Jim Gaffigan knows a few things about being a dad. The actor and comedian is famously the dad of five kids—Jack, Marre, Katie, and budding YouTube stars Michael and Patrick—and was was able to tap into his parenting skills for his recent role as aloof but loving dad Lorenzo in the new Disney/Pixar movie Luca. In the movie, sea creatures Lorenzo and wife Daniela (played by Maya Rudolph) struggle to keep their son Luca protected from what they see as the dangers of the surface. When Luca’s mom threatens to send him to live with his creepy uncle in the deep, he flees to land, where his parents are forced to then venture in an effort to find him.
That struggle to both nurture your children and set them up for future self-sufficiency is something Gaffigan has dealt with himself. As he tells us in the video above, “I’m very much of the attitude that I want my kids to go out there and scrape their knees and learn to struggle and fail, because I think half of the battle is getting up after you fail rather than just falling down.” Gaffigan also says he hopes to turn his kids into productive members of the work force as soon as possible, remarking, “I want my kids to have a job that they’re bad at when they’re a teenager as opposed to when they’re 30.”
Gaffigan also says he was as susceptible to Luca’s sumptuous imagery as anyone, especially given that his family hasn’t been able to take their frequent adventurous vacations due to the pandemic. As Gaffigan relates, “I’m so affected by visual things. I watched it and all I did was crave pasta and gelato. At the end of the movie, I was like, ‘I’ve got to get to Italy.’” Gaffigan says the movie’s small-town setting was particularly inspiring to him because “when we go on vacation, that’s where we want to go. We don’t want to go to a tourist trap and buy the tourist food. We want to go into some small room and get a pasta dish that someone just made feet away.”
Read our review of Luca here. For Cameron Scheetz’s thoughts on the film as queer metaphor, click here.
Image credit: Disney/Pixar