Fox was always a cartoon, comic book and anime fan, but knew nothing about Speed Racer before his name was mentioned as being up for the role of Racer X. "So when I found out that the Wachowskis were doing Speed Racer and were interested in me for it, I immediately went on the Internet, and as soon as I saw Racer X, I was like, I think that looks like me. I kinda think I would be a good Racer X," Fox said. "So then I was like, Dammit, I'm going to win this role! I went and read for it, and then waited quite a while.... It was the project last spring that I was dying to do, and I would have been so incredibly disappointed if I didn't."
Fox promises that his interpretation of Racer X is steeped in the mystery that has made the character a favorite among fans of the cartoon. Fox says "Racer X is all about mystery. And it's all about not just disguise of suit, but it's disguise of voice - he's, like, impenetrable...."
Performing in a high-action film like Speed Racer gives actors the opportunity to immerse themselves in stunts, something that Fox jumped at. "Part of the fun that I had was that I got to be a badass, and work with the most insane stunt guys. I'm proud I did it all. They didn't double me," Fox says. He continued, "The stunt guys were like, 'We think you can do everything. Do you want to do everything?' 'Damn right I want to do everything. I want to do everything to the point where you think it looks like crap. That's when I need you to step in and help me out.' [During] some of it I was just dying. I would do these fight sequences in this leather thing, and the amount of sweat was extraordinary. I was coming home ultra-dehydrated.
Speed Racer is a live-action adaptation of the popular cartoon of the same name, which is in turn an adaptation of the Japanese anime series Mach GoGoGo. Directed by the Wachowski Brothers, Speed Racer stars Emile Hirsch, John Goodman, Susan Sarandon, Christina Ricci, Scott Porter, Matthew Fox and Roger Allam. Speed Racer zooms into theatres May 9, 2008.