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Interviews with Christina Ricci and Hank Azaria at 'Smurfs 2' special screening

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On Sunday, Examiner.com was on the scene at a special screening of Sony Pictures Animation’s "Smurfs 2" in New York at Lighthouse International Theater presented by Citi and The Wall Street Journal. The Smurfs have been around since the late 1950's and have brought entertainment to millions (if not billions) of people for the last two generations. With its cute storyline and fun cast of characters, it’s no wonder that The Smurfs have remained relevant to this day. "The Smurfs 2," stars Hank Azaria, Neil Patrick Harris and Katy Perry. The film comes out July 31 and is sure to entertain.

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In a terrible twist of fate, we find ourselves in the wonderful city of love, Paris, where Gargamel is living the high life as a celebrity magician. While his antics to rule over the world have continued to fuel his everlasting search for essence - the blue of all the smurfs. Being Smurfette’s birthday, Papa Smurf and all the others plan a surprise birthday party, only to be stopped by Gargamel’s henchmen, Vexy and Hackus, played by Christina Ricci and J.B. Smooth, respectively. With the help of Patrick (Harris) and Grace (Jayma Mays), the smurfs enter the real world in order to save Smurfette and stop Gargamel from world domination.

What we love about kids movies nowadays is that they also appeal to adults with subtle jokes. The theater on Sunday was filled with kids and adults of all ages, and everyone was entertained. We recommend this sweet and action packed comedy.

Check out highlights from our red carpet interviews!

Christina Ricci

Were you a fan of "The Smurfs" growing up?

Yes, we watched "The Smurfs" every single Saturday afternoon and ate our cereal.

What was your favorite cartoon to watch growing up?

I actually loved "He-Man." "He-Man" was my favorite.

How did you get involved with the film?

They just called me and offered it and I was incredibly flattered and excited.

Who is your favorite smurf?

I actually always liked Azrael. That’s my favorite character from "The Smurfs." I’m obsessed with cats and evil villains.

Hank Azaria

What’s it like bringing your son to see you in the film?

He loves Gargamel. I don’t think he understands that...daddy is Gargamel, but it’s pretend. It’s pretend!

Are there any kids products that you or he can’t live without?

No, not really, but there are certain books we can’t live without. Like "Goodnight Moon" was certainly a big one, but he’s sort of grown out of that book. But right now, Dr. Seuss is huge. "The Cat in the Hat" is a biggie, he likes "The Sneetches" a lot.

When you’re on a road trip, how do you entertain your son?

Well, we stay away from videogames. We play a lot of games like “What color am I thinking of?” or something like that. “What number or letter am I thinking of?” We sing.

Papa Smurf, Smurfette and Clumsy Smurf made an appearance on the carpet and posed with celebs and their families. There was also a photo booth with the Smurf's Village as the backdrop for guests to have fun and take home their own photo keepsakes. Following the blue carpet screening, guests made their way over to Dylan's Candybar for bite sized hors d'oeuvres and candy. Guests left with swag bags full of Smurf video games, "The Smurfs" dvd, "The Smurfs 2" soundtrack, stickers and keychains. Celebrities that we spotted included Fabolous, June Ambrose, Lilla Crawford, Yaya DaCosta, Jemima Kirke, Debi Mazar, Fatima Ptacek, Tashiana Washington and Eric West.

In LA, the "Smurfs 2" movie premiere was held at Westwood Village Theater - the blue carpet premiere was a star-studded event with people of all ages enjoying McDonald's classic Happy Meals. Katy Perry, George Lopez, Jayma Mays, Vivica A. Fox, Britney Spears, Neil Patrick Harris, Tamra Barney, Gretchen Rossi, Larry Birkhead and daughter Danielynn and many more attended the LA premiere on Sunday.

Additional reporting by Catherina Gioino

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