'Despicable Me 2' Cast on the Crowded Cartoon Summer (Video)

Rebecca Ford
'Despicable Me 2' Cast on the Crowded Cartoon Summer (Video)

Despicable Me 2, hitting theaters on Wednesday, brings those zany, gibberish-speaking minions back to the big screen, along with their fearless leader, Gru.

Voiced by Steve Carell, Gru is a former villain who is now being recruited to help sniff out other bad guys hiding in society.

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Despicable Me 2 is just one of several animated films hitting theaters this summer, in what looks like the most crowded cartoon season at the box office in recent memory.

When The Hollywood Reporter sat down with the stars of Universal's sequel, we picked their brains about the plethora of animated pics in theaters, and if there can ever be too much.

"Animation now is so realistic and so true to life and there's so much depth of it," says Carell. "You see this movie, and you feel like you're watching real people. They are like people from a parallel universe. They don't look exactly like us, they don't speak exactly like us, but they seem to be alive."

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Benjamin Bratt, who plays the villainous El Macho in Universal's pic, is new to the franchise. He agrees that there can't be too much of a good thing when it comes to movies.

"My feeling is, if something is good, it's going to find it's audience," he says.

He adds the the Despicable films provide entertainment for both children and adults. "There's an alchemy there that balances this really subversive, acerbic humor with a real tenderness," he says.

Many of the actors reminisced about their favorite animated films from childhood, and how far animation has come since then.

"Disney animation was so different than the 3D animation we have," says Carell. "It was beautiful in its own way, it felt very much like drawings and art work."

As for what Carell's character Gru would watch, Carell says he'd prefer the best villains on the big screen.

"He'd watch whatever his kids were watching," he says. "I bet he'd be a big fan of Fantasia. I bet he'd be a big fan of Sleeping Beauty. He'd get into some of those darker, scarier characters."

Despicable Me 2 hits theaters on July 3.

Watch THR's interview with the cast above.

E-mail: Rebecca.Ford@thr.com
Twitter: @Beccamford