Another music star is singing the tune of “Hey, hey, hey.”
Aaron Carter has joined former B2K leader Omarion and Marques Houston in the cast of the upcoming live-action “Fat Albert” movie.
Carter, who’ll have a small role, was one of five late additions to the cast announced Wednesday. Nick Zano, former host of MTV’s “Movie House,” and Derek Watkins, the P. Diddy and Outkast associate otherwise known as Farnsworth Bentley, are two others.
Several of the cast members, including “Saturday Night Live” member Kenan Thompson, who is taking on the title character, debuted their costumes for the media on Monday at Paramount Studios in Hollywood.
Also on hand was the creator of the character, Bill Cosby himself. The veteran comedian, who based the “Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids” cartoon on a stand-up routine about his childhood in Philadelphia, said the time is right for the character to make the move to the big screen. “Fat Albert is a charming fellow who you will fall in love with,” Cosby promised.
Director Joel Zwick (“My Big Fat Greek Wedding”) was the one who first thought of Thompson to play Albert, but Cosby, who co-wrote the script and is executive producing, was quickly convinced.
“[Cosby] was like, ’Don’t worry about imitating me and what I was doing on the show. Just do yourself and your take on it,’ ” Thompson said. “I’m imitating him some, the whole ’Hey, hey, hey,’ you know, that voice, but there’s times Albert’s dealing with emotions he never had to deal with on the TV show, so there’s a different Albert, a more human Albert.”
Thompson considers Albert a career role. “He’s not the traditional-type hero,” the actor said. “He’s such a good, whole-hearted person. He’s big ’cause his heart is big. He’s a problem solver, and everyone loves a person like that.”
One of Albert’s gang, Dumb Donald, will be portrayed by Houston, while Omarion will play Reggie. “We’re the villains,” Omarion said, standing next to J. Mack Slaughter, who is playing Arthur.
Other cast members include Shedrack Anderson III as Ruby, Jermaine Williams as Mushmouth, Keith Robinson as Bill, Alphonso McAuley as Bucky, Aaron Frazier as Weird Harold and Kyla Pratt as Doris.
“My character’s shy, not confident at all, and Albert and the gang help me with that,” Pratt said. “Albert’s so lovable, and you just want to hug him and kiss him.”
Raven-Symoné, who played Cosby’s step-granddaughter on “The Cosby Show,” was not at Monday’s event but recently revealed she has a part in the movie. “I do a voiceover, but I’m not allowed to talk about it,” she said.
“Fat Albert” is shooting now and is due in theaters on Christmas day.