“I take offense, in a way, on Rob’s behalf at the interest in his ability as an actor,’’ said Waltz, who won an Oscar last year for his brilliantly creepy portrayal of Nazi Hans Landa in Quentin Tarantino’s “Inglourious Basterds.’’ “He’s an actor. He’s a grown-up. He is not some silly kid. Why does everybody expect something else? It’s unfair.’’
So Lawrence, who directed Will Smith in the 2007 apocalyptic thriller, “I Am Legend,’’ sat down with Pattinson to kick around ideas about the “Elephants’’ role and get to know him a little. Lawrence came away impressed. Then the director got him in front of a camera and came away, in a word, stunned.
“I thought he was right once I met with him for the role,’’ Lawrence recalls. “But then you suddenly see him onscreen that first day, and you kind of realize, holy [expletive], I think we’ve really found something here that’s pretty amazing.’’
“I like to think that I have quite good taste in movies, and I want to make the kind of movies that I’d like to see,’’ says the actor, who has previously named “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,’’ “The Exorcist,’’ and Godard’s “Prenom Carmen’’ among his favorites. “Water for Elephants’’ “is definitely in a direction of things I want to make,’’ he says. “I think it fills a need. I haven’t seen something like it for a while in the cinema, just the level of detail that people put into it, and artistry.’’
As evidence, he launches into stories about legendary production designer Jack Fisk, best known for his work with Terrence Malick; costume designer Jacqueline West; and the joy of working on a set that felt as if it had been created in the 1930s.
“I really felt like it was only about making a movie with this film, which was one of the big reliefs,’’ Pattinson says. “There’s going to be no sequels. And you just get people who are the best at their jobs and you tell them, ‘I just want you to do your best work in a creative way.’ ’’
More after the break! Minding the juggernaut That, of course, is not always the way it works on a franchise, especially a multi-billion-dollar juggernaut such as “The Twilight Saga.’’ Department after department has a say, and a vested interest, in how “Breaking Dawn,’’ the two-part finale of the series, looks and feels when it finally hits theaters — the first part this November, the second part next year.
Pattinson is both frustrated by and fiercely protective of the franchise that has made him a superstar. On the one hand, he grouses that after doing three of the films, “you’d think you’d get more power as an actor, but you get less and less and less.’’ On the other, he is obviously excited by the work he has done on “Breaking Dawn,’’ which is being helmed by Bill Condon.Which is why today, amid the reporters and the film crews and the cold coffee, Pattinson is furious. Just a couple of days earlier, top-secret pictures from the “Breaking Dawn’’ film set had been leaked online. At this point, these movies are like his children. His costars, like family. For someone to hack in and spoil the surprise, to ruin it for the multitude of fans out there, well, Pattinson won’t have it.
“I’ve been sending out messages to all the good ‘Twilight’ fans to find out who [the hackers] are and kill them,’’ he says. He is joking mostly. But not completely. Pattinson’s got a lot riding on all these movies. He knows this time in the spotlight is precious. Because sooner or later, the circus packs up and moves on.
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