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Feature: The Mummy 3

Mummy's Boy

Brendan Fraser

Star Brendan Fraser dusts the sand off his boots and discusses the second sequel to the 1999 action Fantasy film

Explorer Rick O’Connell wasn’t the only one surprised to be battling the undead and their bondage bound bosses not once, not twice, but a third time in this August’s The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. Despite the two instalments raking in a pretty penny in revenues, most of the original cast never fathomed that their first endeavour, 1999’s The Mummy, would deliver enough goods to spawn any sequels at all.

“With a certain degree of bias, the first one was my favourite because we had no idea what we were doing,” smiles an extremely enthusiastic Brendan Fraser. “We were kicking around in the desert. Rachel Weisz was like [in a British accent] ‘Oh my God! They are going to confiscate our equity cards.’ John Hannah was like ‘I am never going to work again. What have I done?’ Then my impersonation of me is ‘Yeah! We are here! I am swinging around from body parts, blowing up stuff, and smashing things!’ There was a certain sense of abandon that went into making the first one and they could have cut that movie any way they wanted. What was the smartest way was to make it a boo scare ride that gave everyone a sense of romance, action, being on location, taking its audience to a place, and not letting it be a movie about a guy wrapped up in bandages stumbling after a girl. It upped the ante and gave the audience what it really demanded. Six or seven years have passed now so it is safe to say that a new generation has come of age that might not be aware of the first two pictures so our challenge was to make a film that could stand on its own. We had to up our game and shoot a movie that didn’t rely on the past models.”

In that respect, the Mummy franchise has received a fresh coat of paint. Not only are Rick and his family now facing a powerful new adversary but replacing Stephen Sommers behind the camera is xXx director Rob Cohen and stepping in for Weisz as the feisty Evie is the stunning Maria Bello.

“This movie has exceeded the expectations of what I hoped for,” notes Fraser. “We have Jet Li as the baddie. We are introducing a new actor called Luke Ford who is playing Alex at age 18. He brought all the tenacity and vulnerability to the role required. In the sprit of the movie, Maria Bello is very tongue in cheek and never takes herself too seriously. John is back as Jonathan and all the conceits of Jonathan were still there. Those who remember the other two pictures will still get something out of it that remind them of the others.”

by Bryan Cairns

Read the full interview in
Starburst #364

Photo © Universal Pictures
Feature © Visual Imagination 2008. Not for reproduction

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Starburst #364
July 2008
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