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Jay Baruchel on How to Train Your Dragon

Published March 29, 2010 in Movie Interviews
By Fred Topel | Image property of DreamWorks Animation
How to Train Your Dragon tells the story of a young Viking, Hiccup, who doesn’t fit in with all the other dragon slayers. He learned to train a dragon and ride him instead of fighting against him. It just goes to show that the social outcasts are always the ones who end up successful in life.

Jay Baruchel Talks How to Train Your Dragon


“They’re the ones that have something to offer, something to give people I think, in any facet of life whether they’re artists or businessmen or whatever they are,” said Jay Baruchel who plays the voice of Hiccup. “The Hiccups of the world are the ones that make the records you like or the movies you dig and write the books that mean something to you, I think. It’s like that great thing in Almost Famous; where they basically say the guys that have everything come easy to them, they never have anything interesting to say, so how are they going to write any good songs?”

When he was growing up, acting was Baruchel’s dragon training. “To a certain extent, I know my dad’s only ambition was for me to play hockey. If I couldn’t play hockey, at the very least I would play baseball. That was the settling one. Many hours in the backyard playing pitch and catch where I would find ways of getting out of it. My go-to was just limp noodle with the mit and just let the ball hit me and I’d fall on the ground on purpose and be like, ‘See, I’m just not cut out for it. Can I go watch cartoons now?’ So in that respect, there’s some similarity. I have to say, in my dad’s defense, once he realized that I wasn’t going to be like him, he really truly became one of my biggest supporters at whatever I did. He just wanted me to kill it. Whatever I did, he wanted me to do the best I could.”


How to Train Your Dragon How to Train Your Dragon


Mr. Baruchel did finally get the picture, actually sooner than many parents. “It actually took two years of me playing baseball, one year with him as the coach. You always hear about when a guy’s coaching and his kid is on the team that there’s nepotism. It was the exact opposite. I must have been the only kid in the history of baseball to say, ‘Please dad, bench me. Please dad, bench me.’ Because I loved hanging out with my friends and sitting on the bench and talking sh*t with all the kids but I hated having to actually swing a bat.”

Critics are already comparing Dragon to Avatar for it’s 3-D images of dragons flying around a lush animated world. “That’s actually a good way of putting it, maybe. I think it could be that. It has shades of many movies in it. That’s also just a timeless tale. It’s also Romeo and Juliet really if we’re going to go back. It’s got some parts of that to it. Yeah, I think our movie’s cooler, personally.”

At it’s heart, it’s really just the story of a boy and his dog. In this case the dog is a dragon. “Oh, very much so. 150% boy and his dog, boy and his horse, very much so. Everything about this movie is classic but at its heart, the movie I honestly think is about a bunch of different things. There’s a lot of substance to it but at its heart it is a boy and his dog, for sure. Or for me I’d say a boy and his cat.”

How to Train Your Dragon opens to theaters March 26th.

For the posters, stills, trailers and more movie info, go to the How to Train Your Dragon Movie Page.
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Compiled By (Sources)
Fred Topel
Sources: Image property of DreamWorks Animation
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