I have previously enjoyed Nicholas Spark's previous movie adaptations so I was excited to see Safe Haven. Who doesn't like a good romance, right? I hadn't read the book before seeing the movie so I assumed it was similar to the other Spark's movies. Much to my pleasant surprise, it was more than a romance it was a romance and a thriller all in one. A perfect combination, in my humble opinion.
Me and my friend, as well as most of the theatre, jumped out of our seat at several parts. The casting was phenomenal from the amazing chemistry between Josh and Julianne to the super scary performance of David Lyons (Revolution). Personally I enjoyed the twist at the end (you have to see it for your self) and didn't see it coming! And I really loved the relationship between Julianne's character, Kate, and Josh's daughter in the movie, Lexi. Plus the actress who played Lexi, Mimi Kirkland, really made you laugh and cry.
L to R: Nicholas Sparks, me, Josh Duhamel, Julianne Hough
The next day I was invited to meet and interview Josh Duhamel, Julianne Hough and Nicholas Sparks during their press junket in the Twin Cities. I was joined by four other local bloggers and we all got to ask the trio about the movie, acting and a tiny but of personal stuff.
I asked two questions and the others got to ask either one or two additional questions each. Here are just some of the questions we got to ask:
"How do you dig deeper into a character, How do you go beyond what Nicholas wrote in the page?"
Julianne: I went and visited some female shelters and some therapists I actually know and personal experiences and friends experiences, people that I talk to.
Josh: For me, I wanted to get inside of the head of a guy trying to raise two kids on his own and what it's like to loose a loved one and having to raise kids. I spoke to my therapist and couple of other people who have dealt with stuff like this. A friend of mine....I actually was apprehensive to ask him to come [to the screening] because his wife just died of cancer like a month and a half ago and he has two twin boys and he is going through what this character was and I just talked to him, how are you? How are you dealing with all of this and all that stuff is important to me because for the kids, I wanted to have a real specific relationship with them because to me my relationship with the kids are just as important as my relationship with her [Kate]. And I had 2 weeks before the shooting just sitting on the beach in North Carolina writing, reading and boogie boarding just thinking about it and absorbing this little town that we were in and getting to really live this character before we even started shooting it.
"How is being in movies and entertainment, in the industry, changed from your original expectations from before you got in?
Josh: It's not nearly as glamorous as it seems. It is a lot harder work than I think people realize. You know, the movie making and everything is nothing. It's this, it's the interviews. That was a joke. It's not as glamorous as it seems, but at the same time there is something, you know, I always wanted a kind of outlet - creatively because that was the only thing I was ever good at, whether it was writing, or drawing, or anything art related. If it involved crunching numbers, I couldn't do it. But, I never knew what this would bring and I think you have expectations, you dream about what it will be. Nobody leaves this business without being very humbled and I've had a lot of humbling experiences in this business too. It's easy to fall into certain traps and you learn as you go that at the end of the day it's just about, its literally the reason I love it is because I get to be creative. Other than that, my life hasn't really changed that much. After coming full circle, you first think it's going to be premieres but at the end of the day you its like you said, you just literally find someone you love and do what anyone else does and live a regular life. I just love doing it. Does that make sense?...
Julianne: I don't know. The one thing that I've just always wanted to be is an entertainer in general, be an actress, a dancer, a singer. And You think it is glamorous, you think you go to the parties and the premieres and everything. I remember somebody telling me you are going , you will get to that point where it noe becomes work and I was like, "that's not true, this is incredible." And its true and now it's like, I love doing the actual creative process, but sometimes the life that comes with it does become work and you just want to go home and play with your dogs and cook and do those things. So, having to be constantly on and happy, like everybody has a rough day. That's a little different. But, not to say that I don't love being on and being around people, I do love that, I do love that. Its now to everybody's not mysterious in the entertainment world, every body's so accessible, its almost like to keep up you gotta be accessible and there is alot more that comes with that. That's more of a serious side, but I do love what I do and it's so worth everything.
Josh: I wonder if there's too much accessibility with all the Twitter and stuff? I'm constantly going back and forth. Like because I have a Twitter account. You wonder...
Julianne: If you take it out though, you're not keeping up.
Josh: There's a fine line between staying in the game and becoming overly accessible and becaue part of what - people aren't going to be hungry for it if they get everything they want. So you have to maintain some air of mystery but you still have to be accessible
"Julianne, towards the end, those sceens were very scary. Was that hard to play? How did you prep for that?"
Julianne: I don't want to say that it wasn't hard to play, but it was really fun because I'm a very active, athletic person so to do these fight scenes was so much fun for me. It's like choreography for dancing. You have your certain routine, your fight routine, plus David is probably like on of my closest and best friends now because of the movie so there was a safety there with him. We'd be laughing at like hysterically between takes and get it going again. Yea, so I enjoyed it. But then in it, the athleticism part I enjoyed but being in it, it's a hard thing to experience and go through. I very fortunate that I liked the guy and he liked me. We also had a great director -where you could be vulnerable and not exposed. It was good. yeah
"Are you as romantic in real life as you are in the books that you write?"
Nicholas: Yes, sure, try to be. My wife likes romantic things. "Happy wife, happy life", those rules. You do those things.
Safe Haven opens in theatres on Valentines Day!
**DISCLOSURE: This post is not sponsored. All opinions expressed in this post of the movie are my own and the interview was transcribed by myself based on the questions asked and answers given.**