On the Breaking Dawn Set: A Glimpse of Life as an Extra

Many people talk about how they would have wanted to be on the set of Breaking Dawn. Here are the glamorous and not so glamorous details for a movie extra.

Working on any movie is a lot like camping, but being an extra in Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, with its secret remote location and total ban on electronic devices, made us feel like inmates in a prison camp.

As guests at the biggest vampire wedding in film history, we were bussed from West Vancouver to Squamish and offloaded at the base camp, or “circus,” which snaked down an easement in the forest. After wardrobe, hair and makeup, we passed through “checkpoint charlie” metal detectors, then rode in vans to the extras “holding” tents where we sat for hours eating junk food.

On a couple of nights, one of the producers came to warn us about their security team, including frogmen on the river, to prevent anyone from photographing the set. We must not inform anyone of the set’s location and must report any coercion, he said. And no speaking to the actors, no matter what. We were among the “fortunate few” to be chosen, he reminded us, but our participation depends on our compliance with security. Have a nice evening.

You won’t see me in that night’s scene, where the happy couple exit the reception, since I was practically standing in the forest. Nor was I visible in the next day’s wedding ceremony, when I was placed so far from the aisle as to need binoculars.

We sat in the wedding set for two days, on logs that seemed to grow into benches under a canopy of wisteria. A quick shot to rise and turn toward to the bride, then more waiting and shivering. And was that thunder or an avalanche in the distance?

See more on the Vancouver Sun


  1. love robert pattinson
    like you just in nice good
    amanda bratch

  2. Sounds glamorous hu? I read the hole article and poor poor Extras

  3. Geez, I hope she read the fine print on her NDA before writing this.

    Regardless though, as someone who’s worked as an extra on some stuff, I find myself a bit disgusted with this person. It’s like an unspoken rule (or heck, maybe it’s in the NDA, too–that just makes what she did doubly worse), that you don’t talk about what you’ve seen of the actors’ relationships, ‘herbal preferences’ etc, to people not involved in the production. Actors should be able to do their jobs without worrying that someone’s going to blog later about the amount of cigarettes they smoked or who they hugged/snuggled/kissed/whatever.

    • Twilight_News says:

      Well if she did have an NDA that applied after the film’s release ( a lot of them don’t apply after film’s release) she’s in hot water because she certainly made no bones about what set was like and exactly who she is.

  4. Glamorous or not, I’d still have traded places with this girl in a heartbeat. And been a lot less snippy about it afterward, too!

    • Fiona Cullen says:

      I agree. You’d think she would know what she was getting herself in to, and the article she wrote just sounded a lot of unnecessary complaining. Good or bad it was the experience of a lifetime and I would have embraced it if it was me, not whinge about it.

      • I think she was just looking for any reason to complain, to be honest. From her bio and the last paragraph of the article, it’s obvious she’s been an extra in other stuff and knows (or should know) the drill. I truly doubt that she’s so delusional that she’d think the actors/actresses would just come up and talk to her and that she’d receive screen time. Heck, Pattinson didn’t even get screen time in ‘Vanity Fair’ and he actually acted in it.

        I get the feeling that this is some more veiled hating on the series, TBH.

  5. She makes it sound as if the actors are being intentionally snobbish by shielding themselves from other actors and extras, but we’ve heard so many stories about their generosity towards fans…that I think it more likely the director and staff want them shielded from distractions so they can stay in the character during all the stops and starts of filming scenes over and over again. If extras walked up to them all the time, it would be hard to get anything done or to get their best performance.

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