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‘Zoolander 2’ Interview: Cyrus Arnold on meeting Ben Stiller & improvising with Will Ferrell


Courtesy of Paramount and Ben Stiller.

Get ready for “Zoolander 2″’s really, really, ridiculously talented rising star, Cyrus Arnold. The California native landed the role of the one and only Derek Zoolander’s son in the sequel to the cult classic, playing a character who is quite the opposite from his fashion-loving, not-so-smart father. Find out more below about his experience working with comedy greats like Ben Stiller and Will Ferrell as well as perfecting the glorious look, Blue Steel.

Q: How did you discover your passion for movies?

I just watched movies and said to myself, wow I’d really like to do that when I grow up. I want to be in that business. I want to be a part of that. Luckily for me, that happened.

Q: What was your first impression of Ben Stiller? Did you feel intimidated at all?

I did not really feel intimidated. He’s really warm to people; he’s nice and friendly and he’s really open to people. My first impression of him was really good.

Courtesy of Paramount

Q: What was it like working with Will Ferrell?

It was definitely incredible. The only time I broke character during the whole shooting was with Will Ferrell. That gives you an idea of how funny he was.

Q: What advice did you learn from working with comedy’s greatest?

Will Ferrell was so funny—you can’t do what is done. He’s so good at what he does. He improvises a lot in the movie. I tried to improvise once and everyone was like, don’t do that. I was like, aw. Will Ferrel was so good and everyone was laughing and I thought hey, I could do that! And they told me don’t do that, just stop.

Q: In the movie, Derek Junior has a rocky relationship with his dad. Where did you draw inspiration to bring that to life?

I really generalized the character. He is sad that he can’t connect with Derek Zoolander. I have a great relationship with my dad so it wasn’t the easiest thing to get this character—I had to pretend.

Q: Can you give our readers tips on perfecting Blue Steel?

It took about a day to perfect the look, just me and Ben working alone. On set it took about three hours to do that one walk on camera. We tried so many times. I can tell you what Ben Stiller told me in general: you have to move your eyebrows like you’re the sexiest guy in the world. Have fire in your eyes—that’s what my mom told me. I don’t know how he does the mouth thing.

Q: What is your dream role?

Definitely, Zoolander 2. For now, I’m going to keep doing what I do. Comedy’s my thing. It’d be really cool if I could do “SNL.”

Q: Who are your favorite YouTubers?

I watch a lot of Ryan Higa. I like watching people play videogames too like Markiplier, PewDiePie and jacksepticeye.

Catch Zoolander 2 in theaters now.

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