Taylor Swift is stoked about getting to portray an original and "heavenly" Dr. Seuss character in "The Lorax," especially since reading the children's author's books marked her first exposure to poetry.
The animated film is set for release on Friday, March 2, on what would have been the 108th birthday of Seuss. The writer and poet, whose real name was Theodor Seuss Geisel, died at age 87 in 1991. He is also known for stories such as "The Cat in the Hat," which was also made into a movie.
"Getting to be in a movie based on a Dr. Seuss book is an unbelievable experience," Swift, a six-time Grammy-winning singer-songwriter, said in an interview provided by the film's studio, Universal Pictures. "It's such an amazing opportunity and the reason I said 'Yes' right away was just because as a kid, that was my first exposure to poetry."
"That was the first time I'd ever realized that if you put words in a certain combination, and you put the right rhymes at the end of the right phrases you can make words absolutely bounce off of a page," she said. "I love the payoff that you get when you complete the rhyme. What's so brilliant about what Dr. Seuss did was he would figure out a way to teach you something without you knowing you were being taught."
"The Lorax" is based on the author's 1971 book. It is set in a whimsical world and provides a pro-environmental message. A businessman named the Once-ler, who is portrayed by Ed Helms, has caused the destruction of Truffula trees due to revolutionary technology he has invented.
Heartthrob Zac Efron plays a boy named Ted and Swift plays his love interest, Audrey. Ted aims to help her fulfill her dream of seeing a real tree and discovers that their city, Thneed-Ville, has been closed off.
"When I first saw the character, Audrey, I just thought she was adorable," Swift said. "She's just heavenly. She's a daydreamer, she's so beautiful, she's so original. It's just a joy to get to play that character."
Ted meets the Once-ler, who tells him a story about the land's guardian, The Lorax, played by Danny DeVito. Ted then sets off to remind the world about the importance of nature but runs into opposition from the city's mayor, portrayed by Rob Riggle.
"I think that people are going to really love this movie because it's beautiful," Swift said. "You are seeing these big shots of this beautiful, wonderful, natural world that we live in with these Truffula trees and the colors and it's just gorgeous animation ... you're laughing and you're thinking, 'That's adorable' and then your heart drops when you see certain images of what the world has become."
"You walk out of the theatre really thinking about your life, which I think is so important for a younger generation to have so much fun during the movie but then leave with a better idea of thinking about the future and thinking about your actions and kinda thinking about your life," she added.