‘POWER RANGERS’ cast morph into colorful characters
by Gwen Reyes
This weekend marks the release of POWER RANGERS, the newest superhero reboot promising to capture the hearts of kiddos around the world.
The action-packed film reunites the Rangers, a team of misfit teenagers with super abilities. This time around the cast is filled with new faces like RJ Cyler (ME, EARL, AND THE DYING GIRL) and Naomi Scott (TERRA NOVA), with established actors Bryan Cranston (BREAKING BAD) and Elizabeth Banks (PITCH PERFECT), each bringing their own take on the iconic characters.
During a brief stop in Dallas to promote the film’s release, the Rangers shared what makes their characters similar – or different – from the actors playing the roles.
Dacre Montgomery (Jason, a.k.a. the Red Ranger): “I think I’m very similar to Jason, because you meet him and [you think] he’s just another jock, douchebag kind of guy, but he’s more multidimensional. He doesn’t really want to do his sporting career — in school I wasn’t a sports person, at all. He’s struggling with his relationship with his dad. That isn’t something I’ve experienced, but it’s interesting to touch into. I think he’s endearing and he wants to know the people in the other social groups at his school. In high school, I didn’t really have any friends; any social group I would have taken. In the film he’ kind of searching for that relationship, which is similar to me.”
Ludi Lin (Zack, the Black Ranger): “Zack and I share certain background. I was raised by my single mom and so was Zack and he felt like an outsider from time to time. Because I moved around so much, I felt like an outsider, too. I backpacked a lot and I traveled a lot. I went on adventures the same as Zack. On the other side, Zack is kind of insecure. He’s missing a lot of things and I had that side to me, too. With our characters, and all the characters, this movie is about the different sides of these characters — these individuals. Once you can accept yourself for who you are, you’re doing good for yourself and for others.”
Naomi Scott (Kimberly, the Pink Ranger): “I play Kimberly, she’s the Pink Ranger. I don’t think — there’s some things that I would-”
Becky G. (Trini, the Yellow Ranger): “The maturity is really on point. I think that’s true to life for you.”
Naomi Scott: “Yeah, Kimberly has a maturity which, you know, maybe I do, maybe I don’t. I think she is self-assured and I’m pretty self-assured. But in terms of her being, like, the popular girl at the beginning of the movie I think that’s a façade. And when that all goes down hill she kind of thinks ‘oh, stuff it. I’m done with these fake people anyway.’ She would rather hang out with real people and I think that’s kind of what she’s searching for. She’s always been more about her appearance but I’m the opposite. I’m more of a Tom boy. We joke around that I’m a little bit more like Trini (Becky G.) in that way. And Becks is more, like, glam.”
Becky G.: “I was the last one to get cast in the movie. And when I met Dean [Israelite] for the first time one thing I learned about Trini is that she is a loner. I think, coming from a musical background and having established what I think is a successful career and having toured the world, I was so sure and confident in that world. I wondered what Dean saw and then we had a really deep conversation and then I realized that I am a lot like my character. I am kind of a loner, it is common to feel alone in this industry. I’ve been in stadiums surrounded by thousands of people and can still feel alone. And, I think that’s thing with Trini. She’s in this high school, surrounded by the same people every single day, then she meets someone like Kimberly who she’s been in the same class with for years and [believes she’s a transfer student]. People think they know you and that was, I think, a subconscious connection to my own life. ‘Oh, it’s Becky G, the pop star singer,’ but I’m an actress and I’m very much into this character who is the complete opposite of who people really think I am.”
RJ Cyler (Billy, the Blue Ranger): “With Billy, I think the thing that makes us similar is wholeheartedness. When people are around I pretty much want everyone to be happy and smile, that’s why I’m so energetic. And sometimes people can be like ‘alright, RJ, you’re a little too much for this morning.’ No, you’re just too little for this morning, let me help you! That part of Billy tags with me. He’s this dude that just doesn’t see the danger in trying new things. I don’t see the danger in trying new things. He’s more strategic, but if it blows up it blows up. That’s what I think makes Zack and Billy similar, and also similar to me. Like, ‘if I died doing it, at least I died smiling.’ We seek that adventure. Billy seeks it more on an analytical level, but that’s what kind of makes us the same.”
POWER RANGERS releases nationwide on Friday, Mar. 24, with special showings on Thursday evening. Check out our alternate video interview with the cast below: