updated 07/28/2011 AT 8:00 AM ET
•originally published 07/28/2011 AT 9:00 AM ET
To play Gargamel, the villainous sorcerer determined to destroy the lovable Smurfs, Hank Azaria had to put on fake bushy eyebrows, practice his evil grin – and act alongside a cat.
“If I wasn’t a cat person before this film, I became one during the course of shooting,” Azaria tells PEOPLE of his feline costar, who plays Gargamel’s sidekick, Azrael. “One thing I can tell you about the cat? Cat’s a good kisser.”
While misanthropic Gargamel might hate the Smurfs, and occasionally shows signs of hating his only friend, in the end, he has love for Azrael. And in the new live-action film, the two show it.
“In order to get them to lick your face, you have to put cat food on your face,” Azaria says. “Sound good? Anyone out there want to act with a cat? I’ve got a lot of leftover cat food you can apply to yourself.”
See what else Hank Azaria has to say about acting with cats in the video above!
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