With Finding Dory, Eugene Levy dives into his latest dad role

From American Pie to Schitt's Creek, Eugene Levy is very familiar with playing dads. This week, the SCTV alum makes a splash as Charlie, the loving and protective blue tang papa fish in Disney Pixar's latest, Finding Dory.

Canadian actor voices Dory's loving father, Charlie, in Disney Pixar's latest

'Family the most important thing': Eugene Levy on Finding Dory's central theme

6 years ago
Duration 1:09
The Canadian actor, who voices a role in the new Disney-Pixar film Finding Dory.

"Dad" is one role Canadian actor Eugene Levy is very familiar with both onscreen and off.

The SCTV alum makes his latest splash as the voice of Charlie — the loving and protective blue tang papa fish whose daughter (voiced by Ellen DeGeneres) suffers from short term memory loss — in Disney Pixar's latest 3D animated movie Finding Dory.

Canadian actor Eugene Levy arrives at the premiere of Finding Dory at the El Capitan Theatre in Los Angeles on June 8, 2016. (Chris Pizzello/Invision/The Associated Press)

In the new film, Levy said his biggest challenge was giving director Andrew Stanton what he wanted.

"I wish I could say it's about going through the scenes like a normal actor would go through a scene onstage or in front of a movie camera," the comic actor told CBC News.

"But it's really about just hitting every line and giving the director options."

Levy's fictional fatherly abilities have been proven most memorably through his portrayal of the world's most embarrassing dad: Noah Levenstein from the American Pie comedy franchise.

Currently, he appears as family patriarch Johnny Rose in the CBC-TV sitcom Schitt's Creek, for which he shares screen time with his real-life kids Dan and Sarah Levy.

"I love stories that deal with family because family is probably the most important thing in all our lives when you get right down to it," he said.

"And they're usually kind of rich in humour."

Ellen DeGeneres voices the lead character, Dory. (Chris Pizzello/Invision/The Associated Press)

Finding Dory is the long-awaited sequel to 2003's instant classic, Finding Nemo. 

The new instalment sees Dory set out to find her long-lost parents with the help of her best friends Marlin (Albert Brooks) and Nemo (Hayden Rolence), who gather clues along the way.

Despite her earlier experience with Finding Nemo, DeGeneres said she still felt challenged to move audiences with nothing but her voice in the new film.

"This is, to me, harder than acting with your body and our facial expressions," she said in a recent interview with The Associated Press. 

"It's challenging to act with only your voice."

Finding Dory opens wide across Canada on Friday.

With files from The Associated Press