Chris Pine wasn’t thrilled about picking up the microphone for his new Disney movie musical Wish.
“Every time you’re like, ‘They f—ing hired me?! Oh my God, no,’” Pine, 43, told Entertainment Weekly in a Monday, November 20, interview regarding his singing ability. “It’s not my forte, it’s not my background.”
Although he was quite anxious, Pine loved the style of the songs written by Julia Michaels and Benjamin Rice for the movie, which celebrates 100 years of storytelling at Disney.
“There’s a dominant melody line and [Michaels] deliberately plays against it,” he explained to the outlet. “I think that’s how you really hear the story of the lyric. It is [Stephen] Sondheim-esque because his work is very similarly atonal. It’s always plot-driven and emotionally driven as opposed to just something in a pretty song. I loved the challenge of it, but I was definitely a nervous singer, for sure.”
This isn’t the first time Pine has shown off his vocals. In 2014, he performed in the movie musical Into the Woods — which caused him just as much stress.
“Stephen Sondheim came into the recording session with the full orchestra. As I was coming out, he said, ‘What was that note in the second stanza?’ I said, ‘Oh! B.’ He’s like, ‘It’s an A-flat,’” the Star Trek actor shared. “The point being is that he heard me screw up. So, that’s a long way of saying, yes, I was terrified.”
Disney’s Wish, which hits theaters on November 22, stars Ariana DeBose as Asha, a 17-year-old girl who makes a wish to the stars after believing there is darkness in the magical kingdom of Rosas, a land led by the sorcerer Magnifico (Pine).
The film — which was announced during the D23 Expo — is meant to honor Disney Animation Studios 100-year anniversary.
“‘When You Wish Upon A Star’ was one of the first songs I knew,” Wish’s screenwriter Jennifer Lee told Entertainment Weekly in October. “I don’t even know when I first heard it. It just was always there. You can say a wish is passive because you wish and hope this happens, but really it’s a declaration of what’s driving your heart, and the pursuit of that is important. How can we deconstruct that in a more sophisticated way, but also have a lot of celebration of the 100th?”
Chris Buck, the codirector of Wish alongside Fawn Veerasunthorn, revealed that during early test screenings, it was challenging for “people to understand the power of a wish” or how “emotional” it could be.
“That was pivotal. We knew we had to keep working to make it feel powerful,” Buck, 65, explained to the outlet.