New Moon Set Visit, Day Two: Pattinson's Pain, Lautner's Secret Wish
More observations from the Vancouver set of The Twilight Saga: New Moon!
In Part One of our New Moon set report, RT was among the first reporters to see the Volturi vampires who will be introduced in this November's The Twilight Saga: New Moon. We brought you a detailed description of the Volturi's underground chambers, told you what Dakota Fanning and Michael Sheen look like in character as Jane and Aro, respectively, and described screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg's positive reaction to watching Bella meet the Volturi for the first time.
Today, we're thrilled to launch our ongoing "New Moon Mondays" with Part Two of our New Moon set report! Read on for the details (including our on-set observations of Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, director Chris Weitz, and our chat with Jacob Black himself, Taylor Lautner) and check back every week for new Twilight columns, news, and interviews!
When Rotten Tomatoes arrived on the set of The Twilight Saga: New Moon for a second day of observation on the Volturi stage, filming was already underway on a pivotal scene. We'd been promised we'd see wire work, so I immediately guessed that a fight scene was on the docket. Would we see Edward (Robert Pattinson) thrown about by the hulking Volturi guard, Felix? After all, actor Daniel Cudmore (X-Men 3's Colossus) had been spotted on set the previous day, leafing through magazines between scenes.
Perhaps an Edward-Felix fight had been filmed, but it was not while we were on set. In the middle of the Volturi chamber, the scenario was similar to the previous day: Bella (Kristen Stewart), Edward (Pattinson), and Alice (Ashley Greene) stood facing off against their Volturi hosts, Aro (Michael Sheen), Jane (Dakota Fanning), and Alec (Cameron Bright). In the scene, Edward rushes forward to stop Aro from "testing" vampire powers on Bella, only to suffer the crippling pain of Jane's power. It was a tough scene; the set was eerily quiet, save for the sound of Pattinson's body hitting the ground with every take.
While the first Twilight film used plenty of wire work to achieve the look of vampires running/climbing with effortless ease (an effect criticized for a lack of weightiness and realism), wires here were being used in quite a different way. Stunt coordinator JJ Makaro, who paused for a moment to chat, said that the crew was making deliberate pains to make New Moon's action look more realistic.
"We have wire work, but we're really trying to not do a lot of it," he explained. "We don't want to get into the Hong Kong - floaty stuff that you see all the time, vampires hanging in the air and all of that. It's a tough call, because wires are wires, and the inherent problem with them is exactly that. They get floaty on you. So we're having a heck of a time trying to find the balance that gives us enough to make it supernatural without it being over the top."
Pattinson wore a dark burgundy hooded robe, his chest exposed. And yes, it was impeccably hairless and like alabaster, just as Meyer wrote it. Girls will swoon. Greene stood next to him, wearing a white and gray striped robe and red gloves. Stewart stood between them in black jeans, a short sleeved shirt, and sneakers.
As Pattinson rushed forward, wires attached to his clothing were rigged to jerk him back the moment that Jane's attack -- an invisible psychosomatic blast of pain -- hit him. He grimaced in pain as the camera closed in, neck muscles straining with effort. Finally, he fell to his knees before collapsing on the ground with a loud thud.
Behind the stage, Meyer and screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg sat together, nodding in agreement. It looked good on the monitors.
One problem: the wires were tugging Pattinson's robe too much, and would be visible in the film. The crew reset and shot it again. Thud. We began to appreciate Pattinson's commitment.
Next: We get kicked off the set, Stewart turns it on for the cameras, and Pattinson plays up the pain