When the kingdom’s most wanted, and most charming, bandit Flynn Rider hides out in a mysterious tower, he’s taken hostage by Rapunzel, a beautiful and feisty tower-bound teen with 70 feet of magical, golden hair. Flynn’s curious captor, who’s looking for her ticket out of the tower where she’s been locked away for years, strikes a deal with the handsome thief and the unlikely duo sets off on an action-packed escapade, complete with a super-cop horse, an over-protective chameleon and a gruff gang of thugs. Tangled (rated PG) hits theaters on Nov. 24, 2010.
Here are Mandy Moore and Zachary Levi, the actors who provide the voices of Rapunzel and Flynn, to tell us more about the movie. . .
Q: What do you like about Tangled?
Zachary: It’s not about a damsel in distress who needs to be saved. It’s about a young woman who has dreams and aspirations and needs a partner in crime to help facilitate that throughout the course of the film. So you get all kinds of adventure with someone who’s as unrefined as Flynn is; he’s a thief. They get into a lot of trouble. There’s a lot of people chasing them for different reasons. Flynn can’t help but put his foot in his mouth over and over and over again. And yet, because of Rapunzel’s goodness, she can see past all that and still see the good guy that’s there, and that helps him change a lot too. Plus, there are near-death escapes at least every ten minutes, great animal characters that bring so much life and comedy to the film, swashbuckling, and swinging from either hair or ropes or vines or what have you. There are great chases, great fights and battles. And it’s in 3D. So all of your thugs and ruffians are just jumping off the screen at you.
Q: Why did you want to portray Rapunzel?
Mandy: I grew up with the best of the best: The Little Mermaid, Aladdin and Beauty and the Beast. What little girl doesn’t fantasize about being part of that? I love the Rapunzel’s story. It’s really, really funny and heartwarming. It has a feel-good, empowering message of being the best version of yourself and overcoming obstacles and challenges—being strong enough to jump over those hurdles and live up to your full potential.
Q:Describe Rapunzel’s 70 feet of hair.
Mandy: Rapunzel has a gigantic mass of magical, almost other-worldly hair that’s almost its own living entity with all sorts of abilities. It’s a pretty hot commodity. Mother Gothel selfishly keeps Rapunzel and her unique powers hidden from the world, using them for her own benefit.
Q: Tell us about Flynn Rider.
Mandy: I think there is a lot more than what meets the eye with Flynn Rider. He comes across as a bit of a lady’s man. He’s a charming, overconfident thief who finds himself in a precarious situation. He’s stolen something and is being chased and finds himself hiding out in Rapunzel’s tower. She takes it upon herself to capture him, knock him out, hide his satchel and interrogate him. Then she concocts this plan that she’ll give him back his satchel if he helps her escape the tower. The combination of Flynn and Rapunzel is pretty dynamic. She brings out the best in him and he ends up bringing out the best in her.
Q:What is the smolder?
Zachary: Yeah, the smolder. I had never heard the term “smolder” before doing the smolder and immediately started laughing when I was reading over the lines that I was going to do that day. The smolder is—some might call it the magnum, the blue steel—Flynn calls it the smolder. It is that kind of pouty-lipped look that’s supposed to just sizzle the synapses of any female that’s in proximity of it. Unfortunately, Rapunzel is far too good and pure to be affected by such a smolder, so it doesn’t really have an effect on her. But I’m sure somewhere in the kingdom there are some damsels who just melt.
Q: Why do you think Maximus the horse is so popular?
Zachary: In the very beginning of the movie, Max and Flynn are wrestling with a satchel, and then Flynn’s upside down, hanging onto the tree trunk for dear life, and Maximus is bearing down on him, sniffing the ground like a bloodhound; he sees a “Flynn Wanted” poster and just chews it up like a paper shredder. It’s the little things just lend themselves to comedy gold in my opinion.
Mandy: Maximus is my favorite character in the film. He’s a horse who has a lot of personality. He’s a great combination of a horse and a dog. He’s a goofball. He’s stubborn and I think he’s a great match for Flynn. Rapunzel just takes to him and loves him right off the bat.
Q: What was it like recording the songs from the film with an orchestra?
Mandy: Having the opportunity to record with the orchestra on that stage was something I will never forget. I was there with a 65-piece orchestra that was playing this beautiful arrangement that I loved. I had rehearsals with a piano and I knew the song going in—but then standing in front of the orchestra, it was like everything went out the window, you know? Every bit of professionalism, every bit of rehearsal experience—it all got washed away because I just wanted to stop and listen to them play together. It gives me the chills to think about it. I was a little nervous after that, but it all turned out okay.
Q: What was your favorite song to sing?
Zachary: “I See the Light” is my duet with Mandy and pretty much the only song I sing. It’s like the moment in the movie. We’re on a boat, we’re seeing these lanterns—it’s the culmination of their journey together.
Mandy: “I See the Light” is probably my favorite song in the film. It’s a duet between Rapunzel and Flynn, and it’s happening at the moment Rapunzel is finally seeing her dreams come true and realizing that maybe there was more to the journey than just seeing these lights. Having the opportunity to record with Zac [who plays Flynn] was unbelievable. The minute he opened his mouth, I realized that this guy can really sing. He has a beautiful voice that is very charming. We had a lot of fun recording together.