, "I've got to do this"?
Harold Perrineau: Exactly. It was exactly that. It was like Blade, a superhero, which is excellent. There aren't a lot of African American superheroes, so that was the other thing. Not that it had to be, it was really great just to get a chance to do it. And I'm never going to be that big and muscular, and so I try and dream about it all the time. So it was great to be able to do the voice and hopefully jump on the action hero bandwagon.
IGN: The story takes Blade to Japan, right?
HP: Yeah, Blade is in Japan. He's actually all over. He goes to Madripoor. He goes to Vietnam, he goes to a bunch of different islands over there. So it's not just Japan. It's really cool because each place has a bit of their own vampire mythology, which is all really different from the American vampire mythologies. So the vampires are a little different, and they turn into different things or come from different things. So that stuff is really, really cool as the exploration; this journey of a place.
IGN: The first Blade movie came out ahead of this kind of insane, vampire explosion we've seen in the past few years, some of which have a much lighter version of vampires than others. Is it exciting to be part of one where it's like, "You've got to kill these suckers"?
HP: [Laughs] Exactly! Even though I am a vampire, I've gotta f***ing kill them all. Exactly."Enough of this s**t!" Yeah, yeah. And at the end, the dude in Twilight, you just get to cut his head off. [Laughs] No, no. I'm sure he's a very nice guy. In a sense it was ahead of the curve not only in those days, but also in the superhero action movies. It was ahead in all that. Now we have all those things. We have a bunch of superheroes like the Avengers and all that stuff, and a ton of vampire stuff. And Blade was before all those things. So yeah, it is kind of cool to kind of be affiliated with that kind of a thing.
IGN: With the films and people knowing Wesley's performance, was it something you kind of wanted to put to the side, because you wanted to put your own spin on it? Or were you at all influenced by the way Wesley played the character?
HP: Absolutely. I loved the movies back in the day when Wesley did them. I saw them all. I even started watching them again because for me it felt like that's the only way to be Blade. I knew that I could come up with my own spin, but I had to revisit what they had done, because, like you just said, they were really ahead of the curve. They were doing special effects things that didn't get popular until The Matrix, and they were before The Matrix. So there are a bunch of really cool things, and I knew that they had captured some really cool stuff, so I watched them again. Instead of taking it from my memory, I just kind of took it from there and then tried to create a more current spin on Blade. Because he looks a little different than the Wesley Snipes character.
IGN: Blade never had a particularly large supporting cast, but are any familiar characters like Whistler around or is there a new supporting cast for Blade in this series?
HP: Whistler is around. He is there helping him. And yeah, I think it just starts all over as opposed to trying to continue from where that Blade left off. We start with more understanding of Blade's background, and we really go into his history of how he became who he became, why he's on the mission that he's on, why he's in this part of the world that he's in. And this is stuff that I don't really remember being in the movie that much. Some of it about Blade's mother was there, but this is a little bit more in depth. And then also about Blade's training and stuff like that, and Whistler is there. He kind of comes in and out and still helps him a lot. It's really, really great. But there's a lot of love and loss, and it's really, really good. I mean, it's really, really good. The animation is just beautiful. It's great to watch, and it still is really. If you like comics and you like that anime stuff, it really is. I'm really proud to be part of it. That's all I've got to say. It's really, really good.
IGN: I know you had done a little voice over before, but was this your most extensive time, playing one character, and all of the nuances of doing a vocal performance?
HP: Absolutely, yeah. I'd only done a very little bit of voice over stuff. Like literally I had a day on Handy Manny. [Laughs] Stuff like that, like small stuff. So this was definitely a new change for me, and I'm such a physical actor that often times -- and I've gone in to audition for the voice over stuff -- it doesn't always translate because I wasn't always really able to translate it on the microphone. So I was really glad when they didn't make me audition, and they called me up and I was like, "Whoo! That part's done. Okay!" [Laughs] And when you get in there with a great director -- and we had two really great directors that helped it out -- they can really guide you in a way to make it really live and make it fit all the action that we see on the screen.
IGN: I've spoken to other actors who do voice over and they say you just get used to the amusing part of doing various grunts and such, for fight scenes or other moments where you just need to make a reaction noise.
HP: Exactly! You do a lot of, "Mmm, mmm. Mmm? Mmmm!" [Laughs] It really is, there is a lot of that. And with Blade, because he's doing a lot of swordplay, there's always a lot of… When he's slashing somebody, like, "Ehhh!" [Laughs] I don't know how you're going to write this down. There are a lot of very funny nuances, and you do get used to that. It's kind of funny.
IGN: What are you working on currently?
HP: I'm working on a TV show called The Wedding Band right now. It's me, Brian Austin Green and Melora Hardin and Peter Cambor and Derek Miller. Lotta, lotta, lotta fun. It'll be out this summer.
IGN: What do you play in that?
HP: I am the band's new bass player Stevie, and they're just this wedding band that… They really, really get into weddings. So with all the great wedding movies that have been out in the last few years, this is sort of a continuation of Wedding Singer or Wedding Crashers or any of those things. These guys are fun and funny, and the music is phenomenal. So after I finish, I may go back and have a trombone lesson. Even though I'm the bass player, they've got me playing all these instruments. So I play trombone, saxophone, violin -- fiddle, actually -- keyboard, and my bass. It's just been one thing after another. So it's a lot of fun.
IGN: Did you have any background playing bass, or was this all new to you?
HP: I did play bass when I was a kid, and so I was revisiting all of that stuff when I got here. So that part of it was easy and fun. So that's probably my favorite part because that's the most familiar. The other stuff is a little tricky.
I liked Iron Man Anime but then Wolverine Anime came on and we all know how it turned out so I stopped watching Marvel Anime but I think I will give Blade Anime a shot and then its the last anime from Marvel so don't forget to check it out when it premiers on G4 this Friday.
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