'For me, it's always exciting to come to work with Mr. DeNiro,' Ben Stiller says of his co-star.
By Kara Warner, with reporting by Eric Ditzian
It's hard to believe that it's been six years since audiences were treated to a Fockers film. "Meet the Fockers," the sequel to "Meet the Parents," was released in 2004. Even more difficult to believe is that it's been a full decade since the original opened in 2000. With the arrival of the third installment in the franchise, "Little Fockers," opening Wednesday (December 22), we wanted to know what the castmembers missed most about each other during their long six years away from the Focker and Byrnes families.
"Cuddling," Dustin Hoffman, who plays Ben Stiller's father Bernie Focker, joked. "We hadn't cuddled for six years."
"Cuddling, that was a good one," Owen Wilson agreed. "There's something about this guy, I can't keep my eyes off him ... my hands off him. You just want to hug him."
"Owen and I work very similarly together," Hoffman explained of their affection for one another. "And we yearn for the time when we can have an entire film together."
"That would be nice," Wilson said. But when asked about the long hiatus between films, Hoffman seemed to enjoy the break.
"I kind of like the blessed relief of not having to do another 'Fockers' for six years," he said with a chuckle.
"Yeah, I think it is nice to let it percolate," Wilson added.
The actresses who play onscreen mother and daughter noted that the passage of time has been met with many milestones, both in the film and in real life.
"Now we have children," Blythe Danner said. Gesturing to co-star Teri Polo, Danner continued, "She didn't have children in real life when we started 10 years ago. I didn't have grandchildren 10 years ago in real life. So we're mature women now. We've all matured, in positive and negative ways."
"Speak for yourself!" Polo joked about the "mature women" comment. "There's a dance, a familiarity, a dance, a rhythm, a song that you just fall back into," she said of coming back to work with her "Focker" castmates. "When you walk onto the set for the first time after five years and see Robert DeNiro, it's just awesome. Believe it or not, he's a warm man," Polo added. "He's a man of few words but very warm." Speaking of DeNiro, Stiller insisted his legendary co-star was happy for time away from him.
"He didn't miss me," Stiller said. "For me, it's always exciting to come to work with Mr. DeNiro. I feel like after 10 years I finally feel OK calling you 'Bob.' I finally feel like I'm not forcing that," he said. "It's always great to have a chance to work together, the whole cast, it's always fun to see everybody."
Check out everything we've got on "Little Fockers."
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