New Moon Director Chris Weitz Interview

Posted by: Michael

As promised we have more Twilight coverage for you Twihards. This go around its an interview with Chris Weitz from Comic Con. He talks about the challenges and the fun in shooting the new sequel to Twilight... New Moon.

In Twilight New Moon Bella Swan is devastated by the abrupt departure of her vampire love, Edward Cullen, but her spirit is rekindled by her growing friendship with Jacob Black. Suddenly she finds herself drawn into the world of the werewolves, ancestral enemies of the vampires, and finds her loyalties tested.

Q: Chris, what was challenging about taking over the helm for this film?

Chris: In fact, when I weigh it all, I had tremendous benefits. There was an established hit. There was a wonderful cast in place. There really weren’t many challenges. The people I was working with weren’t challenging. They were lovely. People want to go see it. The hardest thing, when you’re making a movie, is hoping that someone’s going to go see it.

There’s always the fear of letting down the fans, but the mantra for me was to be honest to the book. That’s not always the case when you’re making a film for a studio because sometimes they think that they know better what fans are going to like, than what’s in the book. But, Summit understands about this.

Q: Did you have to fight for that?

Chris: No. They understand that if you disappoint the fans of the book, you’re in big trouble. So, as long as you keep to that, you’re in great shape. That’s the only challenge, really.

Q: Were there any surprises in directing this?

Chris: I think the surprise for me was the tremendous infusion of oxygen that came when the cast showed up. You’ve got a script, and you’ve got that all squared away. You search for your locations, and that’s enormously tedious. I feel like I saw every tree in British Columbia. And then, these wonderful people show up, whose job it is to impersonate other people and creatures, and that brings this delightful element to it. That’s when I really, really started to enjoy the process.

Q: How hard was it to shoot, now that the cast is so much more popular? Did you have to have extra security?

Chris: It was with Rob and Kristen, and all of the cast. It’s not just Rob. It’s really anybody who embodies, for these fans, the characters that they love. In the very best way, they have a hard time distinguishing between the love that they feel for the characters and the love that they feel for people they don’t know, who are the actors. So, yeah, you need security and you need people to protect them from the love of the fans, which is different from being the bodyguard for someone that someone is trying to assassinate. It’s a good thing, but sometimes you do worry about people getting crushed.

Q: Did the fans try to sneak into a lot of the shooting locations?

Chris: Yeah, they tried to find their way to wherever they thought we were going to be. In a rather naughty way, we would sometimes give out fake information, as to where we were going to be shooting the next day.

But, it was just so that we could get our work done because otherwise we’d spend all our time saying, “Oh, that girl is in the back of the shot, please ask her to leave.” There was quite a bit of that.

Q: Did anything happen with this film that you weren’t expecting?

Chris: Yeah. It was in Italy, where each day, we gradually realized there were more and more Twilight fans showing up in this small town in Montepulciano. It became harder and hard to get to set, and it became harder and harder for me, and I’m used to going unnoticed, to get anywhere from the production office to the set, without heads looking up and people wanting to take photographs. Eventually, entire roads were jammed, so that we couldn’t get from one location to another.

Q: What did you do?

Chris: We decided to work around it. We decided that it was a good thing and, karmically, it was best to just thank them for being there, ask them to be quiet when we were shooting, and just try to find work-arounds to still get what we wanted to.

Q: Does it help that these films are being done pretty close together?

Chris: When David Slade came on as director of Eclipse, he came and visited me and I showed him everything I could to help get him acclimatized. I think that it’s great that Melissa Rosenberg is doing all of the scripts because there’s a coherence from one script to the next, and she knows all the characters so well, by now.

Q: Why do you think these books have succeeded so well as films?

Chris: I think it’s the feeling that, in some way, the vision presented on the screen was not so different from what they dreamed up in their head, when they were reading it, and that’s a very difficult thing to do because you’re presenting a contrary image to what any reader’s experience is. There’s something very sacred about the experience of reading a book. There’s something very extraordinary about a film, when you’re in a darkened room, seeing it. And, if those two things can blend, in some good way, then that’s great.


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