Shawn Mendes Talks Stage Fright and Embracing Vulnerability (Exclusive)
Shawn Mendes is hitting the big screen in the animated film “Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile”!
“Extra’s” Melvin Robert caught up with Shawn, who plays singing crocodile Lyle in the movie, and his co-star Javier Bardem, who plays the croc’s owner, Hector P. Valenti.
Shawn opened the interview with compliments for Melvin.
“You're a super handsome man. You have this Dwayne Johnson thing going on,” Mendes told him.
Melvin replied, “Thank you. That's high marks coming from you.”
Shawn, who recently canceled his tour due to anxiety, revealed how he related to his character.
“He plays this physical giant. He's super shy and he's super kind of introverted and the stage fright. These are all things that I can constantly feel,” Mendes said. “And I just love how vulnerable he is and I feel like I am kinda just trying to embody that more at this place in my life.”
He added, “I just love how honest of a creature that he is even in his eyes — he is just so honest in what he is doing.”
Melvin commented, “I feel like Lyle could be everybody's friend. I think we all need a friend like Lyle.”
Shawn agreed. “I love the juxtaposition between him being this giant, terrifying creature and being so sensitive and so scared... That’s a beautiful way to express what it feels like.”
Sharing what he hopes people take away from the movie, Mendes, said, “A lot of it is about finding your own voice. I personally see what it means to trust those who care about you and see those who are there to support you and kind of set boundaries against those who are not, and I think Lyle does that in a beautiful way. You see that transition of him figuring out, 'Oh, this person really does care about me,' and I think that’s a beautiful message to take away.”
Shawn also just released the single "Heartbeat" from the movie. Melvin asked, I know we get to hear you sing in this project, too, which is amazing. Did that maybe kinda take some of the stress off you making your acting debut, that you got to sing, and also that Lyle was animated?"
Mendes said, "Yeah, I think it’s odd calling it my acting debut because I was like, 'Oh, I was singing and it was an animated character, so it was kinda… but there was a lot more acting involved in the way that the songs had to be sung than I was expecting. But definitely I think it was a perfect opportunity. Reasons for doing the film were A, I loved the story. B, I wanted there to be an amazing message for children. But also C, because I’m so curious about movies and getting involved in them, and this felt like a perfect kind of first step into that world."
Meanwhile, Oscar winner Bardem was not an easy “yes” when it came to signing on to “Lyle, Lyle Crocodile.”