ByVal Complex, writer at
Professional Writer I guess...
Val Complex

Did you know that cat cafes exist? What exactly is a cat cafe anyway? Well, it's a place where you can buy a coffee, a danish, and enjoy the company of cute kittens and cats that that roam free and are up for adoption. What's fascinating about this place is how well the cats live. Their living area is like a kitteh Disneyland equipped with specialized cat towers and a cat runway.

What is so special about this particular journey to Oakland, California's cat cafe is getting to interview Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key about their gangsta cat film Keanu, while cute cats and kittens are free to frolic around the interview room. It's not the typical environment for an interview, but as a cat lover, this is heaven.

[Image via Valerie Complex]
[Image via Valerie Complex]

"We look at Keanu as a spiritual cousin to the Simon Pegg's Hot Fuzz," said Key.

Keanu pays homage to the spoof/parody genre. The audience should catch the influence of films like Airplane and Naked Gun in Keanu. When the film industry is jam-packed with superhero films, Key and Peele aimed to make something that keeps you engaged and to make the audience laugh.

"When we were approached about doing this film, I think they knew they had a couple of guys they could trust. The project came at a good time because the studio lets us do exactly what we wanted to get things done," says Key.

During their run on Comedy Central, Key and Peele were in control of the voice and tone of the show. That gave the studio confidence that the comedy duo knows exactly how to navigate themselves around a movie set.

Naturally, the biggest question surrounding a movie like this is: why a cat? Why not a dog, or an alpaca? What was it about the tiny fur ball that just worked for this movie?

"I can't put my finger on exactly why, but the kitten, the name 'Keanu', and the du-rag, just works," explained Peele.

"I lobbied so hard for a chinchilla," added Key.

Certainly, films with cats at the heart of the story come few and far between in Hollywood—the only two we can recall are That Darn Cat and Stephen King's Cat's Eye. Could it be that cats are, dare we say it, too difficult to work with? It sucks that Cats tend to get a bad wrap.

"We actually worked with seven kittens, all different personalities. We met the cats in the training process and the trainers would bring them around during pre-production," stated Peele before Key added, grin in tow, "And they were just as adorable as they could be."

[Image via Valerie Complex]
[Image via Valerie Complex]

This isn't a job for just one kitten. As Jordan Peele pointed out, the on-set animal trainer brought in several kittens with each one possessing a certain set of skills.

"Some of the cats were trained to run and crawl. Other cats were trained to just sit and relax," noted Key. "The trainers wanted the kittens to be around as many people as possible, so when they got on set the kittens wouldn't freak out from sensory overload."

Keegan Michael-Key and Jordan Peele march to the beat of their own drum. They were given the freedom to take the subject matter, and filter it through their own creative process. Sometimes, they get inspired by outside sources, but they thrive best when they can improvise.

The famed comedy duo got their start on sketch comedy TV show Mad TV and worked their way up to their own comedy show on the Comedy Central network. The wildly popular Key and Peele comedy show ended on a high note after five seasons in 2015. They took some time off, but now, they are back and ready to take Hollywood by storm.

Keanu releases in theaters nationwide TODAY! Are you going to check it out? Let us know in the comments below!

Images: Valerie Complex


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