Interview: Mila Kunis of 'Ted'
'Listen, I knew what I was getting myself into...'
It is rare to find that starlet whose dark eyes and Mona Lisa smile hide impeccable timing and amazing comedy skills; Mila Kunis, though, is that actor. After years on "That '70s Show," Kunis seems to have found her feet with the one-two punch of her work in "Black Swan" and this week's "Ted," playing the long-time, long-suffering girlfriend of Mark Wahlberg's John, whose best friend is a magical, talking reprobate stuffed bear. We spoke with Kunis in L.A. about working with Wahlberg and MacFarlane, the bear who wasn't there and her own stuffed friendships ...
MSN Movies: You've been working with Mr. MacFarlane for twelve years on "Family Guy." What was it like watching someone you've known and worked with for so long take this big step and execute it so well?
Mila Kunis: I couldn't be any prouder of him. I think he's so brilliant and is cabable of doing so much more than people ever knew he was, and "Ted" is just the beginning of Seth MacFarlane in feature film.
What's really funny is that your character is in this sort of love triangle; the third point of it is a stuffed bear. When you read the script were you just thinking, "This is pretty much exactly what I hoped for?"
Yes. Listen, I knew what I was getting myself into. It's not like I thought, "I didn't know there's a talking teddy bear in this movie." I knew what it was doing. I thought that was great.
When you found out that you were working with Mr. Wahlberg again; "Max Payne," your previous collaboration, not a comedy.
Not intentionally. Was it good to work with him on something so purely comedic and so much fun?
Yeah. Him and I worked on "Date Night" together -- not together-together, but we were on the same project together -- and yeah I love working with Mark. I'd work with him again.
When you think of him, you think he's this dramatic guy, this hyper-tense guy. Yet he's really funny and he's really warm in this.
He's really funny and warm in real life. He's very shy. He's a family guy. Mark is like a guy's guy, but he's very sweet. He's got a solid sense of humor, and he's willing to do anything for a joke. You have to respect a guy for that.
The scene where you meet and he's dancing badly and knocks you over and you get some cranial trauma and he's icing your forehead, there's all these great little wordless acting moments in it. How fun is it to just do those kinds of intense scenes with another actor who's equally prepared?
Well, I think that so much acting is reacting. That's what you do. A lot of times you get very little dialogue, and you can say so much without saying anything. A lot of it has to do with how MacFarlane put this movie together. Mark and I have a great time working together, whether it's with words or no words. I don't know it was fun.
How hard was it to focus on a bear that wasn't there for your scenes?
For me, it wasn't so bad. Mark had to have physical reactions with the bear. I didn't. My interaction with Ted was very circumstantial -- where the bear is, to the left or to the right or across from there walking across the room or getting to bed. I didn't actually have to be physical with it, so it wasn't so bad.
Your favorite stuffed animal as a kid?
When I was nine years old I got my favorite bear. I still have her. I don't sleep with my bear, but I have my bear.
And that bear's name is?
(Purses lips, shakes head, makes negative 'Mmmm-mmmm' sound.)
Secret. Well played ...
("Ted" opens this week.)