THE ROAD TO ELDORADO
About The Production
No one can say for certain whether El
Dorado is pure invention or a myth borne of the truth, but the legend of this
lost city of gold has endured for over 500 years. Now DreamWorks Pictures takes
audiences on a musical adventure to this fabled land, with the unlikeliest of
guides—a pair of hapless miscreants named Tulio and Miguel.
Executive producer Jeffrey Katzenberg
reveals that the central characters of Tulio and Miguel have their roots in the
scene-stealing sidekicks found in virtually every animated favorite.
"Having made these movies for a number of years now, I've always thought
it would be a great idea to take what would ordinarily be the secondary
characters—the dysfunctional losers, the comic relief—and send them off on
some big adventure of their own."
"The flawed, but funny supporting
characters are often the most interesting," director Don Paul concurs.
"A main objective of this film was to break the mold of the typical heroic
leading men with two scoundrels, who are anything but typical heroes."
The filmmakers add that the inspiration
for Tulio and Miguel could also be found in the classic Hope & Crosby road
movies and other popular buddy films over the years.
"The buddy relationship is the very
heart of the story," says producer Bonne Radford. "They need each
other because they're both pretty inept. They're opposites—Tulio is the
schemer and Miguel is the dreamer. Their camaraderie adds to the adventure; you
almost don't need to know where they're going or what they're after,
because the fun is in the journey."
The fun was also in recording the journey,
owing mostly to Kevin Kline and Kenneth Branagh, the award-winning actors who
gave voice to Tulio and Miguel respectively.
Producer Brooke Breton notes, "We
brought them together to record, which is unusual in animation, and it was a
delight. They had such a great time, and their energy and creativity elevated
each other's performances."
"Kevin and Kenneth are such great
talents and each have an incredible sense of humor: Ken is very dry and witty;
and Kevin is a natural comedian. They had such terrific chemistry, and it was
marvelous to put them together and see what happened. We were able to
incorporate a lot of their personalities in their characters, because, like
Tulio and Miguel, they are something of an odd couple," Katzenberg says.
Kenneth Branagh remarks, "Tulio and
Miguel are a great combination and it was fun to play that relationship opposite
Kevin. Miguel is a romantic, who adores adventure and excitement. He's a good
foil for Tulio, who, by contrast, is much more of a cynic."
"Miguel is the idealist, and Tulio is
the more earth-bound realist, so together they form one entire half-wit,"
Kevin Kline quips. "Tulio is always finding himself in these terrible life
and death predicaments—often because of Miguel—but I think he really loves
wheedling his way out of them. He's an actor in a way; life for him is a giant
That improvisational quality was perfect
for each actor's approach to his role. "Kenneth could go to the mike and
immediately give me 15 separate interpretations of a single line. He's
amazing," director Eric "Bibo" Bergeron notes. "Any nuance
we could possibly have needed was in the performance he delivered. For his part,
Kevin would con
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