Comic Chris Rock, 35, may be known for his foul-mouthed TV stand-up specials, but he decided not to rely on his trademark comedy style for his starring role in Down to Earth a remake of the 1978 Warren Beatty film Heaven Can Wait which opened Friday.
"I think movies are too nasty right now as it is," Rock tells TV Guide Online. "It's a romantic comedy! What romantic comedy is rated R?
"A movie with me, I guess you kind of expect an R," he continues, but suggests that's an unfair assumption to make about his work. "My stand-up act, yeah, there's a lot of cursing in it. My TV show [HBO's The Chris Rock Show], not really that much cursing. We could pretty much show any of that stuff on regular TV."
Actually, Rock insists he'd originally aimed for a PG rating for the film, which ended up with a PG-13. "[Paramount] thought I was crazy... but it's Heaven Can Wait," he says. "Why should it be an R? I don't even know how it got to [be] PG-13. This is a real clean movie; I think parents are real happy when they can take their kids to see the 'cursing guy.'"
The wiseacre also points out he never pressured his directors, Chris and Paul Weitz, to up their filth quotient just for him. Laughs Rock: "I love American Pie [their 1999 directorial hit], but I didn't want them to top themselves. What, am I gonna [expletive] a cake or something?"