Blue’s Big City Adventure Interview: Josh Dela Cruz & Donovan Patton

Blue's Big City Adventure Interview: Josh Dela Cruz & Donovan Patton
Blue's Big City Adventure Interview: Josh Dela Cruz & Donovan Patton

ComingSoon Senior Editor Spencer Legacy spoke with Blue’s Big City Adventure stars Josh Dela Cruz and Donovan Patton about working together with Steve and inspiring kids. Blue’s Big City adventure is now available on streaming through Paramount+.

Blue’s Big City Adventure follows Josh, who gets the opportunity of a lifetime to audition for Rainbow Puppy’s Broadway musical, and Blue as they skidoo to New York City where they meet new friends and discover the magic of music, dance, and following one’s dreams,” reads the film’s synopsis. “The entire Blue’s Clues crew is reunited for this special movie event, with the beloved animated friends and all three hosts — Josh, Steve, and Joe — together for the first time in the Big Apple.”

Spencer Legacy: Josh, you have an extensive history with musicals and theater. What did it mean to get to do this movie and bring that passion for music to a younger audience?

Josh Dela Cruz: It’s an extremely personal story and something that I was just grateful that I was able to tell it and to be a part of it. A lot of moving pieces had to be in the right place for it to happen. People like BD Wong and Lea Salonga built the foundation for me to have a career on Broadway. It was so important for me to see an Asian American as a director because it’s not something that we typically see on Broadway. It’s very rare. I aspire to be a director in the future, so I really wanted BD to be the director. When he said yes, I was beside myself. After we worked with him, I remember the day after on set with him, we were texting back and forth — Steve, Donovan, and I — were like, “he’s so cool! He’s the nicest and he’s funny!” I hope that kids walk away from this show, even if they don’t want to be an actor, even if they don’t want to be a director, but just full of possibility. That’s what I hope that we inspire with this movie.

Donovan, you’ve acted and voiced in so many unique projects over the years with coming back to Blue’s Clues now and then. What’s it like to return for this full film?

Donovan Patton: Oh, it’s nothing but fun. I will work with these guys anytime. Any time I get to be on set with Josh and with Steve … the three of us strike a really good balance. I don’t quite know how to accurately describe the chemistry in terms of a chemical compound or something, but it works. What each of us individually kind of bring makes a really fun atmosphere on set. I think it really comes through in the movie too. For this movie, my favorite part of the whole thing … that almost feels selfish, that I get to enjoy it as much as it is. I think the joy comes through on screen. But being able to watch what Josh does in this movie, what Josh is capable of, fills me with boiling jealousy, first of all. Then when I get over that, I realize I’m just having a great time.

Josh, there are a lot of fun scenes in New York where you think an object is sentient and you see someone use it and you’re horrified. What was it like to film those?

Josh Dela Cruz: Oh, it’s all that you ever want to do as an actor, to be in a situation and then get to really ham it up. They’re some of my favorite things. Elf is one of my favorite movies of all time, and I definitely took cues from Will Ferrell in Elf. On top of that, Who Framed Roger Rabbit? Is a huge reference point for our show and our franchise. It was one of my favorite movies of all time growing up and is still to this day. So to be able to interact with Blue and all of our animated characters, but in a world that is very real and have them accept it as like, “oh yeah.” I mean, there’s a great scene where New Yorkers see Blue for the very first time, and it couldn’t be more true of how it would probably go down. It was a great time and I can’t wait for people to see it and for people to come back to New York and look at these landmarks and be like, “oh, and that’s where they filmed Blue’s Clues!”

Donovan, what’s it like to work with Josh and Steve, given you’ve all had this similar experience of being the host of Blue’s Clues, but you’ve all done it at very different periods of time? Is there a camaraderie there?

Donovan Patton: Oh, totally. We have a shared understanding, having done that. It’s such a unique thing to do in television or now in movies, essentially. Maybe people doing stuff on social media kind of might get a little bit close to it, but I don’t think they necessarily do, because it’s a rare thing when you speak to your audience and then you listen to your audience at the same time in real-time. So that starts off as a thing that we all understand, but they’re just so much fun to be around. Anytime we’re all together, we’re all three different ingredients that make a really good soup.

Josh, what was it like to sing with Ali Stroker and Taboo?

Josh Dela Cruz: Oh, I mean, come on! I was a fan of Taboo growing up. Taboo and the Black Eyed Peas really hit me hard because it was like, “Oh my gosh, look at this diverse music group. And everybody loves them and they’re making amazing, amazing music.” And to this day, Taboo is representing indigenous peoples everywhere and giving them a platform and it’s incredible. And writing about them in comic books! Growing up, you never saw yourself as a superhero. I never saw myself as a superhero. So to be able to work with somebody that inspired me when I was younger and that is inspiring me today is hugely impactful in the rest of my life and what I aspire to do with it. Ali Stroker — speaking of inspiring — I saw her on stage for the very first time in Spring Awakening, and it was at a point in my career where I wasn’t really being inspired by a lot of musical theater. Then I saw her in that and I felt rejuvenated. I was like, “that’s what I want to do. That’s how I want to interpret work.” And I hope that I’m able to come close to the type of personal work that she is able to just naturally do in any role that takes. So [a] huge learning experience for me.

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