A parrot with a Latin accent is not something you often see in movies about dinosaurs, but that is exactly what John Leguizamo plays in the upcoming film “Walking with Dinosaurs.”
The character, Alexornis, is based on the recently-discovered fossils of a bird-like dinosaur that inhabited what is today Mexico and Central America.
Both a reptile and a bird, Alex is very much like a parrot, said John Leguizamo, the veteran voice actor who plays him.
Leguizamo, who also voiced Sid the sloth in the “Ice Age” movies, told Fox News Latino that he thought of the two characters - in terms of their voices - as completely different.
“Sid is like this,” the Colombian-born actor said with a lisp before quickly changing to his Alex voice. "I wanted to squeeze a little Latin into Alex,” Leguizamo said, pointing out the geographic origin of the bird-reptile. “I am old-school for voices where you want to forget the actor," he added.
“Walking With Dinosaurs,” which opens in theaters on Friday, uses intricate computer-generated imagery for its animal characters. It focuses on one dinosaur’s life as he tries to survive in the late Cretaceous period, when dinosaurs ruled Earth.
“This one is based on facts, real history,” Leguizamo said. “It looks like the real thing." The filmmakers have gone to great pains to give a realistic, scientific underpinning to the character's movements and actions.
"It’s real behavior," Leguizamo said. "So when you are watching the movie, you get the facts you’re learning while being entertained.”
Along with “Walking With Dinosaurs,” Leguizamo is slated to appear next year with Ice Cube in the police comedy, “Ride Along,” and in “Chef,” opposite Sofia Vergara and Scarlett Johansson.
Leguizamo also will return to HBO with a stand-up comedy show, for the first time in nearly a decade and a half, with “Ghetto Klown.”
And while the performer’s résumé includes a wide range of styles and genres, he noted one thing is still missing: "A period piece."
“But not a dinosaur period piece,” he added after a pause with a laugh. "Something about how [Latinos] influenced the American Revolution, maybe."
Follow Lucia I. Suarez on Twitter @luciasuarezsang