Where have I been? I ask myself this question every day, recently. At the risk of sounding unnecessarily dramatic, I have been involved in the longest, most challenging, scariest project I have ever undertaken. I have sacrificed and sweated and agonized - for good reason. Most of the folks involved are above my pay grade. And it's been a secret. Soon, I will return to "TwiMadness' with a vengeance…for now, just another blog post about my nutty Twilight experiences.
I get asked 3 questions all the time. Hard as it may be to believe, I have a few anecdotes in reply:
What's it like working with Stephenie Meyer?
Stephenie's success is just staggering and I am pretty sure many would and probably did feel intimidated around her. Here's the secret about Stephenie that I accidentally discovered, though…she is normal. REALLY normal. And funny. But mostly normal…like the kind of person you'd hang out with. Just to shoot the shit.
At first, I was pretty shy…for me. And nervous - I met Stephenie AFTER I'd been cast when some of us were called down to Baton Rouge for a make-up/wardrobe test before shooting began. So, I didn't know how she felt about me or my choices for Stefan. I mean, I know if she would have HATED my audition tape, I wouldn't be there but you know, maybe she was just like "Eh…Guri…whatever…thank GOD we also got better actors…"
When I finally met her in Baton Rouge, I was already in costume and make-up. I shook her hand and she said, "You are EXACTLY how I pictured Stefan" and smiled. And I relaxed. Like a baby, actually. In fact, I wet my pants…not really. Okay, a little.
So, from that point on, we just clicked. We chatted a lot and some folks that hadn't quite figured out the 'normal' part about her were speculating as to what she had to say and if there was any 'Twilight' secrets she shared. I actually had some folks come up to me asking, "What do you talk about?" So, as a public service, I would like to disclose one of our 'top secret' conversations now. I think the one that sums it up best is this story :
On set, there were different 'video villages' which are areas with monitors displaying different camera angles and chairs huddled around. It was a bit tense on set as we were behind schedule. However, I'm just an actor in a VERY silly mood and so I go find Stephenie…'cause her village was down like that.
"Guuuuurrrrriiiiii….how are ya?"
"What's wrong?", she asks, all sincerely.
"Where are the Jewish vampires, Stephenie? Not ONE Jewish vampire?!?"
She laughs. "Because it goes against everything Judaism is about, GURI."
"I don't think you're seeing it. See, if there were some Jews in the vamp camp, we could sidestep all battles in favor of negotiation…plus, I think the vamp world needs a good kosher deli…"
Now, I notice Lily Collins there. She's laughing at my stupid Jewish vampire joke, so I immediately like her. And to the fans that are trying to stir up competition between the two Snow White movies, IMHO, they are VERY different films, they BOTH look great and I am a fan of BOTH actresses.
Back to the day. So, Stephenie is telling me about 'The Hunger Games' and what a great book that is and then we discuss the sacrifices we will all be making that night, as shooting is going to go LATE. I mention that I am VERY distressed that I will be missing my new favorite show, 'The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills'. My wife's agitated and colorful commentary after each episode is just nothing short of priceless. But, that night, alas…no RHOBH. Stephenie doesn't even know the show and I'm aghast. Lily is also aghast. I look at Lily, who I now see is an incredibly astute young woman with FINE taste in reality television and we high five. We then describe the show to Stephenie by acting it out. She seems unimpressed by the show yet oddly adamant that we keep discussing our viewpoints about it with her. Oh! Right - and then Stephenie makes fun of me AD NAUSEUM for watching it. Not Lily, she got off scott-free for her allegiance to RHOBH. Just me. Whatever.
So, now everyone knows. Jewish vampires and the The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills are excellent examples of the scintillating, exclusive topics Stephenie and I discussed.
guriweinberg to read the rest (and it is funny in true Guri style)