In “How to Train Your Dragon 2,” the young Viking Hiccup is reunited with an important figure from his past — Valka, a character voiced by Oscar-winner Cate Blanchett.
“I had her in mind when I wrote the character,” said writer-director Dean DeBlois. “I needed to channel a woman who would be both rich in that she’s really commanding and has a really authoritative presence but also has a lot of stinging regret, so there’s a vulnerability to her as well.”
During the Q&A, DeBlois then recounted how he approached Blanchett at the Academy Awards in 2011.
“I walked up to her at the cocktail reception before the ceremony started and I said, ‘Hey, I wrote a part for you in ‘How to Train Your Dragon 2.’ And she said, ‘Really?’”
DeBlois said he was aided by some inside pressure from Blanchett’s camp that spurred her to sign on for the role.
“Her boys were huge fans of the first one, so that helped.”