While in Los Angeles for The Good Dinosaur premiere event, I had the opportunity to sit down with the voices of Arlo, Spot, & Buck of the movie. These 3 young men were insightful and full of joy about being a part of a Disney Pixar film. And it made me love them and The Good Dinosaur even more. I think you will agree……
If you have seen Disney Pixar’s The Good Dinosaur there is little doubt that you have fallen in love with the main characters, Arlo & Spot. This funny pair struck up an loving, yet unlikely relationship and it is endearing to watch. But what would you think if I told that while filming the movie, the 2 actors never met? In fact, when we sat down with them a few weeks ago, they had only seen each other face to face a few times before. Crazy, right?
It’s not necessary when filming an animated character to record the dialogue at the same time to get a great performance, as these boys have shown us in their performance in The Good Dinosaur. This is just one of the many fun facts we learned when we sat down with Marcus Scribner (voice of Buck), Raymond Ochoa (voice of Arlo), and Jack Bright (voice of Spot) a few weeks ago. These young men were personable and charming and a pleasure to meet.
The Good Dinosaur: Being a Part of a Disney Pixar Film
For all 3 young men, The Good Dinosaur was their first voiceover, animation work and for it to be a Disney Pixar film has been a “mind-blowing experience!” as Schribner puts it. Bright grew up watching Cars, loving Disney Pixar and for him to be 10 years old, playing a character in this film was like a dream come true. And it’s hard for them at such a long age to grasp that they will forever be a part of Disney Pixar history.
And like typical kids – cause they all are still – they were thrilled to hear they landed the roles, jumping on beds and screaming. Ochoa saying it was one of the most “favorite jobs I’ve ever gotten in my entire career.”
But Bright was the original Spot cast in the film. In fact, his older brother landed the role first but because of voice changing, Bright was asked to step in. I am sure big brother is proud of Bright’s performance now.
The Good Dinosaur: Getting into Character
Arlo & Buck are Apatosauruses – know what that is specifically? me neither! – and both Scribner & Ochoa had to do a little research to learn more about this particular dinosaur before playing it. While Ochoa worked hard to make Arlo tough but sweet-sounding, Scribner had to make Buck tough. “He’s very rambunctious, so to play a character like that I really had to just let all my emotions through, really give it my all and play it towards the microphone. Doing voiceover is very different from live-action so I was really able to release the character from within.” Scribner told us.
For Bright, playing Spot was fun as he was able to growl and snarl and make noises. He even used the character to his advantage, annoying his brothers around the house, saying he was “rehearsing.” Ochoa had nice things to say about Bright’s performance, “I think he had the toughest character to do. He doesn’t have to talk. You have to bring out emotion just within these howls and growls, and I think he did an amazing job.”
The Good Dinosaur: Working with Director Peter Sohn
The actors all spoke with admiration of Director Peter Sohn. Because of Sohn’s background as both an animator and actor, he knows how to really brings the characters to life. They spoke of how Sohn was able to show them how he wanted the characters to be portrayed. When we later spoke with Sohn, he was blown-away by their performance, saying that they could very quickly get into character.
The Good Dinosaur: Favorite Scenes
Truth be told, all 3 of the actors had not seen the full version of the movie when we spoke with them as the premiere was the very next day. But each of them had a favorite scene that they worked on. Ochoa spoke lovingly about my favorite scene, when Arlo explains to Spot the meaning of family. It was a difficult scene to film because he wanted to make Sohn proud as he knew it was gonna be really impactful to the crowd and to the audience. “Just by saying that one line, it was just literally naming names, filming that was so amazing. Once I did complete it, it was such a relief because I was like wow, I finally got what Pete wanted.” said Ochoa.
For Scribner, he enjoyed filming the scene where Buck scares Arlo in the chicken pen. He jokingly told us that his voice is a “little weird right now” so laughing is hard and he didn’t think he could make it sound natural. Worked well in the movie, didn’t it?
The Good Dinosaur: How are they Like their Characters?
Like any good performances, personalities and traits are brought into a character and actors take home a bit of their characters as well. All 3 young men spoke about how their characters impacted them the most. And it was inspiring to hear the words they spoke, knowing that they are all just young men.
“I try to be the best son as I can to my parents ‘cause I do respect them a lot. So to be a great son to them, that’s all I really want in life. They do so much for me so I just want to pay them back for all they do.” —– Raymond Ochoa
“I really aspire to be like Buck, my character, who’s really self-confident and a real leader.” —– Marcus Scribner
And what’s the biggest take away they had from the movie? Ochoa sums it up well:
[dropshadowbox align=”none” effect=”lifted-both” width=”auto” height=”” background_color=”#ffffff” border_width=”1″ border_color=”#dddddd” ]”You know, the saying ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’? Arlo judges Spot to be this mean and evil person but later on in the film he realizes how caring and loving he really is. I think everyone should not be so quick to judge someone, because you really don’t know who they are.”[/dropshadowbox]
The Good Dinosaur is in theaters now!
Check out more of the fun we had on the #GoodDinoEvent press trip:
Making of Disney Junior’s The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar
LIVE Taping of Dancing with the Stars
Creation of The Good Dinosaur with Director Peter Sohn
The Good Dinosaur Red Carpet Movie Premiere
The Good Dinosaur Toys & Disney Infinity 3.0
4 Things You Will Learn from Disney Pixar’s The Good Dinosaur
A Walk with Tracee Ellis Ross from ABC’s blackish
Behind the Scenes on the Set of The Muppets
Disclaimer: Disney sent me to Los Angeles on an all-expenses paid press trip, in exchange for my coverage of The Good Dinosaur premiere. All opinions are my own.