May 5, 2017
This must be an exciting and, at the same time, nail-biting time to be screenwriters Cinco Paul and Ken Daurio. They are the creative minds behind what is widely anticipated as one of this summer’s great animated thrill rides, Despicable Me. It’s a 3D film that turns the supervillain concept on its ear, first by making the bad guy the star of the movie, and then by making him sympathetic—sort of.
CINCO PAUL audio excerpt: "What Ken and I do is talk about the next 30-page chunk. We divide up the scenes, write on our own, bring them together and read them. The goal is: can you make the other guy laugh? It is crucial to try to outdo the other guy."
Despicable Me has a great many connections to greatness, starting with Steve Carrell as the despicable one himself, Gru. He’s just the icing on a aural cake, however, leading a cast that includes Jason Segel, Russell Brand, Will Arnett, Ken Jeong, Miranda Cosgrove, Kristen Wiig, Julie Andrews, Mindy Kaling and Jack McBrayer. That’s the exciting part.
The nail-biting part? That would be following on the heels of Toy Story 3, which was released a month ahead of Despicable Me and won both critical raves and box office gold. Will audiences excited by the story and technical achievements of Woody and Buzz be tempted to come back for something in the same vein but different? If you were going to take a chance in this genre, putting your money on Cinco Paul and Ken Daurio is probably a good bet. Their last film was Horton Hears a Who! Based on the beloved children’s story. It grossed a reported $300 million, worldwide. And they’re already at work on adapting another Dr. Seuss tale, The Lorax.