It ain’t easy being undead. The Twilight movies are getting harder to make as the books’ plots become more involved and cover more of the characters’ back stories, says actor Nikki Reed, who co-stars again in the third movie Eclipse as vampire Rosalie.
“In order to make a series, the story has to unfold, other characters have to come in,” Reed says. “It adds a layer as each film progresses and it’s more difficult to shoot.”
Eclipse, filmed last summer and fall in Vancouver and currently in theatres, delves into Rosalie’s history, with Reed filming scenes set in the Depression era when her character was still human, a naive society girl.
Just a few minutes of those scenes ended up in the finished movie, another challenge to making the movies.
“I hope they show up in an exended cut [on DVD],” Reed says over the phone from Los Angeles, where the Eclipse PR machine continues rolling.
Stephenie Meyer’s third novel gives more depth to Rosalie, who is hostile in the first two books to the human teen played by Kristen Stewart.
“I had always been excited about making it to this film, obviously.” says Reed. “Just for the sake of finally being able to justify Rosalie’s behaviour. I’ve carried that responsibility with me, making sure that people get where she’s coming from.”
The scenes, filmed around old West End buildings and the Hotel Vancouver, required hours in the hair and makeup chair to recreate Rosalie’s elaborate period look.
“That’s the process of moviemaking,” she says. “I also trained for seven weeks and didn’t end up in the battle sequences — that’s a very silly mistake that we made.”
A glitch in the lighting of her action scenes meant her work couldn’t be used in the movie’s climactic conflict between werewolves and good and bad vampires.
Eclipse started filming in mid-August last year, under the microscope of fans who came from all over North America to try to get close to the filming and the cast. Similar fan attention dogged the second movie New Moon when it filmed in the city earlier in 2009.
Reed acknowledges that the fan attention made daily life complicated, but says the attention has helped to turn the Twilight movies into a global phenomenon.
“We’ve been to Vancouver for two movies, eight, nine months in total. Unfortunately I don’t get to experience Vancouver because we’re very isolated there.”
Lead actors Stewart, Rob Pattinson and Taylor Lautner had security with them while in Vancouver for the third movie, making them hard for fans to get close to, so that put more fan attention on Reed and the other supporting cast.
“It makes us closer,” she says. “We cook a lot, we spend a lot of time indoors together, we do a lot of exiting underground. It’s not a bad thing, it’s just challenging. It’s just a very unique experience we’re having.”
Reed had quit smoking a month before filming started — she’s been off cigarettes for a year now — and says her friends in the cast helped.
“I was spending a lot of time going to the gym and being physcially active in order to get my mind off it,” she says. “I hung out much more with Elizabeth Reaser this time because she’s very active, she inspires me. Taylor and I went jet-skiing, Kellan Lutz and I went to the gym. I was kind of with the jocks this time around.”
At work, another challenge to filming was Vancouver’s frequently changing weather. The story called for overcast skies, but rain sometimes forced them indoors.
“We were always kept close to the set because we had weather issues. We had to be prepared and ready to go at any given moment. We were all brought in every single day, put through hair and makeup and then we would wait our turn to see if they would need us.”
Reed was heading for Louisiana this weekend to start work on another movie, the action movie Catch .44 with Bruce Willis and Forest Whitaker. She plays one of three friends — Deborah Anne Woll ( True Blood) and Malin Akerman are the other two — who are lured into a crime spree by an intriguing stranger (WIllis).
“My character is kid of a badass, the whole movie is badass,” says Reed.
Meanwhile, the fourth Twilight book Breaking Dawn is to be made into two movies, filming this fall. Word is that production may move from Vancouver to Louisiana, but Reed says she knows nothing.
“They actually don’t tell us anything,” she says. “They tell us literally as we’re getting on airplanes where we’re going.”
Source: The Province