The Huffington Post writer Fabio Periera spent "10 Minutes with Kellan Lutz" chatting at the Eclipse Gum Party in Baton Rouge:
I'm doing pretty good. So I understand you're in Louisiana filming the last film in the Twilight franchise?
Yeah, I just flew back in. I've been really blessed with these movies. This new one is a big, seven-month movie but it's nice to have time to fly back and forth to LA and other places just because you end up having a week off here and there. So it's nice. I'm back here, it's like my fourth trip flying back. And I love Baton Rouge, I'm really happy shooting here. I shot here back in May, I had a movie that, you know, wasn't as hectic with fans because not all the Twilight (actors) were here, but I just love this town and I love being a tour guide for the castmates.
Totally. So, you're currently working on the last Twilight film and you've been working with these people for quite a while now. Are you feeling a little bit sad as it ends?
No, not at all. This whole franchise is definitely special to be apart of. It's really different than, say, the Lord of the Rings movies where you're down in New Zealand for years. These movies are kind of easy and they don't get tiresome. You work for three or four months on each movie and then you go home and with in those time periods, we have weeks off because we do block shooting. So, all the werewolves shoot for a couple weeks and then the vampires shoot. We come and go a lot. We don't really--I mean, none of us have gotten sick of each other, we all love each other. We're all very responsible and we take on the opportunities that being part of this franchise has given us in different field and parts of the industry and in life. So, I haven't even thought about it, it's not going to end really until 2012 and a few months after that--flying around, doing junkets. But no, I'm definitely not sad... It's not work, you know?
So, switching gears a little bit. You were named to People's Sexiest Men Alive list. What's that like for you when you get these, um... awards, I guess...
(Laughs.) It's very flattering. I remember, I've seen magazines like that and I don't really watch TV. But you know, Ryan Reynolds is in there all the time and now on the cover, and it's very humbling that People magazine would have me be a part of that.
What does your family think?
My--my family (Laughs.) I mean, I fell into acting. I've always kind of been "crazy Kellan" and just full of energy and doing my own thing that once I got into acting, it kind of just escalated all that attention for them in a way. Because I like to make my own attention. I just went back to Iowa, where my grandparents live, and I try to see them as much as I can. And they love it. They watch all my movies. We're in a small town, so it's like everyone knows them by their first name, there's one street light and they tell (their friends) that I'm going to come there. They're like, "Oh, he's just going to have his friends over,' because last time I was there the whole town came by and I was just signing autographs. Which I fine, but you think you can get away from that by going to see your grandparents in the middle of nowhere. This time I was like, "Ok, let's just do a big barbeque. We can have everyone come over and take pictures," because I only had a day and a half there. I wanted to go and hang out on the farm, I wanted to see my cousins and stuff and I just didn't have time to spend a whole day doing that again. And we decided to do a dinner and had a bunch of people come over and I stopped by the local gas station and, everyone knows each other, so their [friends] ask, "What are you doing?"
"Oh, this is my grandson, he's from LA--from Hollywood. He's an actor. He's in People Magazine!" They just had this whole (thing) down and I'm just like, "Great! Throw me under the bus like that!" (Laughs.) But they're sweethearts, and it puts such a smile on their face and if I can do that and it tacks on a couple more years to their life, (then) by all means, I want to.
Do you ever miss normalcy?
I've never been normal.
What do you mean?
I mean, I'm really down to earth but I mean--I'm normal but I am very random. I can't just sit down at a computer. I can't just do the normal things. I'm always doing something--being outside, doing things that a lot of people just don't do and I look at that. But in my normal life, I'm still Kellan. Yeah, Twilight's been a world of a change and has really helped me in my career, but I still do the same things I've always done. I still go bowling with friends and go to batting cages and I still go snowboarding all the time, walking my dog, hiking. That hasn't changed. Yeah, the paparazzi get annoyed when I'm (Laughs) and they didn't realize to pack warm clothes. But no, I haven't changed.
It's not news that James Franco is a "Twilight" fan (we found that out at the Toronto Film Festival), but we didn't know just how much he loved the series. Apparently he went as far as to ask Bill Condon if he could be a part of "Breaking Dawn," and Bill turned him down!
Maybe it's because James' star power rivals that of Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner, or maybe it's because James openly admitted he found the story's sex scene to be a "letdown after all that buildup," but for whatever reason Mr. Franco just couldn't find a way into Forks, Washington. That doesn't mean he's given up, though. James told Jimmy Kimmel last night on "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" (via the L.A. Times) that he had been talking with "Milk" producer Bruce Cohen, who is also producing the Oscars, about doing a skit with Rob, Kristen and Taylor (long before he was selected to host).
"We'd been talking about doing something, and we'd been talking for six months, and I wanted to do a bit with the 'Twilight' kids. I wanted to be a part of that movie, by the way," James said. "I thought, 'Well, Bruce, maybe I could sing with Rob Pattinson or something on the Oscars.' We figured they took themselves a little too seriously and they wouldn't be up for that."
Though it sounds like James may have given up on his "Twilight" dream, it all worked out for the best considering he's now hosting the big night. All we have to say is: It's not too late, James! How amazing would it be if Robert Pattinson and James Franco opened up the show with a singing skit? Rob certainly doesn't take himself too seriously to be interested in that, and now that James is hosting he must have some extra sway.
Or, if he can't get Rob, Kristen or Taylor to play along, maybe James and Anne Hathaway could just do a skit themselves? James said he wanted to be a part of the films, and we could see him as Edward and Anne as Bella. Not as good as the real deal, but we'd buy it.
MTV'sHollywood Crushchatted with David Slade last week in anticipation of the 'Eclipse' DVD release and he explained to them why he thinks 'Eclipse' is the best film so far:
"I think it had the best story," he said. "And the most action."
That's all well and good, David, but we think you had a little something to do with it, too.
"You know, I did my best," he said with a chuckle. "The director of the film is always the harshest critic of the film. What you do is spend two years or a-year-and-a-half or whatever it is intensely, emotionally working on something. You watch it a thousand times. What you're doing is assembling it together, and then there's a bunch of cracks, and you're closing the gaps in those cracks. And then, what happens in the end, you go, and you start noticing those cracks again. It's the same with any film."
Yes, David clearly is his own worst critic, but he did admit the film had a lot going for it.
"I certainly do believe we had one of the best stories," he said. "'Eclipse' is the fans' favorite book, behind 'Twilight,' the first book. There's so much in terms of backstory and understanding characters. It has a very clear progression to Bella's transformation; not physically but emotionally. That's something that is important. That, along with the fact that we had so many fun backstory moments. We had a Western. We had a 16th century historical piece. We had a '30s period piece, as well as the rest of it."
It did sort of feel like "Eclipse" had several movie-within-movie moments, didn't it? We can only hope "Breaking Dawn" lives up to its predecessor.
I Love my Twi-Friends! I love that we always help and support each other! Like when I asked for someone to help me with my awesome new sidebar chalkboard bubbles, Betti stepped in! So in return, I want to pimp Betti's Fan Fiction One Shot:
'Eclipse' DVD: Our 12 Favorite Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart Commentary Quotes
Can we all just agree that Robert Pattinson is one strange dude? That doesn't mean we don't love him. He's just a weird guy—which is why we were so excited to hear the "Eclipse" DVD commentary he recorded with his "Twilight Saga" costar Kristen Stewart. The two weren't in the same city—actually, they were in different countries: Rob in Los Angeles and Kristen in Montreal —but some sort of conference call situation allowed the duo to record a commentary track together. It's clear the two are good friends, since they spent most of the movie teasing each other and reminiscing about the shoot.
Most of all, though, we got another major piece of evidence to prove our "Rob is odd" theory: basically the entirety of the DVD commentary. We watched it earlier this week—the tough things we do for you, Crushers—and jotted down 12 of the most bizarre (and, coincidentally, the funniest) quotes from the Robsten chatfest. Not surprisingly, most of them come from Rob. Our favorites are after the jump. (Trust us, they're just as weird in context.)
Scene: Xavier becomes a vampire Rob: Xavier would make a wonderful hamburger... He's just dripping with spread. Kristen: Ew, that's so gross. Rob: Okay, how do we be serious about this?
Scene: The first meadow kiss Rob: There's a lot of kissing in this film. I noticed that when I was watching. After a while, it made me a little uncomfortable.
Scene: Bella gets in her truck. Edward is waiting for her. Bella (in movie): "You scared me." Rob (in commentary): I was trying to. (low voice) I thought you'd like that. (lower voice) I'm Batman.
Scene: Bella goes to the Wolf Pack house for the first time Kristen: She's allowed to have other relationships. Rob (heated): Why? No, she's not allowed to have other relationships! If I ever saw my girlfriend go around to this bunch of guys' house with all their little shirt—with all their little bellies out and their fake tan nipples and their iron-on tattoos... Kristen: Edward is just a little bit more mature than you. Rob: Mature? Kristen: Yep. Rob: Nah. Kristen: He can handle it.
Scene: Boo Boo Stewart comes on screen Rob: (in Yogi Bear voice) Heya Boo Boo!
Scene: An establishing shot of a beautiful lake Rob: Have you ever gone to like the bottom of a swimming pool and just looked up at the top? Kristen: Yeah... Rob: Very scary. Kristen: I think it's really cool. Rob: (quietly singing) Doo doo doo doooooo
Scene: I don't remember! Rob: See, your wig looks really good there. Kristen: No it does not. Rob: It looks like Anne Hathaway's hair.
Scene: Carlisle talks to the group about fighting newborns Rob: Peter also uses his wig as a cereal bowl... He'll sometimes have some, like, Top Ramen in it.
Scene: The tent Rob: God, he's so brazen. I really don't like Jacob. Look at him with his tattoo. Ugh. Kristen: Look at him cradling, his little head tucked in there. Rob: You look like you're milking him.
Scene: The fight Rob: That's the sequel, Kellan and the wolf. That's going to be a magical relationship in the next one. Rob (later): My mouth hole looks really black.
Scene: Edward bites Victoria's head off Rob: Come on, eat it! Mmmm, yummy. Butterscotch.
Scene: The meadow, part two Rob: God, what is Edward going on about half the time? Kristen: Does it matter? Rob: It doesn't matter.
Kristen Stewart stressed during Twilight Eclipse shoot: 'There were tears'
VANCOUVER — When David Slade appeared on the pop-culture dais in the wake of his breakout Sundance smash, Hard Candy, featuring a plucky would-be victim in Ellen Page, the last thing you'd expect to learn about the man was his deep conviction in the concept of romantic love.
A story that hung on the threat of sexual assault involving a minor, Hard Candy seemed like such a testament to the baser elements of the human animal that its director assumed the shape of a next-gen Neil Labute — a creator capable of balancing absolute contempt for the human species with an arid sense of humour.
It's a dicey endeavour, but one Slade pulled off with a dramatically elegant sleight of hand.
Slade reached into the same bag of tricks when he called the shots on The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, which hits DVD and Blu-ray on Saturday.
The story of a young woman named Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) who falls madly in love with a vampire stud named Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), only to be hounded by a lovesick werewolf named Jacob (Taylor Lautner), the whole Twilight Saga deals with a young woman at risk.
In this case, Stewart is at risk of losing her mortal soul. In Hard Candy, Page was at risk of losing a similar chunk of self, as well as — we suspected — her life.
"Hard Candy was definitely a different beast in some ways, because it was a contained, two-person drama, with Ellen Page raging away in a brilliant performance," says Slade.
"Eclipse was a lot broader . . . but it's still a character-based drama. That's what I really enjoyed about it," he says. "I think it's also a much more adult film than (the previous two), because the characters are becoming more mature. There's loads of fun stuff to play with, and because we treated it as a drama, the transformation (of character) takes place."
The substance was always bloody and meaty, but Slade says the pragmatics of the whole ordeal were anything but easy. He feels exhausted just thinking about the experience.
"It was a 50-day shoot, with many 16-hour days," he says.
To make things even more challenging, the cast was losing itself in its own Twilight cosmos. All actors have to surrender to their roles and inhabit their characters to some degree for the duration of production, so Slade was pleased his cast was taking the whole project seriously and sincerely.
Everyone was committed, he says.
"Kristen, in particular, was very tough on herself."
Slade says because Stewart didn't pull from her own life and her own person to play Bella Swan, she found it personally demanding to find Bella's truth.
"She would say, 'I don't know who Bella is to me.' In a lot of ways, I think she felt Bella was the antithesis to her, which presented a lot of challenges for Kristen. . . . She would beat herself up about it, because she wants to be there. She never wants to leave a scene undone.
"There were tears," says Slade.
"But you move on and you keep going. . . . Even in rehearsals with Rob (Pattinson), there was a similar spiralling that would happen."
Actors are people. They get insecure, and any human being facing the weight of expectation surrounding Twilight would have to buckle, if only a little. To offset as much of the thespian obsessing as possible, Slade says he's learned the value of preparation.
He says he rehearses his actors as much as possible, so they're comfortable with the material and their characters, and he gets to focus on the minutiae of performance without the intrusive presence of a camera.
"You're always looking to get the emotional truth from the performance," he says. And with Twilight, that emotional truth is nothing less than the blood-red heart of romantic love — which pounds away in Slade's heart, even though, at 41, he's supposed to be a member of a more cynical generation.
"I do believe in romantic love. How could you not, if you're lucky enough to find it? It seems like we live in a much more sarcastic . . . cynical culture, and I don't like to use the c-word. There's the idea out there maybe that (romantic love) isn't cool. But true love is a wonderful thing."
Slade says romantic love is the gooey hook on the Twilight narrative, but after reading Stephenie Myers' books, he also feels they address a lot more issues than mere vampires and teen romance.
"It's a love story that's dealing with the problems of the last century," he says. "And I got the best book. We had the epic battle, the action . . . the whole thing."
Slade says he's leaving at a high point in the story, and that's one of the other big lessons he's learned along the way: Preparation will save your bacon, but timing is what makes it tasty.
He'd love to share what he's doing next, Slade says, but he can't. At the very least, we can rest assured it will be interesting, well-prepared and approached with an open heart and a vampire-proof carotid.
Twilight Saga Eclipse hits store shelves Dec. 4 on Blu-ray and DVD.
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