Interview with Dennis Quaid, star of Yours, Mine, and Ours, conducted on November 30, 2005, by Greg Shull, editor of Preview, and other family-friendly media.
Q: Have you seen the original film?
Dennis: No. I didn’t want to be influenced by it. But as far as remakes, they’re always redoing Shakespeare. You make them fresh. You make them for this generation.
Q: In what ways do you think it’s more difficult to make family films these days? To make them appealing, you’ve got a really broad spectrum.
Dennis: If you make a good movie, I think people will come see it. It makes it more universal. This I always saw as a romantic comedy for kids. And so, most of the time, I know when I go see family films like with my son, especially when he was like nine or whatever, it would be a really nice nod for me. There’s nothing in it for me. This I think has something for everybody, parents as well.
Q: What do you think about spanking?
Dennis: I’m not really a believer in spanking kids, to tell you the truth. I think it teaches them to hit people as a way of solving things. I grew up in a generation where I think I got a couple of half-hearted spankings. I’m just not really a disciplinarian. I never had to do it with my son. I think the only thing I ever did was I swatted his hand when he touched the stove one time. And I never did it again. It killed me.
Q: The press notes said that you and Russo swapped roles in this film, that she’s more the disciplinarian and you’re more easy going in real life.
Dennis: Yeah, that’s what I heard. Well, I’m not really the disciplinarian. But I’m not her style, in the film, either. I’m kind of in between.
Q: Is this the most chaotic set you’ve ever been on?
Dennis: Probably. Not only did we have 18 kids, but then we had 18 stand-ins for the kids. We had a back-up dog. And a pig.
Q: One of the elements the film deals with is large families, which haven’t been all that popular the past 30 years. What’s your take on that?
Dennis: I don’t know. Some people may see this movie and say, “Well, I’m definitely using birth control.” (laughter) It might be a warning.