10 questions on Disney’s Big Hero 6 with Daniel Henney

The actor voiced Baymax’s creator, Tadashi, in Disney’s newest animation feature 

10 questions on Disney’s Big Hero 6 with Daniel Henney


Photos and videos: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Singapore

If you haven’t heard of Disney’s Big Hero 6, you must have been hiding under a Baymax or really big rock. After opening on our little red dot on November 13, it has gone on to do even better than last year’s hit film Frozen.

Disney’s latest animated feature revolves around a teenage robotics prodigy, Hiro, who forms a superhero team to stand up against a masked villain.

The inflatable robot Baymax was originally programmed to be a personal healthcare companion but ends up having to suit up and join forces with the rest of the crew to ensure that good triumphs over evil.

The crew of voice actors includes Ryan Potter as Hiro, Scott Adsit as Baymax and Daniel Henney as Tadashi, Hiro’s older brother and Baymax’s creator.

10 questions on Disney’s Big Hero 6 with Daniel Henney


While we unfortunately can’t gift you of a Baymax of your own (we’d actually like one too), we have an exclusive hamper of Big Hero 6 merchandise (worth S$360) to give away. It includes a Big Hero 6 poster autographed by Daniel Henney, a 10-inch figurine of Baymax, a kid’s T-shirt, a Baymax flying kite, Baymax plastic pouch, lenticular notebook, Go Go’s flying disk, canvas backpack and Big Hero 6 art book.

Simply answer the following question and the best answer will be picked to win.

Question: In 50 words or less, tell us which character from Big Hero 6 you like best and why.

Contest ends December 5 and the winner will be notified via email. *Terms and conditions apply

Read on to find out about Daniel Henney’s thoughts on the movie, which other character he would have loved to voice (hint: it’s big, white and everyone loves him) and more.

10 questions on Disney’s Big Hero 6 with Daniel Henney


What did you like about “Big Hero 6” when you first read the script?

Daniel: Honestly I didn't get a script.  I'm not sure how it normally works with voice-over work, but I was given a basic plot synopsis and then I went to meet with the directors and producers.  From that point on, they basically verbally described the film's premise and the character to me.  I was on board immediately.  After a pretty intense audition session, the deal was done and I started soon after that.  I mean, being a Disney fan my whole life and coming from a small town, far away from California...this was nothing short of a dream come true for me.  A definite no brainer, a progressive, fun, heartfelt and incredibly well made film with enough positive messages within to steer people of all ages the right direction.  

Can you please tell us a bit about the audition process and how you felt when you got the role?

The audition process was intense but also incredibly rewarding and fun.  I've been working on TV and in film for a long time now and sometimes you can fall into certain technical rhythms as an actor.  Going through this audition process reminded me of the fun I used to have working on stage in New York City when I was first starting.  It was a very freeing experience.  When they called and told me I'd gotten the part I almost didn't believe them at first.  If I remember right, I think it took them a couple weeks to call me, which is generally longer than usual.  So I think I'd kind of given up on it, and then one day the call came.  It was amazing!

What was your experience in the recording booth like – did you enjoy it or find it strange?

I completely loved the experience.  As I said before it really took me back to the days of doing improv. and being on stage in New York.  There are really no rules, and Don and Chris (Directors) were so incredibly supportive of anything I wanted to try as an actor that I actually left each session feeling like I should have paid THEM for my time...it was like therapy for me.  

 

Can you please tell us about your character Tadashi?

Tadashi is a young man, but he's a REAL man in every sense of the word.  An amazing soul, a kind and gentle heart, and he has so much love for his little brother Hiro.  After tragedy strikes him and his brother at a young age, Tadashi takes it upon himself to become sort of a father figure for his younger brother.  He's Hiro's "ROCK".....his protector, and role model.  When Hiro starts to go down potentially dangerous roads, Tadashi is there just in the nick of time put him back on track.  Tadashi is also the glue that brings this amazingly talented group of young inventors together.  A very talented inventor himself (he created Baymax), Tadashi has respect from all his peers and it’s eventually because of their love and friendship with Tadashi, that they love Hiro in the same way.  

Can you tell us a bit about your Korean heritage and if you used any of these experiences to inspire your characterisation of “Tadashi”?

I'm half Korean and half Irish.  I grew up in a small farm town in Michigan, an only child.  I don't know that I actively applied any of my personal past experiences into the "Tadashi creation".  I can only say that as Asian Americans I feel that we all share a common fabric, and also have experienced similar feelings and issues with our respective identities growing up here.  I've always had a chip on my shoulder and have always been very driven to achieve what I know I'm capable of in my life.  I've never been good at taking "no" for an answer, nor am I talented at keeping my mouth shut when I feel that I'm in the right.  I believe that Tadashi may share similar characteristics with me in that respect.  

What was your favourite scene in “BIG HERO 6”?

I do love the ENTIRE movie, which is not something I usually say about a film....especially one that I'm in. (haha)....But I think my favourite scene is when we first get a real taste of Baymax's "superhero potential" in his new red suit.  I LOVE that entire montage.....getting to see the character's powers, and watching Hiro's first "real" flight with Baymax around San Fransokyo.  It's just incredible.  

How did it feel watching an animated character with your voice?

SURREAL. Weird in a good way. Hard to process at first, but it got easier the second and third time I watched it. I only hope that everyone is happy with the performance. It's just such an honor to be part of the Disney family, to be that character forever.  I'm a very lucky guy.  

If you had to voice one of the other characters in “BIG HERO 6”, who would you choose and why?

Hmmm....that’s a tough question. I guess I would have to say Baymax.  I was doing an interview with Scott Adsit who voices Baymax in the film.  I thought it was very interesting because he said that no matter how difficult of day he was having, or if he wasn't feeling well or in a bad mood.....every time he came in to play Baymax, he left the voiceover room with a sense of peace and wellbeing.  He said that he just felt so amazing being able to play someone/something that "pure and innocent".  I think I'd like to give that shot.  

Are you a Disney Animation fan and do you have any favourite films or characters?

Of course.  I love many Disney and Pixar films.  From Dumbo to Peter Pan...the list goes on and on.  For me however, I have my favourites narrowed down to two.  “Wall-E”, or "The Fox and the Hound”.  As an overall film experience I'd have to go with “The Fox and the Hound” because I was very young when I saw it the first time and it made such an incredibly lasting impression on me.  However, character-wise, I'd have to go with “Wall-E”.....I love that little bot.  

Why should people go and see “Big Hero 6” in cinemas?

I could go on and on about all of the positive messages in this film.  I could talk for days about its beauty and how amazing it looks as an artistic piece.  I could also speak endlessly about the diversity of the cast and how uniquely different and intelligent these beautiful characters are…but the real answer and REAL QUESTION should be this.  ‘Why SHOULD'T people go watch “Big Hero 6”?’.......and the answer is......I can't think of ONE single reason.  It's one of the best films I've ever seen.  

Disney’s Big Hero 6 is now showing in cinemas.

WATCH: Daniel Henney’s greeting for Singapore & Disney’s Big Hero 6 trailer

WATCH: Behind-the-scenes with Daniel Henney recording for Disney’s Big Hero 6

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