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Inside Out Movie: Exclusive Interview with Sadness & Bing Bong

Inside Out Movie

As I've told you all before, we are huge Inside Out fans. I think it is one of the best Pixar movies out there. I love how it really does touch each and every one of us from big to little. One of my most favorite interviews that we did for this movie has to be with Phyllis Smith and Richard Kind. Honest to God, I could have talked to these two all day long! They were the most normal, down to earth people you will ever meet. Plus, Richard would have you rolling in the aisles. He's funny without even trying to be funny. I can honestly say this is one of my most favorite interview of any celebrity I've talked to!

You can see from my photo how much fun they were! When Phyllis saw us all getting ready with our cameras, she joined in! I'd love to know where she posted that, because it was really funny! I have to start with how these incredible actors got their start. Phyllis has the most amazing story:

I had been a dancer, and I had an injury. I knew that my career as a dancer was at the end of its life, and I needed to work. I needed to pay my bills and my car insurance, my rent, my health insurance and all of that. I ended up as a receptionist, and a friend of mine called and said that they need a mousey woman for one of the court shows. I said I didn't know if I can do this since I only had certain length of time for lunch. I said I don't think I can make it back. In the haste of all of this, I ripped a huge hole in my nylons. I walked into the casting director’s office, and I said, excuse me, are you looking for a mousey woman or a tacky woman? I didn't get the job, because I wasn’t mousey enough. In the midst of all of that, I told her I thought I’d be good in casting. She called me a year later after that audition! I ended up in casting for 19 years working for really lovely, good casting directors.

The Office came along. I was working for Allison Jones, and we were doing the second day of pairing the leads up in the casting process. The director Ken Kwapis of the pilot he said, Phyllis, I want you to read the character of Pam, and I went okay. I had read with thousands of actors over those 19 years, and I mean thousands. When he asked me about reading the Pam character, I thought, well, did– is somebody late? I went in and I read. They didn't tell me they were auditioning me. About two weeks later, wardrobe calls and said I understand you're playing the character of Phyllis, and I go, yes, I am. I’d been in casting long enough I knew when wardrobe called, you were sent a script that constituted a work call.

I suppose I was honing a craft all those years that I didn't know I was honing because I was reading with actors and knowing what worked and didn't work. In all seriousness, I think God knew the inner desires of my heart and allowed me to have a new career in my older age.

Tell me that isn't an amazing story! Just recounting it has me tearing up, because it is so cool. Then Richard interjected his story which, of course, made us laugh:

My career is the opposite. I slogged and slogged for years.

Amadeus is one of my favorite movies, because here's this guy Saliere who works and works and cultivates. But somebody’s born with genius, and they have just natural talent. What are you going to do? It’s not about how hard you work. You’d like it to be. Usually, if you do work hard you get better, and your talent may rise to the top. Some people are born with simply talent.

Remember I said he was down to earth and so very nice. He only had wonderful things to say about Phyllis. Did you know that Phyllis had no idea how popular Sadness was? Richard had to tell her!

I am not at all surprised at how popular Phyllis’s character is. It’s a perfect voice performance and a perfectly written part by these guys, because it’s such a touchy character because no one wants to be sad and yet we identify with you. I am so taken by your performance because although it’s down in the dumps it’s not– it’s not depressive. It’s simply sad. I think that that's an amazing thing that they and you did.

Can you get a better compliment than that? Best of all, he's right. That is the best summary of Sadness I've seen. Though Phyllis did comment:

I’m glad that people are enjoying it. And every time I make somebody cry I go “yes!”

Yes, she's kidding, but it was really funny. Which leads me to tell you about Richard not being part of the marketing. **Spoiler alert if you still not seen Inside Out and if you haven't, why not??!!??** Bing Bong was kept under wraps. When Inside Out first came out, nobody knew Richard was even in this movie! He was told that he wasn't going to be part of the ad campaigns which he was okay with. Then they said that they were going to Cannes with the five emotions and he was told he wasn't going to Cannes. He said that was fine to them. He confided to us:

I didn't mean a word of that. I was very upset that I wasn’t going to Cannes. It’s Cannes Film Festival and it’s on their dime! Then when the movie came out, and all of a sudden there was an explosion of we didn't know that this guy was in the movie and look how much this guy is touching us. Once again Pixar proves its brilliance. They thought ahead, and they were absolutely right. Nevertheless, I’d like them to send me to France right now.

That is the brilliance of Richard Kind right there. I always love asking actors what their favorite scenes are. It is always fantastic to get their take on things. I loved Phyllis's answer because her answer was a scene she wasn't even in!

I think Richard is just fantastic and steals it when he says– just when Bing Bong says I have a good feeling about this.

Now, if you have seen Inside Out, I know you are tearing up right now remembering the scene. It is an amazing scene from the movie. I have to agree with Phyllis. So does Richard's daughter:

A year ago, I took the family on a trip from Los Angeles up to San Francisco, an eight-day trip up, five hours back, and we stopped at Pixar. They got the tour. They show us a very rough cut of the first 20 minutes. We see the first 20 minutes when Riley’s introduced and then the town and then kinda the emotions are introduced. It was pretty good. As we’re walking away, they go we’re doing a scene and it’s down in the canyon with the wagon — do you want to see it? Of course! We go in, and the TV’s on the stand and it’s the long version of the scene. When it’s finished, my daughter just goes and collapsed in her mother’s arms, sobbing, sobbing, sobbing, and had not seen the whole movie so only had a bit of context. If you want to know when I knew that this movie would resonate, I was given proof at that point.

Inside Out resonates with everyone who sees the movie. As you can see, we had a blast interviewing Richard Kind and Phyllis Smith. If they are ever in Chicago, I'd love to have lunch with them and pick their brains a little more. They were amazing to talk to.

Inside Out Movie

What was your favorite part of our interview? What would you have asked?

Lisa Martin

In April 2006, Lisa began blogging to stay connected with distant relatives and friends. As she delved into blogging, she discovered the potential to assist others by sharing her experiences. Lisa has actively engaged in numerous exclusive media ventures. Notable among these are her participation in events such as the Sony Mommy Bloggers Event, the Pampers Mommy Bloggers Event, the Epson Event in Chicago, the Stouffers Event, a memorable yacht excursion with Lands End, collaborations with 1-800-Baskets, an exclusive tour for bloggers by Mrs. Prindable’s, partnerships with Hallmark, PopCap games, Chicago Cubs Mastercard Priceless Events, and Rug Doctor. In addition, she has collaborated with Nutrisystem on a weight loss initiative, teamed up with Buick and Chevy, and served as a brand ambassador for Sprint. Lisa's collaboration portfolio also extends to Disney, where she has participated in press trips for significant movies such as Frozen, Guardians of the Galaxy, McFarland USA, The Good Dinosaur, The BFG, and Cars 3. Notably, for projects like Frozen, The BFG, and Cars 3, she was granted the privilege of walking the red carpet and conducting interviews with celebrities. The impact of Lisa's blog has gained recognition, with The New York Times referencing her content. Moreover, she has been featured in interviews by respected publications such as the Southtown Star, The Chicago Sun Times, and inside.
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