Interview with Leandro Hassum, who plays Gru

One of the most traditional selling tricks in today’s movie market, choosing celebrities to dub animations has become a topic of discussion on the Brazilian internet for some years now. Not least because dubbing has become a fashionable tool, of course, with professionals gaining fans and specific works being praised as part of today’s nostalgia, but also for the instances of noise in those choices that have marked the public’s imagination.

just quote rolled up that many already remember the trauma of the participation of Luciano Huck in Disney’s animated dub, for example, but the issue seems to have moved beyond an isolated misfortune into a topic in its own right. Just to stay with the same distributor, hard to forget the media case that has become the choice of Fabio Porchat give a voice to Olaf Frozen an icy adventure – in particular in the way in which the actor had to publicly demonstrate his commitment to the work – or, more recently, in the marketing work involved in the announcement that Marcos Mion would replace Guilherme Briggs as the voice of Buzz Lightyear in the character’s solo film.

The entire current outcome of the marketing versus dubbing debate may seem like an anomaly from a historical perspective, and a good example of this might be Leandro Hassum and my favorite evil. The actor and comedian has been the voice of protagonist Gru in the Illumination animated franchise since 2010, remaining in the role even after the release of three films and two spin-offs.

Many things have changed during these twelve years, especially on Hassum’s side. The artist is no longer known for his partnership with Marcius Melhem in stick guys – which earned him the invitation to the first my favorite evilby the way – to become an export powerhouse of Brazilian comedy, with the right to own both a highly successful box office franchise (Until luck do us part) and the most-watched domestic and original Netflix film on the platform, Christmas All the best for the coming Christmas.

What then explains the artist’s attachment to the character? Passion, above all. During a conversation with Omelette promote the new film of the franchise, Minions 2: Origin of GruHassum does not hesitate to declare on numerous occasions his passion for the world of dubbing and the role he plays, even mentioning having “a huge affection” for the villain who became a father – even if many no longer realize his credit.

A lot of people don’t know that I do“, says the actor in the interview; “How my voice is so different when I’m doing Gru, people don’t know, and then sometimes someone goes, ‘Oh my God! You are the Gru! I like!‘”. The dedication is such that he remembers the many occasions when the public ignored the information that he was also responsible for the dubbing of Dru, the brother of the protagonist presented in Despicable Me 3: “A lot of people don’t know that I’m playing Dru either. They think they are two actorshe says, immediately playing with the affectionate way he handles these situations.

Hassum’s long experience with the character has also given him a very broad experience of the voice acting craft, especially because the character has changed over the years. “I’m a guy who learned to dub, so I can do it and already understand a little more what the director wantsis reflected in the conversation; “ANDI can sometimes dub without looking at the screen – which is what professional dubbers do, just look at the number where the speech starts to get the musicality – and you get more intimacy”. Despite the progress, the actor is adamant that “the difficulty is always the same», especially with advances in animation: «it’s getting better and better technologically, so sometimes you sync things like screams, screams, sound details inside…”.

In the particular case of this second minions, the biggest challenge was creating a specific identity for the voice of Gru as a child, which for the artist was mostly about preserving the character in the process. “We worked to not lose the characteristic of Gru, but we softened the voice“, Explain ; “I was looking for something that is what changes in the voice, that pre-adolescent moment when the voice begins to change. Then sometimes it’s softer, in something more delicate for the voice, and sometimes there’s this escapade”.

At this time, one can see the affection Hassum so often says he has for the profession, but not just in the details of the job he tells the interviewer. When answering, the voice actor makes sure to include the voice director Manolo Rey credits for successfully finding young Gru’s tone of voice, as well as reinforcing that Rey is “a wonderful person who, for those who don’t know, is also the voice of Spider-Man”. A wonder that comes from within, from an inner child who, after all these years of work, still finds a smile in the small pieces of information.

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