Steve Carell has said he did not recognise fellow Hollywood actor Will Ferrell’s voice in the new Despicable Me movie.

Despicable Me 4 reunites the US comedy actors, who both starred in Anchorman: The Legend Of Ron Burgundy and its sequel Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, along with Bewitched and Melinda And Melinda.

Carell, 61, has led the Despicable Me franchise as supervillain turned family man Felonious Gru Sr since the first 2010 animated film, with comedian and actress Kristen Wiig playing his love interest, while Ferrell joined the cast for the latest instalment.

Will Ferrell and Steve Carell (Yui Mok/PA)

Carell told ITV’s This Morning: “I threw it out there after the last one (Despicable Me 3)… someone asked who would be your perfect next villain, and I threw Will out as a potential choice.

“I didn’t even ask him about it…. he did it… He jumped at the chance.”

He added that he did not realise Ferrell would play Maxime Le Mal, an evil character with a French accent who attempts to hurt Gru’s family.

Carell said: “I did not recognise his voice. I knew it was him. But I thought, ‘Is that him?’ Because it did not sound like him.”

Steve Carell and Kristen Wiig with the Minion characters (Ian West/PA)

He added that the experience was “so much fun” because he, Ferrell and Wiig are friends who worked together on the Anchorman sequel.

Carell said he was not prepared for the “global phenomenon” of Gru and his yellow henchmen, the Minions.

“I give it all to the minions,” he said. “And in this one there are minions called mega minions that are minions that have been given superpowers.

“And it just goes to show that no matter how powerful a minion is, they’re still minions and they’re going to screw things up.”