You recreated the cover of the book, of two hands cupping an apple, with Edward catching an apple in the cafeteria with his feet and it moving up his body into his hands. What was the process of getting that shot?
I just thought [it would be great to have] some little beautiful nods. Of course, I wanted Stephenie Meyer to be in the movie, and I thought our fans were going to kind of love that. She’s in the diner scene. And [I thought] wouldn’t it be neat to have that same visual from the book if we could figure out how to do it? We had the apple, and we kept trying [the sequence] and it was a pretty tight budget, we had a tight schedule. We usually only did, like, three or four takes and we just could not get the apple to work, and then on take seven, I was like, maybe this was a dumb idea, but let’s do take eight and let me try it one more time. Take 13 I think is where we got it.
And is it actually Robert Pattinson doing that trick?
It is. He really did just have to catch it.
There are a few super-speed running scenes, and one of the defining scenes of the film is when Edward tells Bella ”Hold on Tight, Spider Monkey” before grabbing her and sprinting her through the forest. How were those scenes shot on such a tight budget?
There’s really no special effects in the movie. There’s no CGI or anything, apart from the skin sparkling. There are two shots that are green screen, but the rest… it’s very minimal, it’s really more like Guillermo del Toro with in-camera stuff. We just sped up the film, so that was one technique. And then when the bad vampires come in the baseball scene, the stunt guy made what he called a magic carpet, which is a piece of plexiglass attached to a machine, so they could walk on it and it doubled their speed.
Speaking of the skin sparkling, what was the process of nailing the sparkles? Was it a Goldilocks situation of, like, not enough, too much and just right?
The tricky thing is, you first think, Okay, a grown man has to sparkle. Okay, that’s a little scary. I don’t want it to be jokey. I don’t want you to laugh. I want you to believe it, and it feel organic. We did try it with makeup, and that looked ridiculous. Just makeup that had some, you know, iridescent shimmer and stuff. In the book, he sparkles for a long time in the meadow, it’s like four or five pages he is in the sunshine, and I said, ‘Well, we can’t afford that, so let’s just reduce that time’. So the idea was that he would just step out into the beam of light, show her, say a couple of things and then get it out of there. Then we went to ILM, Industrial Light and Magic up in San Francisco that does Star Wars, and I worked with the artists there to get the right amount of sparkle.