‘Christopher Walken was reluctant’
Choreographer Michael Rooney of the Fatboy Slim video Weapon Of Choice… makes puppets dance in The Muppets.Updated: Nov 13, 2011 15:45 IST
Watching Christopher Walken dance around a hotel is a sight most remember from the video of the Fatboy Slim track Weapon Of Choice…’. While the actor’s persona may have taken a backseat for those three-minutes, the video went on to become iconic. Recalling the 2001 event, ace choreographer Michael Rooney says, “We got on a call with Christopher and told him about our concept. He was a little reluctant at first because he didn’t understand that it was just going to be him. He thought it was going to be him and other dancers.” But eventually “he totally loved the idea.”
“He initially told us ‘I’m not a MTV recording artiste’. Then we told him that it was for Fatboy Slim’s Weapon Of Choice, and he didn't have to sing, but just dance,” says Rooney, who is currently looking forward to what he calls “the biggest thing he has worked on” — choreographing the film, The Muppets. The Walt Disney film is directed by James Bobin and releases in India on November 25.
“I worked with 120 dancers, it's the most I’ve ever hired for one musical film. It was also the most celebrities I’ve ever worked with. I can't mention the cameos, that’s a big surprise,” says the artiste, who has made Kylie Minogue move in ‘Can’t get you out of my head…’ and ‘Slow…’, and has featured on the show, Dancing With The Stars.
However, making stuffed colourful character-puppets move to the rhythm in The Muppets was an experience in itself. “It was a little challenging at first. The controllers have sticks and wires attached to their bodies and limbs, so I ended up choreographing The Muppets through them. And that was a whole other dancing in itself, which the audience will never see,” he says. The huge fan of Indian dancing even insists that he wanted some desi moves incorporated in the film: “I absolutely love it. I wish we could have done a Bollywood type in The Muppets, but I didn't get to.”