Stop-motion animation was once thought to be a dying genre, but Laika studios new film Missing Link is breathing new life into the film style. Missing Link tells the story of Sir Lionel Frost, “who sets off on an adventure to the Pacific Northwest to prove the existence of a legendary creature—Mr. Link. Frost, who’s also looking to gain acceptance by his small-minded explorer peers, is accompanied on his journey by Adelina Fortnight, a free-spirited, independent adventurer who just so happens to possess the only known map to their secret destination of trying to find Link.”

Zach Galifianakis stars as Mr. Link, the Bigfoot Sasquatch in search of his relatives and Zoe Saldana voices Adelina Fortnight, the free-spirited traveler who, along with Sir Lionel Frost, helps Mr. Link find his people. On this episode of Extra Butter, I spoke with the Zach and Zoe about some of the underlying themes of the film, including acceptance, fitting in, and being told to “stick with your own kind.”

Is it best to stick with your own, or can you grow from experiencing other people and different things? Zach told us:

I think [experiencing other people and things] is the best way to go about it. We’re supposed to be living here with each other. We’re all from different walks of life. One should never feel like one is better than the other. In North Carolina, there was a cabin that was built eons ago, and the reason it’s still erecting is because the Germans and the Brits worked on it together. When different ideas come and work together, it’s mathematical. It’s only better.

Zoe added:

I think you have to [stick with your own] for a certain amount of time, in order for you to learn about your heritage, your history, who you were — even those before you, who they were. But as soon as that happens, to journey outside of your comfort zones is crucial in order for you to grow knowledge, experience. But also to gain compassion about everything that is different outside of yourself, because you have to nurture curiosity.  

Some may be surprised to find out that someone as beautiful as Ms. Saldana use to have a problem fitting in.

I feel like school was the most difficult time in my life. Having to go back to the same place that causes so much stress in you because of the projections. Everybody is just projecting. And kids tend to be really mean through their innocence. The lack of knowledge and the lack of experience sometimes compels you to be a really heartless person. 

Fortunately, the actress never let the childhood drama stop her from becoming a box office phenom. See what else Zach and Zoe had to say in the video above. Catch Missing Link when it hits theaters this Friday, April 12th.

Missing Link: Zach Galifianakis & Zoe Saldana Talk Self-Acceptance, Working With Others & More  was originally published on globalgrind.com

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