The voice of Nemo Alexander Gould, whose face will be familiar to fans of TV show Weeds, talks about his experience making Finding Nemo when he was seven and what it’s like to revisit the film now.
How did you originally get the role of Nemo? Was it a tough selection process?
It was a bit. I auditioned for it when I was seven years old. I’d been acting since I was two, and I’d done multiple auditions at that point and for me it was just another basic, easy audition. I went in, auditioned for the part, that was that, then a year later I got a phone call for a call back. I’d forgotten about it, but I went back in and read for them again. Then four months after that they asked me to come in again and read for a role in the film. I didn’t know what role I was going to be in, so me and my mom asked them and they said ‘The main role – Nemo’. So I was like ‘Oh, wow’.
Not really strange, it’s been a part of my life, so it’s not out of the ordinary for me. My friends are used to at this point, and kind of get it.
Your voice has changed a lot since you recorded the role, and now that young unbroken voice is preserved forever in a famous film. Does it feel strange when you hear it?
Yeah, a little bit. It’s cool to have a record of what I sounded like when I was younger, but looking back on it now it sounds very different. I don’t really recognise it as myself any more.
Do you ever watch the film back, now you’re older?
Yeah, I’ve watched it a few times. It’s still such a great movie, and one that appeals to audiences of all ages. It’s a really incredible thing.
Pixar Animation Studios has become a real gold-standard for animated films. Did you have a good experience being there when you were working on the film?
Yeah, their main studio where they film everything is in San Francisco, California, and it’s just an incredible place. Full of creativity, and all the people who work there are just incredible and fantastic, so you know why they make incredible movies. It’s not just that they’re really good, they’re in a place that facilitates such creativity and good movie making, and they have done a really great job.
You started acting from a very young age and you’ve done both voice work and live-action acting. Which medium do you prefer?
I would say they are so different, it’s hard to compare. The voice work is really fun and interesting, the live action is more challenging and there is more depth to what you are acting and doing. They are both really interesting and really different.
Finding Nemo has of course just been rereleased in 3D, and 3D as a format has not been without controversy. What are you opinions on 3D and this current trend of studios bringing back old films from the past and retrofitting them into 3D?
I think it really depends on the film and depends on how it is done. I think Finding Nemo is a film that can really benefit from 3D. It has so much depth to it, 3D is a medium that can only enhance it if it’s done well and correctly. I don’t have a personal huge problem with 3D, but I think some films would be fine if they were left alone without it.
You had some great voice co-stars in the film with Willem Defoe and Ellen DeGeneres. Have you stayed in contact with any of them over the years?
I haven’t, unfortunately. When I was doing the film there was such a huge age-gap between me and my fellow actors we couldn’t really have a relationship and couldn’t keep in contact with them too much. But just to have been in a film with them was a really neat thing.
You are still very young, but you’ve got a large CV of work. Out of all the work you’ve done what would you say you are most proud of?
Finding Nemo, of course, was a huge accomplishment and it’s just such a huge thing to have been a part of. I think that’s probably one of things I have been most proud of, for sure.
Finding Nemo 3D, directed by Andrew Stanton, is released in cinemas on 29 March by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Certificate U.