Kevin James in the bankrupt Paul Blart.
Kevin James, stand-up comic and star of the sitcom The King Of Queens as well as big-screen comedies Hitch and I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry, answers a few questions about his latest movie.
Why Paul Blart: Mall Cop?
I wanted to play a guy in a uniform. It made me laugh, the idea of me with authority. Me without authority is even funnier. They're not real police - nobody respects them.
How did you prepare to play a mall cop?
It's not easy being a mall cop. You gotta know where Cinnabon is, how to find the food court and the washrooms. If there's a little liquid spilled on the floor, you have to set up pylons and direct traffic. That could take up a whole day. And they wear polyester pants that don't breathe.
In the upcoming Observe And Report, Seth Rogen plays a bipolar mall cop. Any concern about there being two mall cop movies, the way there've been two asteroid movies or two volcano movies at the same time?
Seth Rogen totally stole everything from me. Hopefully, they're two very different movies.
Who's more kick-ass: Rogen's mall cop or Paul Blart?
He's an aggressive mall cop and goes after people. My guy sits back on his heels, then saves the day in the end, Die Hard-style, which I think is funny - me turning into an action guy with this body.
Were there a lot of jokes that didn't work?
Plenty. Jokes that went on too long. Sometimes when it goes on too long and you can stick with it, it becomes so ridiculous that it starts to become funny again. Like Family Guy - I love that they do that. It's literally five minutes of something and they just commit to it. We tried that, and sometimes it never comes back to funny and you just have to cut it.
I'm doing a bit of stand-up here and there, doing another movie called Zookeeper, where I play a zookeeper.
You're doing a lot of press for Paul Blart. What's the most unusual question you've been asked?
Whether the moustache was what made me want to do the character. You know, oddly enough, it's a big piece of this puzzle. It takes a lot to grow a moustache. It's a commitment; it makes you part of an elite group.
Any thoughts on a sequel?
Like what? Blart Happens? Blart Harder? Let's just see how the first movie does.