In Wes Anderson’s stop-motion-animated Fantastic Mr. Fox (out Friday), Bill Murray stars as the voice of Clive Badger, the titular Mr. Fox’s lawyer and adviser. Vulture was lucky enough to get a few minutes with the always-delightful actor at the after party at the Rouge Tomate following last night’s New York premiere of the film, during which we asked what preparations he undertook to play Fox’s badger, and if he could provide us with any info on the possibly upcoming Ghostbusters 3. He was happy to oblige, sort of!
May I ask you some questions for New York Magazine?
How did you get into the mindset of a badger?
Oh, oh, I don’t know. I really wanted to play him like a Wisconsin guy. I wanted to play him with a Wisconsin accent, but the director overruled me.
I don’t know why! I don’t think he understands Wisconsin. Like a lot of people!
I don’t get it, either.
Where are you from?
Oh. Well if I were to play him as a Lobo, you’d understand. But in Wisconsin, the mascot of the state of Wisconsin is the badger, so that’s how I got to that. And I think I was thinking of Chris Farley the week of it or something, and I think I was thinking, you know, it’s time for a Wisconsin accent to make itself known.
I heard you weren’t happy with plans for Ghostbusters 3.
I haven’t seen the script, so it’s not a matter of being happy or not.
Do you want to do the movie?
I don’t know. It’s all about the script. If the script’s not good, I’m not going to get excited. They’ve been talking about it for a long time. So, you know, I don’t get all excited about it, you know.
Dan Aykroyd told me it’s going to be two guys and two girls.
That sounds like a weekend, but I don’t know if it’s a movie.
What age do you think the new Ghostbusters should be?
Oh, I don’t know. I don’t know what they’re talking about. It’s just talk. No one’s sent me a script. I haven’t seen anything. [Dan Aykroyd] is more out there. He’s a much more active guy than I am. I’m sluggish.
You don’t want to do it?
I mean, I like those guys. But it’s all about if the stuff is good. The stuff’s got to be great.
And back to Mr. Fox: Did you feel like the badger was a good fit?
I was lucky to get in there. This suited me enough. He’s a kind of a burly, tough, hard-knuckled guy.
Is there another animal you related to more?
No, no. They’re all part of the great manifestation, the great animal kingdom, you know.
Did you know the book?
No, I’d never read it before. Just knew Roald Dahl a little.
[He walks away. But we managed to catch him a few minutes later … ]
You’re not going to get creepy now, are you? Because it sure looks creepy to me.
You and Wes Anderson went to a farmhouse together …
That’s old news! It’s in the newspapers. Read about it in the papers!