On a recent sunny Saturday afternoon on the Universal Studios back lot, several journalists are preparing to interview the cast of Evan Almighty, many with one question on their minds:

Where's God?

Most everyone here is impressed by the performance of Morgan Freeman, who is back playing God four years after he, um, created the role in Bruce Almighty. But Freeman himself is nowhere to be found. This is not too surprising, as Freeman is a busy actor whose talents are constantly in demand; but it does mean the most authoritative voice in the movie won't be here to chat it up.

Not to worry, at least his prophet is here. Steve Carell returns as Evan Baxter, the anchorman—now congressman—who gave Jim Carrey so much grief in Bruce, and got so much grief in return. Evan was a relatively minor character in the earlier movie, but now he takes center stage, as God tells him to build an ark—and, for good measure, compels him to wear the beard and robes of a biblical patriarch.

Carell, whose star rose between the Almighty pictures thanks to The Office and The 40-Year-Old Virgin, says he loved working with Freeman. "He has a way of performing that is so natural and so heartfelt that I really just liked being around him," he says. And he adds that he wasn't worried at all about his co-stars stealing the movie from him, the way he arguably stole Bruce from Carrey.

"The movie is only as good as the sum of its parts, and the funnier it is, the better it is for everybody," he says. "And I have felt the same way about anything I've been in. I don't need to be the person who's being funny. … To me, it's just a sort of joyous experience to have other people make me laugh. I frankly enjoy that more than anything, when others ...

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