Have you ever been excited about meeting someone, only to meet them and realize they aren’t as great as you thought? Considering how much I had been wanting to meet Vin Diesel, I was hoping that wasn’t the case when I met him during our Guardians Of The Galaxy interview. Thankfully, it wasn’t. Vin Diesel was A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!!!!!!  It was one of the best and most fun interviews I have had the pleasure of being part of.

Group photo with Vin Diesel

From the moment he walked into the room with that big smile and spoke in “that voice” he made the interview seem to fly by. He was so personable and fun, I was just trying to take it all in. Honestly, meeting Vin Diesel surpassed everything I could have imagined! You can read about my experience meeting him here (because it merited its own post).

When he walks into a room of applause he says…

Wow look at this wonderful reception. You guys! You didn’t have to make me feel that good. My God! This is like…I need to walk in again.

and he so he walked back out and back in again to even more hoot and hollering than the first time. After that he got settled into his chair and the interview officially began.

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Here’s what Vin Diesel had to say about his role as Groot in Guardians Of The Galaxy…

What do you love about Groot, and what attracted you to the role of Groot?

First of all, the people that get the most credit for me playing Groot are those people on my Facebook page. Because they manifested this union between myself and Marvel when nobody had an idea of what we could do.

As you know, I had to shoot “Fast and the Furious 7” a little bit longer than anticipated. And there was really no schedule to be able to do a six-month role. And the persistence of the social media somewhat forced us all to be really creative.

Kevin Feige called me and said, “I’m gonna tell you about this character. Don’t think I’m crazy. I hope you will like it. I’m going to send you over some conceptual art.” So, someone delivers this huge book of conceptual art for “The Guardians of the Galaxy.” and it’s the first time that I had ever seen what they were doing with Groot, which is not like anything you have ever seen in any of the comic books. It’s an original Groot. I went into the living room, and the kids were there, and I opened up the book and it was a double-truck picture with all of the characters. And I said to the kids, “What character do you think they want Daddy to play?” and I was asking them, and they answered in seconds. I was praying that they would lead me in feeling good about this role. And they all pointed to Groot, and they thought Groot was cool.

What’s the best thing about playing Groot?

The best thing about having played this role is something I never would have anticipated as an actor. I never would’ve seen this coming. I knew when I did the voice of Iron Giant that it would be cool for my kids to say “my dad is the Iron Giant.” But I didn’t anticipate what the effect would be from playing Groot, and this is what it’s been.

…whenever they (his kids) see trees they say, “Look, Dad. It’s your brothers and sisters.” You can’t beat that. I mean, nothing I would try to teach them about life and respect for nature could have been as effective as them seeing Daddy as Groot…and how appropriate. What a beautiful thing. And something you would never even think is possible. I mean, we’ve never seen trees in that light…I never thought I’d be so proud of it. But you know, in some ways, Groot is nature’s ambassador, and there’s something beautiful about that…for me, movies should promote or provoke conversation. It’s been really special.

…They will never look at a tree the same way. No one will, after this.

Thoughts on doing a family friendly film

I do movies that are not necessarily for kids. So, to do this and to be able to share this with the little ones, and for them to be so excited about it and so proud of it, and to think of trees differently.

What was it like recording the voice of Groot?

I went into the recording booth as a seven-and-a-half foot tree, in essence. I was wearing jumping stilts while I was recording…Kinda crazy. They had to adjust the mic, and they had never had to do that before. It was pretty intense. It was one of those things that I started doing last year…sometimes, you just need one thing, or a few things, that get you into character, that get you into the spirit of the character and what I wanted to do is be seven-and-a-half feet tall.

Was that your choice to go in dressed as the character? And how long did it take you?

Well, I really kept it about kind of being this towering kind of innocent character. The innocence of the character is what’s so attractive. So, yeah. It was my idea to go above and beyond. And I guess people were like, “Damn, this guy’s taking this serious. It’s only three words, dude.”…I have worked more days on this than I have words.

Besides “Fast and the Furious 7,” do you have any projects coming up that we can see you in?

I am about to do a movie called “The Last Witch Hunter” about a 700-year old New Yorker. I feel sometimes like I’m close to 700 years old. It is going to be very cool, and we just cast Michael Caine..it’s always a big deal when I get to work with people that I’ve been such fans of for so long. So I’m just so excited to see what happens when the camera starts rolling, and it’s me and Michael Caine. You just know it’s gonna be good.

At this point the interview is technically over and as we are walking out to take a group photo he starts singing “Hooked On a Feeling”…

He also went on to say “I love the mommy bloggers. You know mommies are the first super heroes you guys.”

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Do you see why I am a fan????

Be sure to go and see Groot in Guardians of the Galaxy in theaters on 8/1 AND be sure to check back here for more Guardians of the Galaxy interviews with Zoe Saldana, Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista and James Gunn.

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