Saturday, June 30, 2012

Mark Wahlberg interviewed by Men's Fitness

Here is an interview with Mark from Men's Fitness. He talks about putting on weight for movie roles, how his kids have influenced him, the importance of God in his life and more.

Mark Wahlberg had blood on his arm when he arrived on set in Miami for our cover shoot, and he didn't even realize it. As we were chatting prior to getting set up, I pointed to the spot on his forearm and said, "Tough scene today?" He shrugged, smiled, and grabbed a tissue to wipe away the crimson. "It's makeup," he chuckled.

I won't lie; I was a little disappointed. I'm not a sadist, but showing up to a shoot bleeding is the equivalent of finishing a race on a broken foot. On the other hand, I also wasn't surprised I believed it was real. That's the thing about the 41-year-old actor and star of the upcoming comedy Ted (about a crude teddy bear come to life, and the brainchild of Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane): He's believable in everything he does. Funky Bunch frontman? We bought it. Calvin Klein model? Sold. Tough guy? Definitely. Funny? For sure. Award-winning leading man? No question about it.

Whatever Mark Wahlberg does, he does well—and if you've been paying attention, he does a lot. Actor, entrepreneur, producer, philanthropist, husband, and father—there doesn't seem to be a role he can't fill with relative ease. For his MF cover story, he almost interviewed himself.

"What do you want to talk about?" Wahlberg asked when we sat down. Celebrities don't ask you that. This approach is all too rare, but it served to open a door to something different—something, perhaps, that hasn't been said for a man about whom so much has already been written. I was ecstatic to let him take the wheel and tell me what he wanted me to say about the things he thinks are important. As ever, Wahlberg didn't disappoint.

"I don't even know what cool is anymore!" The statement, totally unprompted, is indicative of a man who knows his past—and his place in the world. It's also quite telling of his actually being a lot cooler than even he thinks he is. And, truthfully, Wahlberg really is cool.

He's not Marky-Mark cool. He's not Dirk Diggler cool. He's Mark Wahlberg cool—a reflection of everything he's done and the work ethic he employs, as well as everywhere he's been and the experiences he's learned from along the way. "I can't forget where I came from," he told me, lacking any of the pretension that could be layered in such a statement.

Born in the Dorchester section of Boston, Mass., seasoned with a checkered youth that saw him split his time equally between the backseat of squad cars and secluded makeout spots with members of the opposite sex, Wahlberg had been the bad boy and played the role well. But that's not who he is right now: "I try to be as respectful as possible. My wife and little girls expect it of me," Wahlberg says.

He doesn't lament his past, but he is intensely aware of it, and it's likely the main catalyst, along with raising his four children, for his creation of the Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation. "Too many kids have fallen through the cracks," he remarked to me with a sincerity that a presidential candidate would envy.

"I wouldn't be able to sleep at night if I had this amazing life and didn't give back." And indeed he does give back. The Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation alone has raised more than $1 million since its inception.

For his role as pro boxer Micky Ward in The Fighter, he employed a heavy dose of fight training—a style he now uses to work himself into shape for every role. "There's really nothing more demanding than boxing training," he says, noting that slimming down for Ted "meant playing basketball and doing serious cardio."

Wahlberg's seamless transition from serious action roles into comedy doesn't surprise anyone these days—especially Ted's director, Seth MacFarlane. "Mark is really the only guy who could play this role," the Family Guy creator told me during a phone interview, sounding a lot like Brian Griffin.

MacFarlane went on to say that he wanted Wahlberg for the lead actor in his directorial debut because the role "required the delicacy of a comedic performance that would be funny but wouldn't take it too far into the unreal." In fact, according to MacFarlane, "Mark gives a hilarious performance that's vulnerable and real."

The tone on set was one of collaboration and good humor. MacFarlane noted that Wahlberg and Mila Kunis did "a lot of laughing together." The bottom line for MacFarlane, and studio execs, however, has to be that, as MacFarlane himself told me, "Mark made the difference between this movie sinking or swimming."

Wahlberg is very proud of the film, though he downplays his own performance in favor of simply saying that he believes "Ted will reach a much larger audience than any of my other films because it's a very creative project that will surprise a lot of people."

He also downplays the massive transformation he had to undergo for his upcoming role in Pain and Gain (about a pair of real-life Florida bodybuilders trapped in an extortion ring). "I had two months to get into shape for the role, I was pounding heavy weight, and I packed on about 40 pounds for it," Wahlberg told me, also mentioning that he crafted his own program to gain the muscle.

All told, he went from 165 pounds to a thick 205, likely his most muscular ever. He used his preparation for the role as a challenge to best his efforts in years past: "I wanted to surpass the goals I had when I was younger—right now I'm benching 335."

But he's also keenly aware that the demands on his body to maintain such size greatly increase his risk for injuries. He hopes in the future to always "stay around 180-to-185 [pounds], train regularly with athletic moves, and have no real aches and pains at all." He'll be on that path at the time you're reading this, as he's leaning down again for the upcoming film 2 Guns with Denzel Washington.

Wahlberg's ability to morph into fitting into the clothing of all these characters is as impressive as his ability to be believable in all the roles. When I said as much, he thanked me—but not in the typical Hollywood "I know I'm awesome, but I shouldn't say it, so "I'm glad you did" demeanor you'd expect.

He stopped, thought for a second, and said, "I've always wanted to try to do it all. Right now, I'm shooting 12 hours per day, I go to bed early, get up at 4 a.m. to train, then I eat, take my supplements, spend some time on my lines, and get to work." He concluded the stream of consciousness simply by saying, "Hard work does pay off.

Truly a sentiment that the Mark Wahlberg many people like to talk about—the high school kid with an attitude—invoke on a routine basis because it highlights who he was.

And, indeed, you can tell his story as a dramatic turnaround, as many already have. But when you talk to Wahlberg, you can tell that the man he was certainly isn't who he is now, and that he hasn't been that kid in a very long time.

This is a seasoned, smart, savvy businessman who won't be acting for life—unless he chooses to. His evolution to becoming this powerhouse didn't happen overnight, but it's past transition now. There are no lurking skeletons in the closet or hidden secrets that will take him back to who he was.

In many ways, however, the reinvention of Mark Wahlberg and ultimately who he is today is vastly more impressive than any of his roles or anything he has done in his colorful past. "I start every day on my hands and knees in prayer," Wahlberg told me, eyeing me to see if I'd be a cynic or at all skeptical about the statement. I wasn't.

In fact, Wahlberg is clearly not playing the part of a devout Roman Catholic; it really is a big part of his life. Staying quiet, he could sense I was leaving it open for him to unpack the statement, especially in light of his youthful image and current roles where he carries more guns than rosaries.

He recounted an all-too-common story of being a kid who didn't have an option about attendance at Sunday mass, but now he openly says, "God is more important [in my life] now." He didn't preach it at all—he was just honest enough to say it, which is something many in the public eye stay away from. And maybe the Wahlberg of old, or many of his contemporaries, would sidestep being honest about something that personal, but as with anything in his life at the present time, he endeavors to be, as he told me, "as real as possible."

And that's exactly who Mark Wahlberg really is, a genuine article who has been through as much in life as he has onscreen and someone who has grown as a man and outside of the shadow of a persona.

I asked him if he had undergone any of these changes as a result of being a father. It was a soft question, but his answer was disproportionately intense. "Having daughters made me a real man," he told me with the tone of a dad who values being a protector and role model. It makes sense and seems to be a reflection of his current image in the public eye.

"I don't think about my public image," he said, almost anticipating my next question, "I can't control it. I just try to do the right thing." And he's very aware of making sure he's doing the right thing—so much so that when I was thanking him for taking the time to sit and talk (for much longer than anyone had promised—no doubt to the dismay of any handlers, producers, or the like), he asked me if there was anything else I needed to know.

It was a broad enough question that I figured I could answer with an equally broad query: "Who is the real Mark Wahlberg?" I asked. His answer didn't surprise me and had no hyperbole attached to it: "The real Mark Wahlberg is the most blessed individual ever, a devoted servant of God, humble with a huge appreciation for everything, and a hard worker."

Friday, June 29, 2012

Listen to Mark Wahlberg on Paul and Young Ron

Mark Wahlberg talked with Paul and Young Ron this morning. They talk about the basketball, "Ted" and more. Listen to the audio below.

Listen to Mark Wahlberg on Rock 105.3

Mark Wahlberg did an interview with Rock 105.3. Listen to the audio below. You'll have to fast forward to about 17 minutes for where they start talking about Mark, and 22 minutes for the actual interview.

Listen to Mark Wahlberg Interview With Mark And Mercedes

Mark was was on-air with Mark and Mercedes on Mix 94.1 this morning.

Click here to listen!

KS1075 talks with Mark Wahlberg

Mark Wahlberg did an interview with the KS1075 Morning Show to talk about "Ted" and more. Here is the audio:

Listen to Mark Wahlberg on the Dave Ryan Show

Mark did an interview on the Dave Ryan Show on KDWB this morning. Mark talks about his days as a bachelor, how he taped "Ted" without someone there and more. Here is the audio:

Watch Mark Wahlberg on Conan

Here are some clips of Mark Wahlberg on the Conan show last night:

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Mark Wahlberg's interview with Machinima

Machinima interviewed Mark and other cast members from "Ted". Mark talks about smoking "weed" in the movie, Boston accents and more.

Video courtesy of machinima

Mark talks about fight in 'Ted'

Mark talks about doing a fight scene with Ted in this video clip from MTV News:

Mark Wahlberg's interview with VH1

Here is a short interview clip from VH1 in which Mark talks about challenges when filming Ted.

Mark Wahlberg talks to USA Today

Mark Wahlberg was interviewed in a recent article from USA Today.

BURBANK, Calif. – Mark Wahlberg stares at the motorcycle helmet at his feet, contemplating wearing it during an appearance on Conan O'Brien's talk show.

Someone backstage bet him $20 he wouldn't, and Wahlberg is weighing the shock value. "I ought to just run out with it on and freak him out," he says of the oblivious host. "He wouldn't know what to do."

A stagehand tells Wahlberg he's on in 10 seconds, and the star walks out sans headgear. But he was tempted.

"Especially in this business, if someone says you can't do something, you just want to do it more," Wahlberg says.
Even if it means dancing like a klutz, singing like a tone-deaf lounge act and wrestling a foul-mouthed teddy bear, all stunts he had to pull for Ted, a comedy that opens Friday.
The role seems an unlikely match for a guy who's cut like a boxer, swears like a sailor and did two months in a Boston jail for assault when he was a kid.
But the odd fit can suit Wahlberg. The 41-year-old father of four played a porn star in Boogie Nights, an anti-petroleum nut in I Heart Huckabees and a dense gumshoe in The Other Guys.
But Ted may be Wahlberg's largest on-screen leap yet. The story about a teddy bear who comes to life and becomes a fluffy nightmare (think Teddy Ruxpin on coke) initially struck Wahlberg as so outlandish that he declined on the concept alone.
"It was a little too out there," the two-time Oscar nominee says in Conan's green room, while waiting for Mitt Romney's five sons to finish their shtick. "I wasn't exactly looking to do a movie with a teddy bear."
But after meeting Ted director and Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane, his interest was piqued.
"Thirty pages in, and I was sold," says Wahlberg, who had never seen a Family Guy episode before taking the part. "It's really a story about friendship, relationships — you forget it's about a bear."
He grins, shakes his head, chuckles. He knows there's no escaping the film's hook. "Though (Ted) does do some crazy (stuff)."
That stuff includes snorting a lot of blow, inviting many a hooker to his apartment and getting randy with inanimate objects. Despite the tawdry antics, Wahlberg agreed to do the R-rated film as long as he didn't have to do three scenes: a clumsy dance number, singing a flat-note ballad at the Hollywood Bowl and a brawl with a teddy bear that leaves him with a crushed penis.
He wound up doing all three.
"What can I say?" Wahlberg says with a shrug. "Seth is a sweetheart and a smart guy. He's convincing."

Enjoy four clips from 'Ted'
A Hollywood multitasker
So, too, can be Wahlberg. For all the ridicule he's taken for being rapper Marky Mark and a Calvin Klein underwear model, Wahlberg has become one of Hollywood's most powerful fortysomethings.
Consider: Wahlberg has been nominated for two Oscars (a supporting-actor nomination for 2006's The Departed and a best-picture nomination for 2010's The Fighter, which he starred in and co-produced ). He's also produced more than two dozen titles, including HBO's Entourage and Boardwalk Empire. He's developing an Entourage movie, though no release date is set.
"He doesn't get enough credit for it, but Mark is a guy of a million different colors," MacFarlane says.
Still, MacFarlane concedes he was looking for the same hue most directors seek when they hire the Boston native: something dark.
"There really was a very short list of actors who could have played this part," MacFarlane says. "The idea of the bear's existence is ridiculous enough. The rest had to be realistic, and there aren't many guys who can pull off an R-rated comedy."
Adult themes, Wahlberg can do. He almost didn't get out of Boston's impoverished Dorchester neighborhood, where he clashed with cops and did two months on various theft and assault charges.

VIDEO: 'Ted' Hollywood premiere
Since then, Wahlberg has gained, if anything, a reputation as one of Hollywood's more conservative residents. He takes his family to Mass weekly, though he laments getting more scripts handed to him during service.
"The moment he comes on set, he feels like a big brother," says co-star Mila Kunis. "I just felt, if I ever needed it, he'd stand up for me."
After heavy turns as a boxer in The Fighter and a smuggler in this year's surprise winter hit Contraband ($67 million), Wahlberg says he was looking for lighter fare. He's a fan of hopscotching: After playing a soft-spoken mathematician in 2008's The Happening, Wahlberg says he took the action lead in Max Payne later that year "so I could blow (stuff) up."
Ted was nothing if not a change of pace, though its Hangover-style humor was a draw. He's done nearly three dozen films, not one of which he's allowed his children, ages 2 to 8, to watch. Though most of his films are too adult-themed for kids, one, he admits, is off-limits because he's embarrassed: 2001 remake Planet of the Apes remains one of his worst movie experiences.
"One of the kids saw it when we were flipping channels and said the monkeys looked funny," Wahlberg says. "I couldn't disagree."
Relating to a talking teddy
That's when Wahlberg swore off movies about talking animals.
But parenting, he says, has softened his view. His goal is to make a movie his kids can watch someday.
"The more I read (the script) and talked with Seth, the more I realized it's about trying to keep this balance between your friendship and your relationship," he says.
One of those relationships just happens to be with a computer-generated teddy bear. Wahlberg says that for all the film's silliness, Ted posed an acting first: working in CGI.
In every scene, the bear (voiced by MacFarlane) was inserted digitally after the rest was shot. Which meant nearly half of Wahlberg's scenes went without an actual co-star, including the heavily advertised fight between Ted and Wahlberg's character, John Bennett.
For that scene, Wahlberg gripped severed teddy bear arms and threw himself about a hotel room, emulating a brawl.
Wahlberg grins recounting the scene, one he thought he'd never do.
"It's a little freaky at first; I enjoy working with other actors," he says. "But you gotta push yourself. If you're not going to mix it up, you're not going to have fun."

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

MTV News talks to Mark Wahlberg

MTV News talked with Mark Wahlberg and they posted an article about Mark filming the movie "Ted".

Mark Wahlberg Happy To 'Look Stupid' For 'Ted'

No matter how hilarious and realistic the furry and foul-mouthed star of "Ted" might appear in the trailers and clips, the human stars of the film did not get an animated bear to physically act with: Instead, they had to rely on their own imaginations and "act with nothing" for much of filming.

When MTV News caught up with Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis recently during the film's press day, we asked them what acting skills they discovered or honed while making Seth MacFarlane's live-action debut.

"I've really found myself in a really comfortable position," Wahlberg shared. "I've always said that years ago I wouldn't have been able to do something like this: I was a little too self-conscious. And now, being a married father of four, I don't give a sh-- about what anyone thinks. So I'm just ready to get crazy, look stupid, come off as being ridiculous, and that's what acting is.

"I really admire — and I've seen it in some really young actors — coming from a musical background, coming from the street, always worrying about being cool, wanting to be perceived as hip, you don't want to do too many things that may make you look a little skeptical," he continued. "I remember when we were doing 'Four Brothers' and telling Tyrese and AndrĂ© Benjamin to look at Garrett Hedlund, and no matter how ridiculous he looked, he would still be willing to try anything, and I admired it."

Wahlberg went on to say that his total comfort in his own skin has come via different stages in his career and being able to take risks and that "Ted" — coming to theaters Friday — is a perfect fit for his mindset right now: "This is full-blown, ass in the air, not caring about anything," he said with a smile.
Wahlberg's love interest in the film is played by Mila Kunis, who was the first to admit that in terms of the difficulty of acting to nothing, she had the easy job.

"I didn't have it as hard as Mark did. Mark had it pretty rough because he had a lot of physical activities with the bear," she explained. "I just had to talk to an imaginary friend. You know sometimes when you're driving and you have conversations in your head? This was kind of like that except [done] outward.

"And I had MacFarlane in my ear through an earwig, so I didn't feel like I was talking to space necessarily. He was off to the side hooked up to a machine acting the bear out, and I was getting the feed into my ear."
Check out everything we've got on "Ted."

Mark Wahlberg on MTV After Hours

Mark was on MTV After Hours with Josh Horowitz. Here is a clip!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Popsugar at the "Ted" premiere was at the premeire of Ted and they talked to Mark and some of his co-stars in the movie Ted. They also give an update on the Entourage movie.

Washington Post talks to Mark Wahlberg

The Washington Post did an interview with Mark at the premiere of "Ted". Here is the video clip!

Mark Wahlberg to appear on Conan

Mark Wahlberg will be interviewed on the Conan Show on TBS on Thursday night!

Mark Wahlberg talks to Parade Magazine

Parade Magazine talked to Mark Wahlberg about Aqua Hydrate. Here is the interview:

Mark Wahlberg may have jumpstarted his career with an iconic underwear campaign for Calvin Klein, but the actor-producer isn't looking to have his likeness grace billboards again anytime soon.

For the past few years, the actor has been working to relaunch Aqua Hydrate, the water brand he owns (Jack Nicklaus, Ron Burkle, and Sean "Diddy" Combs all sit on the board of directors).

"I got into this by accident. I had no desire to be in the beverage business," he said over lunch in Bevery Hills on Tuesday.

"I was training for The Fighter and a friend brought this guy in with a case of water. He started telling me about reverse osmosis and all of this organic stuff and I said, 'Dude, I don't know what you're talking about. Leave the water and I'll try it.' I started drinking the water—I usually drink a gallon or a gallon and a half of water a day— and I immediately recovered quicker, started running eight instead of seven miles a day. So I said I love the product but wasn't in the beverage business so I couldn't help them. But then I started talking to people and decided I wanted to get involved somehow."

But don't expect him to grace billboards like Jennifer Aniston does for SmartWater. "Probably not," he said when asked by Parade. "I don't think anyone wants to see me on a billboard anymore. But we do want the top athletes and we'll have very interesting people endorsing the product."

The water has a supercharged pH9 level, which makes it the most alkaline drink you can have (sports drinks are about a 4.5, coffee is a 5, and standard bottled water is a 7 on the scale that runs from 1 to 14). This helps rehydrate your body faster and allows it to return to homeostasis with less energy expended. Not quite convinced by the celebrity backing? It's the official beverage for the Men's and Women's USA Water Polo Team and is used by over 40 professional athletes.

How does Wahlberg get his kids to drink water? Read on below!

How Diddy became involved.
"I was in Vegas at a fight and Diddy comes up to me and goes, 'Where's that water? Where's the water?' And I told him not to worry about it since it was for me not for him. He said he always wanted his own water so we started talking and then Ron Burkle came on. We feel like we have a special product and we did all these clinical tests against all the premium waters and energy drinks. There are a lot of big athletes who drink the water even though they get paychecks from other drink companies. There is no shortage of people who want to be the face of the water. We're talking the biggest and the best."

Water at home.
"I fly the water everywhere since when I drink other water now, I can taste the acid. And my kids won't drink any other type of water. We want to have the water in all the school systems and have them drinking Aqua Hydrate instead of sodas. My kids are allowed to drink orange juice or lemonade in the morning or lunch but after that, they only have water. They only have water in their lunches. My three-year old can't even pronounce it but he tries to ask for it. They love it. We used to buy Poland Spring or Sparkletts. You can surround them with other drinks and they won't touch them now."

Helping the boys overseas.
"We have a lot of momentum with the miltary. At one point we were in 53 military bases. I went over to Afghanistan personally to bring some water. The soldiers are having dental issues and they're drinking Gatorade. When I went over there, there was all this water sitting in the sun that weren't in BPA-free bottles."

Unconventional uses.
Wahlberg told a story of helping a director recover from a very raucous night in Las Vegas. When the director was in bad shape after a long night of drinking, Wahlberg had him drink the water. "The next day he was on the set at 7 am. He had written a song called Aqua Hydrate and was singing it with one of my co-stars. And one of our partners who likes to drink vodka, he owns a vodka company, drinks the water to recover as well. It's pretty good stuff. Someone also says if you have the blue bottle, you don't need the little blue pill."

Boston Globe: Mark Wahlberg trying again to finish high school

The Boston Globe has a new article about Mark going back to school to get his high school diploma.

Mark Wahlberg has succeeded in many roles: Academy Award-nominated actor, movie and television producer, rapper, and, of course, underwear model. But not the part of high school graduate.

Kerry Tondorf, headmaster of Snowden International High School in Copley Square, is helping Wahlberg change that.

After reading in a celebrity magazine that the 41-year-old Wahlberg, who dropped out in his freshman year, regrets never graduating, Tondorf sent him a letter three weeks ago telling him about an online credit recovery program offered at his former high school.

“He called me the next day, and he seemed very excited and serious about the opportunity,” Tondorf said.

Wahlberg will earn his diploma through the Accelerated Learning Academy at Snowden, which allows students to complete missing course work online at their own pace. Some students finish in a year or less, Tondorf said, while others can take longer.

Wahlberg has enrolled in his first class and has credentials to sign in online, Tondorf said. Students must log in at least once a week. They read course material and have to pass exams for each chapter, all online.

Students are one step closer to attaining their diploma after passing all the exams in the course, which will then appear on their transcript. After all state requirements are met, students will receive a diploma from Snowden, formally Copley Square High School, where Wahlberg would have graduated in 1988 had he stayed in school.

The program is part of an initiative that began in 2009 when Boston public schools Superintendent Carol R. Johnson opened the Re-engagement Center as a way of getting students reenrolled in high school.

According to Boston public schools, about 1,200 students have enrolled in a diploma-granting program. At Snowden, 50 students have participated in the Academy and 15 of them have received diplomas.

“I think the headmaster’s letter was a bold and wonderful thing,” said Michael Allen, Snowden’s assistant headmaster and the program director of Accelerated Learning Academy. “People might say that he [Wahlberg] does not need a diploma, but I disagree. Anybody who values their kids or any other child would want to set an example.”

In 2010, Wahlberg became an ambassador for the Taco Bell Foundation’s Graduate to Go program, which works to raise awareness on high school dropout rates and provides programs and resources to keep students in school.

In a written statement to the Globe, Wahlberg said working with teens through the Graduate to Go program and “seeing their determination to get a diploma despite tough circumstances” inspired him to make the commitment to get his diploma.

“This is my chance for a real diploma, a chance to be a role model for my kids and teens across the country to stick with it and graduate,” Wahlberg said.

Wahlberg told David Letterman on June 11 that telling his children he never finished high school would be a tough conversation, but he was changing that.

More than 20 years after Wahlberg dropped out, he will start class while on the set of “2 Guns” in New Orleans later this month. Wahlberg told Letterman that he hopes to “blast through” his studies in the next six to eight months.

“It’s one of those things where I said, ‘I am going to make it happen,’ ” Wahlberg said.

As a teenager, Wahlberg spent time in jail “long enough to never want to go back,” he told Letterman. In 1988, Wahlberg was incarcerated for 45 days for beating a man with a stick.

Allen said Wahlberg was fortunate to have been given the opportunity to change his ways, which is not something that many high school dropouts get.

“He is atypical. If Mark’s brother [Donnie] wasn’t as successful, his past could have been a lot more detrimental to him,” Allen said. “This is a message for those who have given up. There is hope.”

In a written statement, Bob Fulmer, Taco Bell Foundation for Teens executive director, said he commends Wahlberg for his decision to attain his diploma.

“In spite of his many successes, his desire to earn a high school diploma shows just how committed he is to building awareness around America’s high school dropout crisis and recognize the importance of education for today’s youth,” Fulmer said.

In addition to helping Wahlberg get his diploma, Tondorf said, the potential to inspire others to return to school is the biggest take-away.

“He cuts across all lines. Young people know him. Older people know him,” Tondorf said. “This might make people stop and say, ‘Gee, he is doing it, and he doesn’t have to. Why can’t I?’ ”

Mark Wahlberg talks to Collider

Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, Seth MacFarlane were interviewed by Collider about Ted!

Ted is a raunchy, outrageous and hilariously funny live-action/CG-animated comedy from the zany mind of Seth MacFarlane, the man behind the animated TV show Family Guy. Bringing his boundary-pushing brand of humor to the big screen for the first time as writer, director, producer and voice star of the bear itself, the story is centered around John Bennett (Mark Wahlberg), a grown man whose childhood wish brought his cherished teddy bear to life. Almost 30 years later, Ted is still by John’s side, to the increasing annoyance of his girlfriend, Lori (Mila Kunis), who issues an ultimatum for John to leave his boyhood friend behind and enter adulthood. For more on the film, here’s four clips.

At the film’s press day, co-stars Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis, along with Seth MacFarlane, talked about how this film came about, starring opposite a teddy bear, how smooth the special effects turned out to be, figuring out where to draw the line with offensive humor, how Sam Jones (Flash Gordon) ended up in the film, and deciding on the specific look for Ted. Check out what they had to say after the jump.

Question: Seth, what took so long for you to make a movie?

SETH MacFARLANE: Family Guy had that little cancellation thing happen to it, and I wanted to make sure that it was fully on its feet, after coming back, before I stepped away to do a film because it did mean stepping away from the show completely for at least a year, and that was something that I hadn’t done yet. This was an idea that had actually been floating around in my head for a while. I had originally conceived it as an animated series idea and, for a number of reasons, shelved it. And then, when it came time to do my first movie, it seemed like a story that would make a much better film than a series.

Mark and Mila, when you initially signed on, were you worried about co-starring opposite a bear? Did you wonder whether it would work, in terms of looking at the eye-line and the stuff you’d have to do with him?

MARK WAHLBERG: I was a little nervous at first, but once we started getting into it, I felt comfortable pretty quickly. It was more of a problem working with Mila. She’s a tough cookie.

MILA KUNIS: You know what? It actually wasn’t so bad. I didn’t have very much physical interaction with the bear. Mine was very circumstantial, whether the bear was to the right of me or to the left of me or to the front of me. I think Mark had it the hardest. For me, it wasn’t so frightening. You have a stick and two eyes. As far as the animation or the look of the bear, I was never too concerned with that. There’s not a question of why MacFarlane can do that, and do it incredibly well.

WAHLBERG: They had done a test, too. We got to see a little bit of the bear, before we started shooting. There was a concern of whether it would go into the scene seamlessly with the chemistry, even though Seth and I were having a great time acting opposite each other, and whether it would translate when you’re putting the bear into the actual scene.

Seth, did the special effects turn out to be more of a pain in the ass than you expected?

MacFARLANE: No, the special effects were surprisingly a smooth part of the process. We tried a fairly new technique of doing it all live on set, to get an improvisational feel, but it went surprisingly smooth. We had two great studios – Tippett and Iloura – that just knocked it out of the park for us.

Did you re-write a lot of Ted’s dialogue in post?

MacFARLANE: Yeah, we had a little bit of liberty to do new Ted lines in post, in case something didn’t work. That was a luxury that we took advantage of. We would screen the movie and, if something didn’t work, we’d try a different line at the next screening. That’s one of the good things about an animated character.

The movie has a lot for college audiences. What do you want them to take away from this film?

WAHLBERG: Well, go back and smoke another joint and see it again. It’s always better the second time around. You were so wasted the first time, you probably missed some jokes.

MacFARLANE: That answer works for me, too.

KUNIS: Me, too.

Mark, your comic timing is just so impeccable. Who were comic idols, growing up?

WAHLBERG: I don’t know. I just grew up watching a lot of old television with my father, like F Troop and Barney Miller. [Det. Stan “Wojo”] Wojciehowicz would probably be the one to best describe one of my comic idols. Does anybody know who Wojciehowicz was? I just grew up watching TV. It’s all in the material. I approach a comedy the same way I do a drama. I try to make it as real as possible. Thankfully, Seth was into that. I was worried that maybe he’d want me to do a couple prat falls, and that’s not really my thing.

Seth, you’re used to a TV-14 constraint on Family Guy, but for this, you knew it would be rated R. Did you find yourself pulling back while having freedom to do more?

MacFARLANE: Yeah. You’re not dealing with the restrictions imposed by the FCC. They’re self-imposed. In a way, that does make it harder. You actually have to think about it, as opposed to just taking for granted that you’re not going to be able to do this. With a movie like this, most of it was language. This movie’s been labeled hard R, but I don’t think of it as a hard R movie. It’s a fairly moderately R movie. There’s no graphic sex and there’s no heavy drug use. It’s R for language. So, if that doesn’t bother you, you’re fine. The first cut of this movie had a lot more uses of the word “fuck,” and we did cut that down somewhat because we found that, even though it’s an R-rated comedy and you can do whatever you want, it was starting to eat into the sweetness of the story a little bit. So, you do have to impose restraints on yourself, and it is more difficult than just being told by someone that you can’t do something.

You do a brilliant job of showing the clash between youth and adulthood in both this and the TV show. Why is that so prevalent for you?

MacFARLANE: Adults acting like children and children acting like adults is generally a pretty reliable comic device. On Family Guy, you have Stewie, who is a baby that acts like an adult and Peter who’s a man that acts like a child. This movie is a bit more textured and has a lot more shades to it, but in terms of the dynamic, we’re essentially playing the teddy bear as the physical manifestation – in a symbolic or literal way – of John’s inability to grow up and get on with his life.

How difficult was it to prepare for the hotel room fight with Ted?

WAHLBERG: Well, I didn’t have to do anything to prepare other than just trust Seth. I just felt so ridiculous flopping around in that room, by myself. But, everybody loves that scene.

MacFARLANE: The whole joke of it was that we wanted to play it as realistically as possible. We wanted it to feel like a fist fight in The Bourne Identity, except one of the characters happens to be a teddy bear. I think we pulled that off. Mark just sold it, 150%. Even without the bear in there, when you look at that raw footage with the sound effects and him getting the shit kicked out of him by this invisible adversary, it actually still kind of works. Hopefully, we made it painfully realistic.

Mark and Mila, what do you think is unique or special about Seth MacFarlane’s humor, both in his animated series and this movie?

KUNIS: I’ve done so many interviews about Seth that it’s kind of redundant for me to say this, but over the years, from Family Guy to Ted, I think that Seth’s humor is incredibly socially relevant. It’s not humor for the sake of being humorous. And I think that there’s a certain linear story to his humor. It’s very consistent and it’s smart. It doesn’t make you feel dumb. I’ve always said that he’s brilliant at what he does because he sets people up in low-brow situations with high-brow humor, and that’s one of the hardest things to do. Also, all of his humor is rooted in truth and honesty. From Family Guy’s flashbacks to the songs that some of the characters break into to the fact that there’s a movie coming out about a talking teddy bear that nobody seems to be questioning, it’s all rooted in truth. It’s very grounded humor. Nowadays, it’s very rare to get that.

WAHLBERG: That was good. I was just going to say that he’s the funniest motherfucker I’ve ever met.

KUNIS: I could have said that, too. Fuck! I’ve only known him for 13 years.

Seth, when it comes to some of the more offensive humor, how do you figure out where to draw the line?

MacFARLANE: In a movie like this, we adhere to the same rule that we generally do with the animated show, which is, if you’re going to make fun of one group, you’ve gotta make fun of them all. The cliche is “equal opportunity offender.” In this movie, pretty much every religion, race and creed is poked fun at. I think that, if you’re going to make fun of one group of people, you’ve gotta go all across the board. As far as something going across the line, the systems that are in place, as far as the screenings and audience testing, make it pretty clear what’s over the line and what’s not. If something gets a gasp, eight times in a row, at eight screenings, you know it’s probably got to go. There’s been a couple of those jokes. Even on Family Guy, we do screenings of each episode before it goes to full animation and our own staff is not shy about going, “No, no, no, that’s way over the line!” If you’re getting enough laughs on the way there, it’s probably okay. If even your friends are telling you that it’s offensive, then they’re probably right.

How many gasps did you get when you were testing Ted?

MacFARLANE: There was only one that I can think of, that I won’t repeat here because it didn’t work. For the most part, by the time it got to the test screenings, we had excised most of that material. There was one that we pulled out because the audiences just thought it was too over the line.

Seth, why do you love Sam Jones so much, and why do you hate Brandon Routh?

MacFARLANE: I don’t hate Brandon Routh. The jokes at the end of the movie are probably the closest things to what people may expect from me because of shows like Family Guy. It’s a satirical jab. I’m sure he’s a very, very nice guy. The Flash Gordon idea was just because it’s a cult movie that a lot of people know. It’s ridiculous and absurd, and it seemed like a funny piece of pop culture for John and Ted to bond over. It was something that worked as their movie that was the symbol of their friendship. We just looked up Sam Jones and asked if he wanted to come do it, and he was very enthusiastic.

In this film, you can really understand why Lori wants Ted to move out and John to grow up. Was that intentional, so that you didn’t make her into the bitchy girlfriend?

MacFARLANE: Nine times out of 10, in a movie like this, you do see the image of the hands on the hips and the, “Stop this nasty behavior!,” tone. That’s one of the reasons we wanted Mila for this. We tried to make sure it wasn’t that on the page, but even where we missed spots, Mila was there to very shrewdly, with laser-light precision, make sure that did not happen. The character has a very valid point. She had the hardest job in the movie, but in a lot of ways, it’s the character with the most realistic goal. She has this guy who’s very childish and she likes those things about him. She likes the fact that he’s not perfect. She likes the challenge of maybe having to fix this guy, a little bit. But, at the same time, in the higher part of her brain, she wants the stability and she wants the responsible boyfriend who’s going to step up. I hope that’s very relatable. I think her beef with him is legit, in the movie.

KUNIS: Yeah, everything that Seth said is correct. It was a hard thing to do because you want to play the fine line of not having to be too cool ‘cause then that’s not realistic, but you don’t want to be the nagging girl in the film because then you’re stuck being the nagging girl in the film. Seth was very responsive to anytime that there was an argument that I had, regarding the character’s dialogue, when the response wasn’t justified. In all honesty, we had many discussions on set over it, and it was always because I was like, “This is coming across too bitchy. It’s not how a woman would react.” More times than not, he was like, “Okay, how do you propose we fix the problem?” It was awesome because it allowed me to help make the character be what I wanted her to be, but with Seth MacFarlane’s voice. It was very collaborative, and he was very open-minded to the idea. It’s a hard character to write, especially for a man. I wouldn’t even know where to begin, and I’m a female. You’re damned if you do and you’re damned if you don’t. You’re stuck in this weird limbo.

Mila, how do you stay grounded and what makes you happy in life?

KUNIS: I don’t know. I guess I’m very honest and I speak my mind, at all times. I think that, if anything, helps me stay grounded because I will say what I think, but I don’t expect the yes, in return. If you ask a question, there’s always two answers, a yes and a no. You’re not always right. I will fight to prove that I’m right, but I will accept being wrong. I have an amazing family. I have a truly incredible group of friends that I can count on one hand. I’m so blessed and lucky to be in a position to work with people that I respect and look up to and admire, and actually want to show up to work with. I think a lot of that speaks for itself. I am able to do the job that I love and surround myself with the people that I like to go to work with and work for, for 17 hours a day, and people whose opinion I trust and whose outlook I respect. I don’t really know how to answer that question because I’m sure many people would disagree and tell you that I’m a horrible human being. But, I do believe that it all depends on who you surround yourself with. What you put out is what you get back in return. I work hard. I work my ass off, and I’ve worked that way for 20 years. But, me working hard, I don’t have to show you how hard I work. As long as I know how hard I work, that’s all that matters. I think people get so caught up in trying to prove to everybody else how hard they work that they lose all sense of what they do and why they do it. As long as I do my homework and I know I did, and I show up and do my job, at the end of the day, that’s all that matters. And then, I can have a life.

Mila, is comedy your favorite genre to act in, or are you interested in other genres as well?

KUNIS: Somebody was like, “After Black Swan, we didn’t really expect you to follow this up with Ted?,” and I literally went, “Why, because it’s funny? Does being funny somehow take away from the quality?” It doesn’t. I’ve had this argument with MacFarlane many times, but I don’t think I’m funny. I really don’t.

MacFARLANE: I disagree.

KUNIS: Thanks, but I don’t. That doesn’t mean that I don’t love comedy, but I would never be able to go on a stage and do a roast. I think I would panic! That being said, I love comedy when it’s written well. When someone like Seth MacFarlane gives me dialogue to say that I think is brilliant, I will say the shit out of it and I will make it work to my best ability. But, I will not go and do something that I don’t believe in, whether that be comedy, horror, sci-fi, action or whatever genre. It doesn’t matter. It’s about quality. If I love Ted and I think that’s a good movie, I don’t care if it’s funny or sad, as long as it’s good. It’s just entertainment. So, I will go in whatever direction I’m drawn to. After Ted, I went and did Oz: The Great and Powerful. I am dying to know what genre people are going to put that movie in. And then, after that one, I went and did Hell & Back, which is a stop-motion animation, R-rated movie. And then, I went and did Blood Ties, which is a cop drama. None of this makes sense. If you look at my movies, they all look like a crazy person chose them, who’s erratic and has no lineage whatsoever, but I choose the work that I believe in.

MacFARLANE: You bring in A-list actors to an animated show and it separates the men from the boys. Instantly, you see who is a pretty face and who actually has the chops. We’ve had plenty of A-list people who have come in and we’ve seen the Emperor’s clothes. For all these years, we’ve thrown a lot of very, very subtle comedy at Mila, for the role of Meg, and you’re not seeing her lovely face, you’re hearing her voice. All you’re getting is her ability, and it’s tremendous. That, to me, is the best example of all. You are hearing her voice and you are hearing her skill of her comedic timing, and she’s getting laughs and has been for 10 years. That’s worth noting.

This film is very influenced by Boston. How did that come about?

WAHLBERG: The movie was already written to take place in Boston. I don’t know if Seth even trusted that I could do a Boston accent. Nobody was really doing the accents. Everything that has to do with the movie in Boston is Seth. It was already on the page.

MacFARLANE: The comparison I always make is to Ghostbusters, as weird as that is. To me, one of the reasons that movie worked was that you had this ridiculous fantastical element to the story, but it was set against, not just a realistic city, but a city we all know. There were ghosts running around and these exterminators who had to eliminate them, but New York is the very familiar and very real New York, with all of its warts, that we know. It grounded everything and earned you the rest of the stuff. That was kind of what I wanted this movie to feel like. You have a talking bear, so the rest of the movie should be as real and grounded as possible to earn that. One of the things that you can accomplish that with is by setting it in an actual city with an actual regional flavor.

Mark, what made you decide to do a supplement line with GNC?

WAHLBERG: I’ve always wanted to be in the health and wellness business. I try to encourage people to live a healthy lifestyle. If you want to smoke pot and drink beers, do it on the weekend. During the week, eat healthy and exercise.

Seth, can you talk about the choices in the music and how much it adds to the humor of the story?

MacFARLANE: With the music, they’re song choices that fit with the movie. I’m a film score junkie. I’m the world’s biggest John Williams fan. I wanted this movie to have a classic film score because I felt like what it would do was play against the edginess of the comedy and earn you some of the harder jokes. You have to have that to balance things out. With Family Guy, for years, that’s what we’ve done. We’ve got these hard-edged jokes, but we have a pretty serious musical style. I think it works in tandem with each other.

Did Ted always look like Ted, or was there a process for deciding how Ted would look?

MacFARLANE: I wanted to keep the bear’s design very simple. There’s a style of 2D animation that The Simpsons employs and that Family Guy employs. When Homer Simpson is being addressed and he’s just sitting there listening, it’s just a blank, wide-eyed stare. There’s something 100 times funnier about that, then if there were a series of Disney-esque, subtle reactions. Each audience member can imprint what they think is going on inside his head, based on their own bullshit, and I wanted to do the same thing with Ted. Oftentimes, CG characters are so humanlike that they come off kind of creepy looking. Have you ever seen Jack Frost, that movie with Michael Keaton, with that terrifying snowman that just gave you nightmares? That would be an example of CG gone wrong, and they all acknowledged it, after that movie. I wanted to keep Ted simple. His eyes are very blank. There’s a little expressiveness with the eyebrows, but it’s a pretty simple design and that was deliberate. I wanted to leave enough to the imagination that what that expression is or what that thought process is would be maybe a little different for each audience member.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Mark Wahlberg interviewed by NY Daily News

Here is a video interview with Mark Wahlberg from NY Daily News:

Extra TV interviews Mark Wahlberg

Mark talks about going back to school in this short interview with Extra TV while at the premiere of Ted.

Watch Mark Wahlberg on Craig Ferguson

Here Mark Wahlberg's interview on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson:

Video courtesy of TefaDevilAgain

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Watch Video of Mark Wahlberg on Jimmy Kimmel

Here are some video clips of Mark and Mila Kunis on the Jimmy Kimmel "Game Night" show from last Monday night.

Listen to Mark Wahlberg's interview with Howard Stern

Mark Wahlberg recently did an interview with Howard Stern. Listen to the interview below!

Videos courtesy of M076n7

Mark Wahlberg's interview with Flicks and Bits

Mark Wahlberg was interviewed about "Ted" by Flicks and Bits. Check out the interview below:

‘Family Guy’ creator Seth MacFarlane brings his boundary-pushing brand of humor to the big screen for the first time as writer, director and voice star of ’Ted.’ In the live action/CG-animated comedy, he tells the story of John Bennett (Mark Wahlberg), a grown man who must deal with the cherished teddy bear who came to life as the result of a childhood wish…. and has refused to leave his side ever since. Starring Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, Joel McHale, Patrick Warburton, Giovanni Ribisi and Seth MacFarlane playing Ted through motion-capture, the R-rated comedy arrives in cinemas June 29th in the US and August 1st in the UK.

‘Ted’ is a film that people may not automatically expect from you? Especially seeing as you were last seen on the big screen in ‘The Fighter’ and ‘Contraband.’

Mark Wahlberg: Yeah. I still have some action with ‘Ted.’ I have a great fight sequence in the movie. A chase sequence, climbing over some stuff. But I do play a very different character, my character has never been in an altercation until he has to punch this twelve year old boy in the face (laughs). So it was very different. My character’s very child-like, I wouldn’t say naive, but he’s a sweet guy. He’s not the edgy sort of character that people have seen me play recently.

My character, John, he gets Ted as a Christmas gift. It’s one of those talking bears that when you squeeze its hand it says a couple different sentences. John doesn’t have many friends in the neighbourhood that he’s growing up in, so Ted becomes his best friend and he makes a wish that the bear will come to life and, you know, his Christmas wish is granted (laughs). It’s a very funny scene when the bear starts talking in the kitchen with his parents.

You did two things in ‘Ted’ that you don’t really care to do….

Mark Wahlberg: (Laughs) Singing and dancing. I hate it. I don’t mind it in the shower or singing in the car – I was belting out an Adele song this morning. But, I dunno, it just feels silly. With the film, people love it so what do I know? My judgement is shot (laughs). I think with ‘Ted,’ people will not be disappointed, it’s like Seth MacFarlane on steroids. It really is. I saw ‘Family Guy’ and I thought, “Wow, he’s getting away with some of that stuff in a cartoon.” But now a feature film, Rated R, he pushes the envelope – there’s nobody he doesn’t offend either, everyone is fair game. I was down with signing and dancing on something like that.

With the nature of working with someone like Seth MacFarlane and his brand humour, I can imagine there needs to be a lot of trust? Especially since you haven’t worked with him before.

Mark Wahlberg: Yeah. Well, I read the script first of all….actually, when I first heard the concept of the movie I said, “You know what? This is not for me.” But my agent convinced me to read the script and I loved it. Then I sat with Seth for an hour and we clicked right away. You can just tell when somebody gets it, they know what they want and they know how to execute. Because I’ve been in a room with a lot of people who are just kind of trying to convince themselves that they know what they’re going to do, how they’re going to execute it. You could tell pretty quickly with Seth that he knew what he was doing.

What was it like working against CGI and with Seth MacFarlane?

Mark Wahlberg: The CGI, it took a little while getting used to. But once I started getting into the swing of things, I started being very comfortable with the idea of acting opposite whatever they had. Whether it was the stuffed bear or the little stick with the eyes. And then of course having Seth somewhere in the room doing the voice was also very helpful. Working with Seth, you never know what to expect. But we hit it off really well when we first met and hung out. It was a very very pleasant experience working with Seth. He’s just such a nice, warm guy. He’s as funny as any human being I’ve met in my life, but he’s just really cool and easy to work with. There was never any stress or difficulty.

Mark Wahlberg's interview with Artisan News Service

Artisan News Service interviewed Mark Wahlberg about the movie "Ted". Check out the video clip below!

Mark Wahlberg on Late Night Talk Shows on Friday

Mark Wahlberg will be on Jimmy Kimmel Live (ABC) and The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (CBS) this Friday night!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Mark Wahlberg interviewed by Access Hollywood

Access Hollywood talked to Mark Wahlberg about being involved with a “Fifty Shades of Grey” movie, a movie with Justin Bieber, getting his high school diploma, and working with an animated bear in "Ted".

Monday, June 18, 2012

Watch Mark Wahlberg on the Today Show

Here is a clip of Mark Wahlberg on the Today Show where he talks about the upcoming movie "Ted", going back to high school and more.

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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Watch Mark Wahlberg on David Letterman

Mark Wahlberg did an interview with David Letterman last night. He talks about: having a picnic with his wife and kids on his birthday, watching the New Kids on the Block become successful while he in jail, going back to high school to graduation, what kind of jobs he had when he was younger, Wahlburgers and pitching a show about the restaurant to A&E, and "Ted".

Click here to watch!(Mark's part starts about 15 minutes in.)

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Help Mark raise money to help teens stay in school

Mark sent this out on Twitter today:

Thanks for all the birthday wishes! Help me celebrate today by raising $1 million for an important cause. For every "like" this graduation cap receives, Taco Bell will donate $5 (up to $1 million) to help teens stay in school.

MSNBC Interview with Mark Wahlberg

Mark Wahlberg discusses "Pain and Gain" in this new interview clip from MSNBC. He says they are now finished filming that movie. He also talks about his new house.

Seth MacFarlane talks about Mark Wahlberg

In an article from AZ Central, Seth MacFarlane talks about Mark's acting ability.

Mark Wahlberg is an ''extraordinarily versatile'' actor, according to 'Ted' director Seth MacFarlane. 
The action star has taken on a comedy role in the new movie where he plays a grown man reunited with a life-size version of his treasured childhood teddy bear, Ted, who quickly starts to come between him and his girlfriend (Mila Kunis) and Seth was impressed with Mark's range.
He told Empire magazine: ''There's not much he can't do. He's extraordinarily versatile. It's always surprising because he's such a humble guy who's not showy about it. 
''He'll just very quietly come onto the set and do anything you throw at him and do it brilliantly. Mark's character has to pull the audience into this reality in a way that makes it seem like not that big a deal. He has to be able to talk to an empty space with the comfort that would show he was talking to another live actor and Mark just knocked that out of the park.'' 
Seth admits the movie ''asks a lot'' of Mark but says he was more than capable. 
He added: ''There's broad physical comedy in the movie, there's subtle dialogue comedy. It asks a lot of an actor. And Mark had displayed so many different skills in so many different movies that he seemed like he would be the perfect balance. He could give us everything we needed, every style.''

Photos of Mark Wahlberg at the MTV Movie Awards

Check out the links below for photos of Mark Wahlberg at the 2012 MTV Movie Awards.

Getty Images

AP Images

Mark Wahlberg interview with MTV News

Mark Wahlberg was interviewed backstage at the taping of Spike TV's "Guys Choice Awards" on Saturday night by MTV News. He talks about Russell Brand hosting the MTV Movie Awards and how he hopes Russell doesn't make any jokes about him.

Happy birthday to Mark Wahlberg

Happy birthday to Mark Wahlberg who turns 41 today!

Here is a cute birthday wish from "Ted":

Monday, June 4, 2012

Watch clip of Mark Wahlberg on the MTV Movie Awards

Here is a video clip of Mark Wahlberg on the MTV Movie Awards from last night.

Get More: MTV Shows

Here is a short interview with Mark about a heckler while he was presenting an award with Mila Kunis.