Comic-Con 2013: Terry Crews on Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 Terry Crews

CraveOnline: A lot of your screen persona, which I think is so interesting, is that you're a very strong, physical presence but then when you talk, even though you talk very forcefully, there's a sort of like, you're just a guy, you know? You're just a cool guy. Sometimes you're very passionate or sometimes you're over sensitive, in a way, and there's a contrast there but here in animation, you can focus on the voice. The contrast isn't necessarily there.

Terry Crews: That's right. I am a performer. That is what I am and it's really weird because as a performer, there are times when you have to dial it down like when I did "The Newsroom." It was all about being…

I was very surprised to see you in that. I was like, "Terry Crews is in this?! This is awesome!"

What an honor. I mean, Aaron Sorkin.

Did you have to audition for that?

Oh yeah. I went in.

They didn't just "want Terry Crews."

Yeah. I went for it and it was one of those things where you have to fight for it. And I got it, and I read with Aaron and the whole thing and I'm like, "This is some really big stuff," but it was about being small. It was about really not being energetic.

And you were allowed to be intimidating but you had to do it with just a couple of words or with a look.

Yeah. The big, intimidating thing is already covered.

Welcome to my world, Terry Crews…

[Laughs] That's the deal! You and I know what we're talking about.

Yes, of course.

So, that's done. Now, it's the thing of, "What have you not seen?" And with me, I'm always willing to just put it out there. I'm in touch with my feminine side, you know? It's all good, whereas everybody else wants to be bad-ass, let's try good-ass this time. That's different. Nobody saw good-ass. 

You should make that movie, Good-Ass.

[Laughs] That's right! Sweet Sweetback's Good-Ass Song!

That'd be cool. I like that. I like that a lot. You're in The Expendables 3, right? You're signed up for that?

We're working on it.

Nothing official, yet?

Nothing official, yet. 

Fair enough. A lot of those movies, they're full of bad-asses and yet, I haven't seen Terry Crews really headline a big action movie yet. And I'm like, "Why the hell not?" Are you working on anything? Are you trying to get a passion project up for you, a big thing?

I have some things that I'm writing. It's very important to know that, sometimes, sometimes, the market will tell you. The market doesn't lie. It's like numbers. When you need to be there, it'll be there. When people start pushing you up there… It's like The President. He's elected, you know what I'm saying? Obama kind of came out of nowhere but all of a sudden, everybody said, "Wait, wait. This is the guy." He couldn't do it himself. If Obama said, "I wanna be President," it's like, "Good luck, buddy." But it's collusion. It's people coming around, going, "Hey!" People in dark corners, going like, "Wait, wait. That's the guy. He can fulfill what we need." I'm the guy who… I'm just going to be in a good place and wait for the market. You wait for them to call you.

Wait for the right moment.

Be ready, though. That's my whole deal. Be the good thing, along with everyone else. I love ensembles. That's another thing, too. Do the "Arrested [Developments], do the “Newsroom,” do these kinds of shows with great talent like Bill [Hader] and Anna [Faris] and Andy [Samberg]. I've got a new show with Andy Samberg, on Fox called Brooklyn 99. Do that stuff and then all of a sudden, people start to notice and then they just push you up there. One thing is, a guy like me, I'm different. I'm not that one white guy that's gonna lead that. You've got to show them that you exist before, they didn't even know you did. Old Spice. The stuff I do on Old Spice, they go, "I never knew, or saw, or thought about that! But now that I know it's here, I love it!" You know what I mean? But if you were to show somebody and said, "This is what we're gonna do," they'd be like, "Aw, that's crazy! That's not gonna work!" That's how I am. My whole career is like a "Harlem Shake" video. [Laughs]

But when the moment comes, and I hope it does and I hope it comes soon, is there something, assuming it's not just like, "Here, play Luke Cage," or whatever it is, what will you want? You have your moment to star in a big movie.

You know what? I wanna play something that is really… it changes the game. I don't wanna be the same story where it's the Charles Bronson formula, where he's getting revenge or whatever.

Over and over and over again.

I wanna play something that really challenges me, like really takes me to a whole other place. I don't mind revenge movies. I like revenge movies.

No, it's fun but it's been done so many times. It's a specific genre.

It's Taken… It's a specific genre. It's Payback. Everybody's done that. What I'm saying is, I want it to be like, "Oh my god. I never saw that. Ever." 

You could reverse the revenge genre and it's just a really tough guy being nice to everyone and refusing to fight.

[Laughs] Well, you know, Michael Jai White and I were talking about doing something, where we're like, two of the nerdiest, biggest, bad-asses of all time.

I'd love to see that.

You know what I mean? We love our families, we have kids… but we don't play. [Laughs] It breaks all kind of boundaries. That's what I wanna do.

That would be funny.

Exactly, just give them something they haven't done before. That's the kind of stuff I'm trying to produce.

William Bibbiani is the editor of CraveOnline's Film Channel and co-host of The B-Movies Podcast. Follow him on Twitter at @WilliamBibbiani.