Movieline: David Slade, “I Don’t Know Why Anyone Would Hire Me”

David SladesetWell, regardless of David knowing why he was chosen or not. The end result seems to be being given a thumbs up by fans far more so than the previous two films.

“How do you approach something like the proposal scene, which could so easily be the cheesiest thing ever? Do you try to underplay it?
I really tried to keep the actors in the moment and not be premeditated about things. We had a policy of not changing lines unless specific issues came up, in which case we’d discuss it well in advance. I also had a one-on-one actor rehearsal policy, where I would meet every actor individually to discuss scenes and talk about their characters so that by the time we got to the full rehearsal with all the actors, we had just the content of the scene [to concentrate on]. We’d answered all the questions, so we could deal with the meat and potatoes of getting the scene right. I think the actors appreciated that time we spent with them. When it came down to it, one of my goals was to make things realistic and believable without leaning on the fantastical elements at all, but trying actually to be antithetical to that. I wanted the fantastic elements to be as believable as possible.

I know Kristen Stewart knocks herself out to be believable in her performances.
One of the things she said to me early on was, “If I don’t believe in it, I can’t do it. I’m a terrible liar, and if I don’t believe the words I say, then I can’t go through with saying them.” Sometimes it was tricky, massaging some of the line readings, but it was always in the process of getting it down. Kristen can be an exceptionally naturalistic actress in that way, but that’s really what I was looking for. We knew that this was the most mature of the books in how the story was told. It’s the conclusion of the love triangle, and a lot of the the themes in the first two books conclude in this book. We knew it would be a more adult and cinematic film, and we wanted to treat the drama as drama. There’s comedy, but the comedy is intentional.”

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  1. seriously i thiink he was the worst dirctor ever. he rushed the whole movie. and put inn new scenes that were never in the book.

    • The “new” scenes were from The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner. Stephanie gave the book to the MR so she could include the backstory that Bella doesn’t know about in the movie…it gives us a more complete version of the story.

  2. Sorry you didn’t like the movie too much Erin but you must understand that the director directs the screen play that the screen writter wrote. He doesn’t get to put in extra sceens. Also, it’s really difficult to fit a almost 700 page book into a 2 hour movie. Thank goodness Breaking Dawn will be split into two films, then there will be more of the books details in the film.

    • yes rocio i do understand that some parts in movies can’t make it through the movie but they just made it seem like the director just didn’t care

  3. i waited 16 hours to get into a midnight showing and i left the movie very unhappy.

    the scripted was just plan and simple which i would choose the word really bad. and the dircting of the movie was even more awful. david slade did nothing but ruined most of the moive.

    i was very much looking forward for the ending where edward in the book tries to seduce bella where in the movie he did not such thing. he siad the line but in a different setting.

    and especially the beinning in the book their was never a killing from victoria or so very obvious of edward and bella in the meadow talking about marrage.

    seriously this movie took so many turns and went so many different dirctions that now i have been home 6 hours and i can’t sleep because i am just too upset.

    the few parts that did well were the tent scene which did make me happy and the quick love scene/proposal between edward and bella. but even that small love scene in edwards bedroom was bad because the way david slade directed it he made that scene out of focus, you could not really see anything.

    • I know everyone has their own opinion, but I think you are WAY off about the director not caring. Slade became very passionate about this film and it showed on the big screen. And you have to remember that there is no way the EXACT book can be on screen. There needs to be some changes made to make it visually appealing and to flow well. Which, I thought Eclipse did very well.

      You also need to remember that the book is from Bella’s POV, so she wouldn’t have seen Riley get turned by Victoria. That’s the cool thing about movies is you can show other POV’s that you don’t get with the book.

      And I don’t understand how you can be unhappy with the leg hitch/proposal scene. It was HOT and sweet, and romantic. Everyone clapped in my theater when Bella said, “Yes.”

      I feel really bad for you that you feel so unhappy about not liking the movie, because it was great. Maybe you should see it again and you will change your mind.

      Bravo David Slade! Eclipse was awesome!!!!

  4. purlgurl says:

    I was very happy with the movie – definitely stronger than “New Moon”, IMO. I’m sure that this will be controversial, but I really like that they made Bella’s action during the fight (stabbing into her arm with the rock) actually *mean* something – the condescension in the book from Edward and Seth always bothered me (*pat on the head Bella* “Just you wait ’til I’m a vampire!”). I definitely think that “Movie Bella” is a stronger person, and demonstrates a lot more agency, than “Book Bella”. I didn’t even mind the “I am Woman, Hear Me Roar” speech that was added in at the end, and I was a bit worried about that part. I also noticed that Kristen is subtly starting to play Bella as more adult – I think that the transition to her various life roles in Breaking Dawn will be more believable because of Kristen’s portrayal (and I give David Slade credit for, I’m sure, helping to shape that performance).

    I didn’t think Taylor did a fantastic job – I liked his performance in “Twilight” best – my impression is that he’s becoming more and more self-conscious. In the first movie, I thought he was wonderfully natural. I loved that Rob-as-Edward was actually allowed to smile. And the jumping up and hugging in the proposal scene reminded me of the night that I got engaged. 🙂 Also, Bella and Edward’s kisses were much hotter than Jacob and Bella’s kiss.

    Did not enjoy Bryce as Victoria – sorry, Ron Howard’s daughter. She just didn’t strike me as menacing *at all* – Rachelle did a much better job being scary.

    I am looking forward to seeing this again! The reaction at my midnight showing was really fun – applause when B&E got engaged (and laughter when someone yelled out “Do it!” while they were on the bed). And my husband didn’t mind the first movie, but hated “New Moon” – I have a feeling that this one is probably going to go over okay with him.

    Thanks, David Slade!

  5. CallMeNina says:

    I was disappointed in the dialogue. I felt the actors gave it their best but the script was a little too rushed. The dialogue choppy. It’s my favorite book, so I knew I would be picking it apart. I was satisfied with the tent scene. Melissa didn’t butcher it, thank goodness. I went into this film with a very open mind about Bryce as Victoria but she just didn’t cut it for me. Sorry. Riley, however, nailed it. Drool factor aside, Xavier was a nice surprise. I liked the spin on him being from Forks.

  6. purlgurl-were u at veteran’s 24 in tampa? My audience did the same reactions. I liked the film. I think David Slade did a great job. It was a little rushed- but u gotta remember Melissa Rosenberg did write the screenplay. I thought Bryce was ok- she did come through being nasty in the end with her & Edward’s fight(that was great)Seth was great too-can’t wait till BD with him & Leah.Wish everyone had a bigger part & scenes were longer, but at least the Cullens got more screentime.Will be seeing Eclipse again & again!!!! All the actors did a fantastic job!!

    • Lylabean says:

      I thought that all in all the movie was fantastic, better than both Twilight and New Moon and it does a fantastic job of setting up Breaking Dawn. We do have to keep in mind that Eclipse was a very long book as well and it’s not always easy to fit all of that dialog into a 2 hour movie. I think that the acting was much better this time around and do agree that Bryce didn’t seem very menacing, but she still carried the role of Victoria well. I loved the movie and am already planning to purchase tickets for another showing today!

    • purlgurl says:

      Pam – Nope, at the Varsity in Toronto, Ontario. I bet that ours were not the only audiences with these reactions. 🙂

  7. Luthien says:

    I think this is the best of the three films so far. I didn’t expect this from David Slade, and was pleasantly surprised. I think the story hit all the major scenes I was looking forward to from the books, which is great! Also, included were some bits that were only told in Bree’s story. That was nice!

    I didn’t care for Bryce as Victoria in this. She wasn’t menacing enough, I thought. Well, at least she won’t be around anymore anyways. I too thought the film felt rushed. Maybe it was the editing, and I know there was a lot of story to fit into two hours, but it still felt a bit hurried. I know people who weren’t familiar with the story (and at the showing I went to, there were a few) were completely lost. Not good, since they won’t be coming back for the last film now either.

    I felt that both Kristen and Rob were very one dimensional in this one; I liked their performances better in New Moon. At least I never noticed this before this film. I particularly liked the little scene between Bella and her mom, and the chase by both the vamps and the wolves when Victoria was roaming the woods. Nicely done, that. The Newborn fight scene at the end as good! All in all, good job, David Slade! Thanks!

  8. IMO I think Eclipse is the best out of the three films. BDH was not as bad as I had originally thought she was going to be. I, personally, thought they stayed pretty close to the book.

    People have to understand that they have to change things and/or add things to make the viewer understand certain charactor’s feelings or flaws. Take for instance when Edward got all pissy at Jacob for kissing Bella. We understand that Edward was furious in the book because he told Jacob that he won’t kill him now, so they had to protray Edward with anger to help the viewer to understand.
    Also with the scene with Bella and her mom. They had to write it different to show how close Bella is to her and how much Bella loves her mom. For us fans of the book, we already know that.

    As for the film being rushed, it was. They had to fit 700 pages in two hours, so there you go. I, personally believe that Kristen, Rob, Taylor, and everyone else stepped up in their acting. It was so nice to see Bella actually show some emotion this time. Edward really seemed like Edward (finally).

    The only negative thing I have to say is that I wished that they would have put in the part where Bella cried her eyes out for Jacob as she did in the book Eclipse. Also the part in Wurthering Heights about the universe (you get the idea. I’m on three hours of sleep). In that speach we understand how much Bella loves Edward and how much she needs him.

    Good Job David Slade and Melissa Rosenberg.

  9. I agree with the title of this post: I don’t know why anyone would hire him either. Eclipse was SO much worse than New Moon. They had the same crew from the last film, so it couldn’t have been their fault. I blame David Slade.

  10. Amanda Dubs says:

    I went to the premiere with a huge group of friends and NO one left the theatre unhappy. Sorry about you peoples experience though.

  11. This movie sucked. The entire theater (Chelsea NY) laughed in places that weren’t supposed to be funny at all. Bad sign. I cracked up in all sorts of places.

    The Homicide Life On the Street-style shaky cam was distracting and did nothing to add to the tension. I thought I was watching some friggin’ prime time cops television show. Where’s Richard Belzer?

    Also, what was up with the Bella-bot? The character had little feeling, a total empty vessel, while the boys went at it throughout the film over this Bella-bot. Taylor Lautner? A clenched jaw doesn’t equate serious acting. Poor guy.

    And the end, what a drag. So basically the girl chooses Edward just because she wants to live a life of vampire? Lucky guy, right? She comes off as a total bitch throughout the whole film, Taylor Lautner comes off as a brat, and Edward, a total whipped pussy who has to deal with the ‘bot’s torturous games. If you want to live an entire eternity with that, be my guest. The problem: You have to make us like the characters. And the director betrayed them all.

    Everyone comes off as vapid. I think this thing needed a woman’s touch. Guy directors just don’t get what’s behind this. Summit’s so desperate to make this into an action film to draw dudes…it’s sick.

    (At least the Chelsea boys enjoyed the scenes with Taylor and his shirt off.)

    And David Slade: Hard Candy was retarded. Dealing with taboo material with a twist doesn’t make for a good movie. And 30 Days of Night… that’s for carrying the shaky cam grayness over. Ugh. Both films were soulless.

    When is Summit going to get this?

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