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Brett Ratner on Rush Hour 3

Published August 7, 2007 in Movie Interviews
By Fred Topel | Images property of New Line Cinema.
Rush Hour 3 Poster Rush Hour 3
Rush Hour 3 takes mismatched detectives Carter (Chris Tucker) and Lee (Jackie Chan) to Paris to investigate their latest case. While the new setting provides more new opportunities for action scenes, it also enhances the comedy, says director Brett Ratner.

Ratner Talks Rush Hour 3


"You have to understand Rush Hour is not just a buddy cop movie," said Ratner. "It’s a fish out of water comedy and you have to be in an environment where these guys don’t speak the language in order for the fish out of water to work. A comedy has to come in these movies from the situations and not from the jokes. The fact that they both don’t speak the language is what makes the movie funny."

Traveling the world, Ratner is careful not to insult other cultures. Lee and Carter may continue to misunderstand each other, but their races as a whole are safe. "I think any kind of racial statements are really between Jackie and Chris. Of course, we were making fun of the French, but that’s a nationality, not a race. If you called me fat, I would be insulted. But, if my friends called me fat, I wouldn’t care because they’re my friends. They can say that. So, you can get away with a lot more because you know Jackie and Chris have a lot of affection for each other. Jackie can do a black thing and Chris can do a Chinese thing, and it works. If you’re my friend, you can say anything you want to me, and if you’re not, be careful because if I get mad, I might bite you."

It has been important to Ratner to make the Rush Hour franchise multiracial. "The rule is, if you speak perfect English, you will not get a part in this movie. I went to a public high school and most of the comedy was coming from the black kids and the Asian kids and the Hispanic kids. The coolest kids to me where always the black kids. They were always fashion forward and they always dressed the coolest. They were always the best dancers, and just the coolest people. So, that’s where my affection for black people came from."



Being abroad afforded Jackie Chan another unique set piece for action. The climactic fight takes place on the Eiffel Tower, for real. "Not all of it, but it was definitely real and we were there. Some of it was real and some of it was green screen. It depends on how dangerous the shot was. If we’d gotten all the permissions, we probably could’ve have done all of it there but the problem was we could only have the Eiffel Tour from midnight to six a.m. Then we could only bring up the equipment at midnight so we have six hours of shooting and then about two hours of equipment to lift up there. Then we have an hour lunch which is really two hours in France because you open wine at the table. So we have two hours every night to shoot there and I’m spending most of my time turning on and off the lights of the Eiffel Tour at night and freaking out a lot of the French people."

Rush Hour 3 opens to theatres on August 10th.

For stills, trailers and more movie info, head over to the Rush Hour 3 Movie Page.

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Fred Topel
Sources: Images property of New Line Cinema.
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