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Haven’t seen the film myself, so can’t comment, but I have read both the book and the script of which Water for Elephants – the new film starring Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon – is based on, and can I just say, I think it’s a very solid, enjoyable yarn. I’m already predicting it might be one of my favorite films of the year – it’s story seems to encompass everything I require in a yarn.
The film – and source material – tells of a veterinary student, played by Pattinson, who abandons his studies after his parents are killed and joins a traveling circus as their vet.
Two different sources confirmed for me today that the film is undergoing reshoots this month.
One told me, “I’m being told that director Francis Lawrence has been asked to reshoot some of the movie – someone wants the film, which is a very stylistic almost jigsaw-puzzle of a film, to appeal to a broader audience than what it will in it’s current form (read : more commercial). That doesn’t mean it’s a poor film, in fact I could be a brilliant piece, it’s just a studio making sure they get the most bums on seats possible.”
Another, who has somewhat of a link to the production, says “It’s all good. The film is brilliant, man. Oscars 2012. Mark My Words. But yeah, what you’ve heard is true – we are doing new stuff. It’s all secondary character stuff”
The first scene to be reshot “involves a 9-month old baby (blue-eyed) who is going to playing with a small dog – a Jack Russell, I believe”, I was informed earlier today.
So… um, they’re adding cute stuff? or a pre-credits sequence? Young Robert Pattinson? Whatever the case, I’m fairly confident this is gonna be a must-watch flick.
Michelle Williams is on the cover of the latest issue of US Marie Claire, and in her interview she talks about some advice that Reese gave her, and how it affected her:
On Reese’s advice in a troubled time: “To give credit where credit is due, I was sharing a difficulty I was experiencing with Reese Witherspoon, and she said, ‘Yes, I understand, but think about how much more difficult this would be without the luxury of a reliable, steady income.”
On a changed perspective on life: “When things are difficult for me as a single parent, I always reflect on how much harder it would be if I didn’t have money—if I couldn’t afford a babysitter to go to yoga class or out to dinner with a girlfriend.”
For Robert Pattinson, it was the elephant that sealed the deal.
The Twilight star, 24, was on the fence about taking the role of Jacob, a veterinary student who joins a traveling circus in the upcoming Depression-era romantic drama Water for Elephants – until the actor met Tai, his 42-year-old, nearly 9000-lb. costar.
“Rob was non-committal until he saw the elephant,” recalls the film’s animal coordinator Paul ‘Sled’ Reynolds. “After he met Tai, he knew he wanted to do this movie. He absolutely adored that elephant.”
PEOPLE has a first look at some of the film’s rich images – and Pattinson’s near smooch with Tai.
The adaptation of Sara Gruen’s bestselling novel, which arrives in theaters on April 22, tells the story of a love triangle that develops between Jacob, Reese Witherspoon’s Marlena, who is the show’s bottle-blonde star performer, and her husband August, the circus’s abusive ringleader, played by Oscar-winning Inglourious Basterds star Christoph Waltz.
While it was important to the filmmakers that Pattinson bond with Tai, their chief concern was making sure sparks flew between him and Witherspoon, 34.
“I saw early on that those two had a real on-screen chemistry,” the film’s director Francis Lawrence (I Am Legend) tells PEOPLE. “There was just this thing that happens between the two of them when they are together as those two characters that was very exciting.”
A Sensitive Guy
Lawrence became convinced that Pattinson could pull off the challenging role of Jacob shortly after a meeting with the British heartthrob to discuss the part.
“When I sat down with Rob, I found that despite his success, there was a real sense of humility with him,” says Lawrence. “I found that he was kind of uncomfortable in his own skin, and maybe even uncomfortable with everything that was happening to him. Rob is a very sensitive guy who very much loves animals.”
Adds Lawrence, “I found that, wow, this guy kind of already is Jacob.”
For more about Water for Elephants and exclusive pictures from the movie, pick up this week’s PEOPLE magazine
Twentieth Century Fox is taking advantage of a sudden opening on the 2011 Easter calendar, pushing back the release of its animated 3D film Rio from April 5 to April 15, and Water For Elephants from April 15 to April 22.
The shifts were prompted after Warner Bros. moved Steve Carell’s Crazy, Stupid, Love from April 22 to July 29.
Easter Sunday falls on April 24 in 2011.
Rio and Water for Elephants, toplining Reese Witherspoon, Robert Pattinson and Christoph Waltz, are now positioned closer to the holiday.