Russell Brand

Jeffrey Ufberg/

Parents, be warned! There's a new Easter Bunny coming to town.

His name is Russell Brand. The Brit funnyman plays the beloved rabbit in the upcoming comedy Hop—and he plans on take full advantage of his new position as springtime's answer to Santa Claus...

Kids are now going to think you're the Easter Bunny.
Exactly! I'll make them do whatever I want. I'm gonna take their money. I'm going to mess with people's lives. I'm going to own Easter. And you know who the last person to do that was?...Jesus!

So you're saying you're the news Jesus? [Laughs]
Yep, I'm the new Jesus! [Laughs] Or I'm the new Abraham! I'm the new Moses! I can do anything. I'm the new Easter Bunny and I s--t Easter eggs!

Before Hop hits theaters in April, Brand costars opposite Helen Mirren in director Julie Taymor's new movie adaptation of The Tempest. Brand and Mirren also costar in the upcoming remake of Arthur.

Who has a naughtier sense of humor: you or Dame Helen?
I can rein in it when I need to. She just says mad stuff.

She always saying stuff and I think, "Hold on. Steady." I think she's edgy. She's like a punk duchess.

Do you call her Dame?
Sometimes. If you're talking and you say, "Well, Dame Helen will be here shortly so you should go," it makes you feel sort of important to say it. But she doesn't like it. She's like, "Oh, come on—it's Helen…or Hels!"

Did you ever think you'd be doing Shakespeare with Helen Mirren?
I've hoped to Shakespeare because I've trained to do it. But you never know how these things are going to come about.

A lot of people don't know you've studied acting.
No and why would they? I suppose I don't bring that to the forefront. But, yeah, it's good to have an opportunity to venture into this kind of territory.

How about doing Shakespeare on Broadway one day?
I don't know. That's a lot more on it. You have to do at least three months. No, f--k it! It's too much pressure.

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