Director James Bobin and Sacha Baron Cohen have had a close relationship for years, first working together all the way back in the late-1990s when Cohen was first developing his Ali G character on the U.K.'s The 11 O'Clock Show. This obviously gave the actor a bit of an edge when it came to the casting of Time in Bobin’s upcoming Alice Through The Looking Glass - though the gig goes beyond just their friendship. The director truly feels that Cohen was the perfect actor for the part, largely because his ability to balance both being funny and infusing his roles with heart.
I had the opportunity to sit down with James Bobin earlier this month during a Alice Through The Looking Glass press day held in London, and the first subject that we discussed was his collaboration with Sacha Baron Cohen. Acknowledging Bobin’s past work with the actor, I asked if the casting was further influenced by Cohen’s past work with Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter – and while the answer to that was mostly a no, the filmmaker went on to explain why he felt that the actor was the proper choice for the part. Said Bobin,
Going further, James Bobin added that understanding this within the character of Time was something monumentally important for the development of his arc within Alice Through The Looking Glass - particularly when it came to the end of the story and capturing the proper level of emotion. The audience is meant to have a degree of sympathy for this powerful-but-solitary figure who finds himself manipulated by the person he loves, a.k.a. Helena Bonham Carter’s The Red Queen. The filmmaker explained,
You can watch James Bobin discuss the casting of Sacha Baron Cohen and the part of Time in Alice Through The Looking Glass in the video below:
Alice Through The Looking Glass arrives in theaters this Friday, May 27th.
NJ native who calls LA home; lives in a Dreamatorium. A decade-plus CinemaBlend veteran; endlessly enthusiastic about the career he’s dreamt of since seventh grade.
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