Original “Happy Feet” castmembers Elijah Wood and Robin Williams return to breathe life to beloved Penguin characters in Warner Bros.’ adorable sequel, Happy Feet 2.
In the film, Mumble — The Master of Tap – has a problem because his tiny son, Erik, is choreo-phobic. Reluctant to dance, Erik runs away and encounters The Mighty Sven—a penguin who can fly! Mumble has no hope of competing with this charismatic new role model.
Elijah Wood reprises the role of the masterful tap-dancing penguin, whose unique talents have captured the hearts of so many. “I knew that George would never do a sequel unless it was something that he felt was true to the original story and that there was another compelling story to tell.”
In fact, the same things that attracted the actor to the original film have been reprised in the sequel. “There are beautiful environmental themes throughout, pointing to the change that is occurring in our world now, and how it’s affecting our precious animals,” Wood continues. “George handles it so well, just as he did in the first film. It’s woven into the piece in an organic way, along with the themes of love and identity. I think it’s especially good for young people to see a film like this and recognize that it’s ultimately the things that differentiate us from others that are our strongest defining characteristics. Those are qualities to be celebrated, not ashamed of.”
Mumble’s best friend also returns in the sequel: Ramon, the talkative Adelie penguin, who has been drawn to Emperor Land because he finds the senoritas altas alluring. Too bad they find him alarming.
Robin Williams again voices Ramon. “He is basically still the same incurable romantic. He still loves las chicas, but he has not found the bird of his dreams. And yet, he still has an image that he is a gift to all females, that they want him in the worst way. The Adelies all are very, very machismo; so though he is small, he is fierce.”
According to co-screenwriter Gary Eck, “Robin Williams just brought so much to the table. He came up with these lines, and we sit there and you say, ‘That’s great! We’ll use that! Sure, we spent eight months coming up with that line, but you just made it even better in two seconds. So, thank you!’” he laughs.
No matter how macho he is, a penguin can only take so much rejection from the opposite sex. Realizing he’ll have no luck with the Emperor ladies, Ramon journeys back to Adelie Land, where he finds that things have changed. Not only is the ‘New Adelie Land’ full of many different species of penguin, the place is more colorful—with patches of green peeking through the snow. And so is Lovelace, the guru Rockhopper Penguin who now sports a crazy rainbow sweater.
Lovelace is also voiced again by the multi-talented Williams, who points out, “Lovelace was rescued from an oil slick. A penguin loses buoyancy in a slick, so he was scrubbed up by humans—who the penguins refer to as ‘the aliens.’ But after being cleaned up, penguins lose some of the warmth of their feathers, so there are folks who knit little sweaters for rescued penguins. They can’t swim in them, but until they’re ready for release, they wear them. Lovelace’s is striped; he looks like a tiny colorful Rasta penguin.”
Opening across the Philippines on Nov. 23 in IMAX 3D, Digital 3D and regular theaters, “Happy Feet 2” is distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.