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Emmy nominee Alan Cumming's Smurfy adventure

Joel D. Amos is a Los Angeles-based writer, and the Senior Entertainment Editor here at SheKnows. He has interviewed numerous celebrities, including Angelina Jolie, Julia Roberts, Katherine Heigl, Rachel McAdams, Jamie Foxx, Anne Hathaw...

Cumming comes alive in The Smurfs

Alan Cumming is always animated, but not like the Scottish actor is in The Smurfs. Cumming portrays Gutsy Smurf -- a Highland-inspired, kilt-wearing warrior.

Alan Cumming has come so far from his humble beginnings growing up in the tiny Scottish hamlet of Angus. Cumming sits down with SheKnows for a one-on-one to take us inside his incredible ability to find himself part of some of pop culture's most resonant entities. Whether it is James Bond, Cabaret, X-Men or the heavily 2011 Emmy nominated (including one nod for himself) The Good Wife, Alan Cumming is always an integral part of the ensemble.

The Smurfs arrives in theaters July 29

And now, Cumming can add The Smurfs to that list. When The Smurfs first took over the world through literary form courtesy of creator Peyo, it was Europe in the 1950s and kids couldn't get enough. The actor who is Gutsy Smurf in the live action-animated hybrid 3D film version has once again become part of the creative team producing current classics of his childhood inspirations. To say he grew up adoring The Smurfs is the understatement of the year.

Alan Cumming chats

SheKnows: Where does it fit for you in your career to be part of something that has rocked Europe since the 1950s?

Alan Cumming: I really am inspired as an artist is to be part of this big cultural event. It's fun, you know. Coming from Scotland, it was a part of my past. It's great to be able to take the fans, the grandchildren -- to be seeing a film that you're a part of that's as huge as The Smurfs. It's lovely. The James Bond film I was in was also awesome for me. [Stops cold and shakes his head.] I'm in a James Bond film. I grew up with them. Even the X-Men movie and things like that. You have been an outsider and now you're inside it. It's great [laughs].

Alan CummingSheKnows: You said that you grew up in a smaller town.

Alan Cumming: A tiny town in Scotland [laughs].

SheKnows: What was it that drew you to this business? Was it something you saw on television?

Alan Cumming: No, it's more actually my brother is a bit older than me and we lived in a very remote place. A lot of my play was making up things, making up stories for myself and my family and friends. Then, I didn't know what an actor was or that it was a job or anything. Then there was a little theatre in the local city and an education troupe came to my primary school and did a show in the dining hall. I was fascinated by them. It was about Highland history and stuff that you'd been taught in history -- suddenly it came to life. I was mesmerized. I remember seeing them afterwards putting their trunks in the van going on to the next school. I remember thinking, "Wow, this is exciting. I want to do that." It's kind of like joining the circus [laughs]. That was really when I thought I want to do that. What was funny was when I was 20 I was still in drama school but I was working in Scotland -- in Glasgow in Macbeth -- and the woman who played Lady Macbeth had been in that troupe that came to my school... And she was like don't you dare tell anyone [laughs].

Katy Perry is Smurfette and Alan Cumming is Gutsy Smurf

SheKnows: I know that the stage work you do is very important to you. How do think working on a stage enhances the work that you do on TV and in film?

Alan Cumming: For me, the stage is the thing. I've thought about this quite a lot. What I love is the immediate connection you get with an audience. The fact that a raised eyebrow is having an effect right there -- you can hear it -- or when you get a laugh or when you touch people and you can feel it, it's in the air. That is something you don't get in film. You're not going to get it back immediately, of course, but you hope it will have that effect farther down the line.

Alan Cumming charms The Good Wife

SheKnows: Your work on The Good Wife has just been absolutely astounding. How has that experience been for you? In a way has it been a nice surprise?

Alan Cumming: It has been a surprise. It's been surprising in many ways. I went for a couple of episodes and that was nice and all of a sudden, now here I am in season three, a regular part of the whole thing. That's been a surprise. It's been a surprise to find how much I enjoy serious television. I love the fact that you don't know what's going to happen next week. I love the routine of it and I do love the people I'm working with and the writers are great. And I've also been very surprised by people's reaction to it. It's been very positive. But also I think I realize that people are, "Oh, he's doing that. That's something quite different for him." I'm aware of the audience's enjoyment of the fact that it's me in something they haven't seen me do before -- which is very nice. They seem to be paying attention to the past. And also finally, it's a surprise for me to realize I don't play normal people. I don't play people very often. I don't play real people. I'm playing a man in a suit possibly for the first time ever, you know, someone who's a normal person. Of course he's not normal, but I realize that I don't need to play real people very often. That's quite interesting to realize.

The Good Wife

SheKnows: How is it filming in New York?

Alan Cumming: I'm at home, yes [laughs]. Those sorts of things, circumstances, and creature comforts become more of a consideration as you get older. I don't want to be travelling around the world all the time as glamorous and fun as it can be. It's nice to know that from now till next April I'll be essentially living at home. I'll be based in New York and that is so nice.

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