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Interview: Octavia Spencer And Will Ferrell Share Who They’d Want To Run Hollywood’s HR Department

The ‘Spirited’ stars also share the best gift someone can give them this holiday season.

Get excited for a new holiday musical that will lift your spirits and show off Octavia Spencer’s vocal chops in the AppleTV+ film Spirited.

The film stars Spencer and Will Ferrell, who plays the Ghost of Christmas Past and selects a dark soul each year to reform picking a scrooge in Clint Briggs (Ryan Reynolds). Things begin to go awry as Briggs forces the Ghost of Christmas Past to reexamine his past, present, and future.  Spencer plays the role of Kimberly, Briggs’ assistant, who rethinks her path after getting fed up with the life she chose once she joined forces with her boss.

In this fun conversation, Spencer and Ferrell chat with BET.com about the film, who they would select as the Head of Hollywood’s HR department, and a “nice phrase” they use to tell someone off.

BET.com: The HR department in film and real life has ups and downs. If Hollywood had an HR department, who would you place in charge, and what’s one rule you would want to be put in place?

Spencer: I would have to put myself in charge of the HR department [laughs], and my golden rule would be to treat others how you want to be treated. If we all did that, we would all be happier.

Ferrell: This is a tough one, but I would choose either Octavia because she would run a tight ship or RuPaul.

BET.com: The musical has a lot of great spots, with you both showing your vocal abilities. What song on your playlist would you break out and sing to in public and choose one actor and artist to perform w/ you?

Spencer: The song I always choose for karaoke is “The Midnight Train To Georgia” by Glady Knight because she has a low range like myself. I would dream of having Mariah Carey on one side and Beyoncé on the other. I would also say Katy Perry, Jazmine Sullivan, and Ariana Grande.

Ferrell: I would have to say Jennifer Hudson. She was kicked off American Idol, and look at her now.

BET.com: The world can be so cruel at times. What’s one thing or activity that keeps you “spirited?”

Ferrell: I want to say something cool, but I would say my family [laughs].

BET.com: In the film, the term “Good Afternoon” is not used in the friendliest way and is meant as an “F you” What’s a “nice” phrase you use when you want to flip someone off?

Spencer: Apparently, I call people sweetie when I get heated.

RELATED: Octavia Spencer and Will Ferrell Get 'Spirited'

Ferrell: Oh, I’ve heard it. I’ve been sweetie’d a handful of times [laughs]. I look at people and say, “check please,” whether I’m in a restaurant or not [laughs].

BET.com: The holidays are near. What’s the best gift someone can give you this year?

Spencer: Kindness.

Ferrell: I’m going to say socks because my kids are old enough to wear my pairs, and I keep losing them. It would be nice if the socks were grey [laughs].

Welp, while you finalize those Christmas gifts, you can watch Spirited, which is available to stream today on AppleTV+.


*This interview has been edited for length and clarity

Ty Cole is a New York-based entertainment reporter and writer for BET.com who covers pop culture, music, and lifestyle. Follow his latest musings on Twitter @IamTyCole.

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