Conchords keep on flying

Funnyman Jemaine Clement is to star in a new Hollywood blockbuster with US comedy king Steve Carell.

The Flight of the Conchords star has lent his voice to a cartoon character in big-budget animated film Despicable Me alongside Carell (Get Smart, The 40-Year-Old Virgin), veteran actress Julie Andrews and controversial English comic Russell Brand.

Clement and comedy partner Bret McKenzie are on a high after winning a staggering six Emmy Award nominations for their HBO show.

And McKenzie's mum Deidre Tarrant has revealed they have now postponed plans to disband the Conchords.

Tarrant told Sunday News: "I think they will go on.

"Would you stop this while it is still on this sort sort of a roll?

"We want them to be there. They are really excited about the nominations."

The mates, who won a Grammy for best comedy album last year, want to pursue their solo acting careers and had planned to call it a day.

McKenzie said late last year: "The second series seems to be like it would a good end to the show.

"I feel like another 10 (episodes) ... that will be enough."

Now they are tipped to win the award for outstanding comedy series and Clement's in the running for best lead actor in a comedy

They could pick up other gongs for best directing, outstanding writing for a comedy, outstanding sound mixing for a comedy or drama series and outstanding original music and lyrics at the star-studded ceremony in Los Angeles on September 20.

Despicable Me, produced by Ice Age film maker Chris Meledrandi, is set for release next year. It centres around villain Groo, played by Carell, who hatches a plan to steal the moon.

But his evil intentions are threatened by three orphaned girls who want him to become the dad they desperately need.

Clement is taking a break in Greece while McKenzie is keeping a low profile in Wellington.

Tarrant said the duo would "surface soon", with HBO set to release the second series of the hit show on DVD next month.

"They want a break away and (get some) new ideas," she said.

"They have both got other projects in the pipeline.

"They just want some real downtime."

Meanwhile, stand-up comedian Rhys Darby who plays the Flight of the Conchords' manager in the TV series is dominating the small screen here, fronting ads for new mobile phone company 2degrees.

Darby has also hit Hollywood, playing the role of Norman, Jim Carrey's boss in blockbuster Yes Man.

Sunday News