It’s been nine years since we’ve visited the Phineas and Ferb universe cinematically and right in time to lift our spirits through this Pandemic, is a new standalone sequel film coming to Disney+. This time around, Phineas and Ferb‘s older sister Candace (Ashley Tisdale) gets her own movie. We see her find her own utopia, far away from her pesky little brothers, after being abducted by aliens. Her brothers venture across the galaxy to rescue her.
We were thrilled to have a Zoom chat with the Cast and Creators of the Film, including:
Jeff “Swampy” Marsh (Major Monogram/Co-Writer)
Dan Povenmire (Doofenschmirtz/Co-Writer)
Ashley Tisdale (Candace)
Vincent Martella (Phineas)
Alyson Stoner (Isabella)
Dee Baker (Perry)
Maulik Pancholy (Baljeet)
Martella recalls his time in the Franchise in the lead role of Phineas, first joining the Animated Series pilot. “I was 13 when I did the pilot and I’m now 27. I never got taller and my voice never got lower!”, he jokes. One thing he revealed to us was the inspiration in crafting Phineas‘ voice which came as a shock to his castmates. “My parents played a lot of Bob Dylan music while I was warming up my voice. I was singing a lot of Folk music as Phineas as a teenager!”.
Tisdale expresses her excitement to her about her Candace getting to be front and center this time around. “It’s crazy to be a star of your own movie. I obviously love it and she’s excited to have her name out there”, she admits. “The experience of being abducted by aliens is scary, but then she feels very special and I think it’s a win for Candace. At this point, she’s so frustrated she never gets them busted, so she needs a little separation from them, but then she realized she might take them for granted. She has learning experiences in space.
Stoner who plays Isabella, tells us that coincidentally where she’s staying right now is actually close to a rumoured UFO Farm. “Apparently it’s where the UFOs land to get repaired. I passed by and this was part of the property I’m staying on …I’ve got photos!”. On reprising her character, she says “Isabella has always been so aspirational. She’s capable of finding, being the solution or executing solution. I loved revisiting the complexity and paradox of Isabella.”. “She’s on a nonsensical mission, but tripped-up in emotional swells when managing her crush on Phineas. To be able to be masculine and feminine, with leadership and nurturing skills is really fun.”. On her time in the Franchise, she feels, “This entire series has been indication that anything is possible, removing limitations. Explore and play and see what comes out of it. Even if you say something not scripted and it’s true, we often wind-up keeping it. Many fans think that’s their favourite aspect of the character”.
Marsh and Povenmire tell us about the idea to take this Film and set it in space. Marsh says, “Our writing started with weeks of throwing around story ideas, so there were other ideas we explored before we hit on this. My greatest hero is Neil Armstrong, so any time you get to go to space is really cool.”. Povenmire adds, “If we’re going to do a big Feature – the last one was in another dimension and this is in another planet which allows us to make it up and look however we want. We wanted it to be a big, sweeping epic kind of story. We did over 230 episodes of lampooning and Sci-Fi and had to find new things to do.”.
The Pandemic inspired their creativity, writing the song heard in the End Credits over Facetime even! They also talk to some of the new characters we see in PHINEAS AND FERB THE MOVIE: CANDACE AGAINST THE UNIVERSE. Povenmire says, “Ali Wong plays an Alien Queen who’s name is Super Super Big Doctor. The name came from somebody who used that phrase when talking about a doctor. That then became a phrase and we named a character after it! She knocked it out of the park. We have Diedrich Bader as one of the aliens Borthos, with a voice that made us laugh. His role got bigger the more we heard him talk in character. Thomas Middledich is in one of our favourite Improv things, Middleditch and Schwartz. It’s so exciting to have people come and do great stuff for us!”.
One some of the things that make this Film so magical, Baker who plays Perry describes it in two words, “Melodious Optimism. It contains melody and smart humour. These two things in a package are irresistible.”.
Pancholy, who plays Baljeet says, “You fall in love with every single one of characters. You can play cartoons over and over. This world is so fun and full of friendship, love, family and sticking-up for each other. Dan can write snarky jokes which are full of love!”.
PHINEAS AND FERB THE MOVIE: CANDACE AGAINST THE UNIVERSE has something for the kids big and small and never underestimates the intelligence of a child. It arrives on Disney+Friday, August 28, 2020.