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Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Tintin

March 15, 2011 | 11:51 am


British comedians Nick Frost and Simon Pegg first hit big with American audiences in the 2004 zombie film "Sean of the Dead." They've reuinted for "Paul," which the cowrote and costar in; "Paul" opens this coming weekend. But what us bookish types care about is their appearance in "The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn," based on Hergé's Tintin series, directed by Steven Spielberg. It uses performance-capture technology similar to that used on "Avatar."

Rebecca Keegan spoke with them at the South by Southwest film festival in Austin, Texas, for our scintinllating sibling blog, Hero Complex.

Spielberg first enlisted Pegg and Frost when Pegg was meeting with him about a writing job. Instead of the writing gig, Spielberg asked the pair to play Thompson and Thomson -- two bumbling detectives from the classic comic series by Belgian artist Hergé. On the set, they were among the first to see Spielberg -- who had never even shot in digital on a film -- as he learned to use new technology....

Pegg and Frost wore performance capture suits on the set, where a bunch of gray-painted chicken wire would stand in for a setting like a marketplace.

“It was like rehearsing a play, like when you’re a kid and you’re pretending that thing over there could be the Millennium Falcon,” Frost said.


"Tintin" is scheduled for release on Dec. 28. It also stars Daniel Craig and Carey Elwes. It is based on the two Tintin comics "Le secret de la licorne" and "Le trésor de Rackham Le Rouge," by Belgian comic artist Hergé.

-- Carolyn Kellogg

Photo: Top: Nick Frost, left, and Simon Pegg. Credit: Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times

Bottom: Thompson (played by Pegg) and Thomson (played by Frost) escort Silk (played by Toby Jones) back to his apartment. Credit: Paramount Pictures