Oh, that Matt Damon. Is there anyone he can't charm? Including wild animals?
What he seemed to discover during the filming of his latest film, "We Bought a Zoo," is no: Even when the snakes came out as part of the shoot, as he told TODAY's Matt Lauer on Tuesday, he managed to figure out how to work with them. "I was not excited to be working with the snakes," he admitted. "I've never been a snake guy, and (co-star Scarlett Johansson) was totally cool with it. The second she sensed some trepidation she was like wrapping them around her and putting them on the kids and the kids were laughing at me so I had to kind of man up."
Damon was on set to talk about his film, but he's happy to get into the swing of all things TODAY, first appearing in a pre-interview tease wearing a remnant from an earlier segment about ugly holiday sweaters. But by the time the interview started, he was back to his usual clothes, though Lauer did comment on his (largely) absent head of hair. "I just finished a movie and I had a completely shaved head, so I'm growing it back," said Damon, who says "I loved" the cut. "It's been about six or seven months that I've had it like this; it's really liberating, very easy."
He's been quoted as saying that with "Zoo," he wanted to make sure the film wasn't going to be a "Disney version," which Lauer reminded him of. "Yeah, the oversaccharine version ... or kind of cheesy," said Damon. "Which is to say more of like the TV movie version of the thing would have been a movie that I would not have wanted to really spend my time doing because it's not the kind of movie I want to see."
So despite the lions and tigers and bears and snakes and cuddly children, you have it from Matt Damon: "We Bought a Zoo" is not too sweet.
"We Bought a Zoo" opens on Dec. 23.