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Tag: Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes) (1-10 of 16)

Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): How the music in 'Pitch Perfect' became aca-awesome

This fall, the music of Pitch Perfect joined a crowded field of soundtracks that cover well-loved songs, but even with shows like Glee, Smash, American Idol and The Voice hitting the scene well before it, the movie that put the spotlight on collegiate a cappella made its mark. EW talked to director Jason Moore and music supervisors Julianne Jordan and Julia Michels about getting together the music for the film about an all-girls a cappella group determined to achieve national music competition glory. For more stories behind this year’s top TV and movie moments, click here for EW.com’s Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes) coverage.

Song selection

Jordan and Michels had a major challenge ahead of them when they signed on to Pitch Perfect: working with a script in which the songs were all placeholders and not a sure deal, they had to choose and secure rights to what ended up being about 40 songs for the film. Michels calls the endeavor “a very big, tedious and fun process.” The requirements for each song: “It had to work right in the scene and tell the story, it had to translate to the actors on-camera, and it had to sound good a cappella,” she says. READ FULL STORY

Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): 'The Impossible' wave whisperer explains breathtaking tsunami sequence

Translating the raw power of 2004′s cataclysmic Thailand tsunami to film would be an immense feat under any circumstance. But the task was all the more challenging for Félix Bergés, the visual effects supervisor of The Impossible (out in limited release on Dec. 21), who opted to skip the CGI in favor of real — read: unpredictable — water. After more than a year of testing and planning, Bergés and his team had precisely “one and a half takes” to pull off the film’s most pivotal set piece. Below, he explains the process behind the stunning, 10-minute sequence.

For more stories behind this year’s top TV and movie moments, click here for EW.com’s Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes) coverage.

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Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): 'The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel' director John Madden on filming in India

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, directed by John Madden, dunks seven veteran British actors — Judi Dench, Tom Wilkinson, Bill Nighy, Penelope Wilton, Maggie Smith, Ronald Pickup, and Celia Imrie — into the hot, steamy inner sanctum of India, playing retirees who take up residence at an old hotel more dilapidated than originally advertised. Madden tells EW about the experience filming in and outside the Indian cities of Jaipur and Udaipur, from the heat on set to the difficulty of getting sound and the right shots as crowds flocked around the cast and crew.

For more stories behind this year’s top TV and movie moments, click here for EW.com’s Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes) coverageREAD FULL STORY

Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): How Pittsburgh landed 'The Dark Knight Rises'

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Move over, Wilmington. Pittsburgh has declared itself the new Hollywood of the East. Although people have been making movies in the Steel City practically since the video camera was invented, the city’s film industry really took off when Pennsylvania introduced a tax credit program for filmmakers about 10 years ago. Since then, Pittsburgh has seen a steady increase of film work — culminating this year, when five major studio movies shot in southwestern PA hit theaters, including The Dark Knight Rises and The Perks of Being a Wallflower. A murder story starring Steve Carell and Channing Tatum, a new TV show starring Chloe Sevigny, and Fisher Stevens’s adaptation of American Pastoral are currently being shot there. All told, the film industry has brought more than $100 million in revenue to Pittsburgh and the surrounding area for the last three years in a row. EW spoke with Dawn Keezer, director of the Pittsburgh Film Office, to learn how the town Sienna Miller once called “Sh–sburgh” reinvented itself as a movie mecca.

For more stories behind this year’s top TV and movie moments, click here for EW.com’s Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes) coverageREAD FULL STORY

Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): Making James Bond's slinky opening credits for 'Skyfall'

Music video and advertising director Daniel Kleinman has been creating the complex and abstract opening credit sequences for the James Bond movies since 1995′s GoldenEye. He sat out the titles for 2008′s Quantum of Solace, but he’s not surprised to be returning for his sixth go ’round crafting the slinky, smoky credits for this year’s Skyfall, with Adele’s hit title song as his soundtrack.

“The way it’s set up by the producers, Barbara Broccoli and Michael Wilson, it’s quite a family affair,” he says. “A lot of the same people get asked back onto the films on a regular basis. It makes it a nice project to do.” That loyalty cuts both ways: Kleinman’s credit sequence services are pretty much exclusive to the Bond franchise. “I’m not really a title sequence director per se,” he says. “I do it for James Bond because I was a fan when I was a kid, and I was always very taken with the Bond credits when I was at art school. Also, it’s James Bond. If one’s going to do any title or credit sequence at all, James Bond is the one to do.”

Here’s how he makes it happen. For more stories behind this year’s top TV and movie moments, click here for EW.com’s Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes) coverage. READ FULL STORY

Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): Inside Joe Manganiello's five favorite 'Magic Mike' press tour moments

After the stripping numbers (which EW thoroughly dissected with the choreographer, costume designer, and music supervisor when the movie hit theaters last summer), what people probably remember most about Magic Mike is costar Joe Manganiello’s gloriously game, body roll-filled press tour. “There were a lot of moments where I was backstage right after whatever went down lookin’ at my publicist, Lisa [Perkins], like, I’m a classically-trained actor. What the f— am I doing? What are we doing? Please tell me I’m not insane and out of my mind. And Lisa would look at me and just go, ‘You are insane. You are out of your mind. But it’s working,’” Manganiello recalls, laughing. “It was one of those things where I’m either gonna look like the biggest a—hole that’s ever lived, or this is gonna be huge. There’s something magical that’s gonna happen, or I’m never gonna be allowed out of the house again. Thank god it went the way that we hoped.” Here, Manganiello takes us inside his highlights.

For more stories behind this year’s top TV and movie moments, click here for EW.com’s Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes) coverageREAD FULL STORY

Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): 'Twilight Saga' screenwriter explains that twist ending

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Twilight Saga scribe Melissa Rosenberg should consider dabbling in espionage. For years, she’s kept a giant secret: how she and Twilight author Stephenie Meyer decided that the series’ final film adaptation would conclude with a thrilling, violent battle scene that — spoiler alert! – ends up being nothing but a vision of a possible future. “It hasn’t been a hard secret to keep, though, because no one suspects it’s going to be any different,” Rosenberg says, pointing out that the scene doesn’t really diverge from Breaking Dawn, the novel: “Fans get the book, but they get a little detour on the way.” Of course, there’s a little more to it than that. Here’s the tale of Breaking Dawn — Part 2‘s shocking battle scene, from conception to screen.

For more stories behind this year’s top moments, click here for TV and here for movies.

As told by: Melissa Rosenberg

We were filming Eclipse up in Vancouver, and Stephenie and I were having dinner at a steakhouse. At the time, she was debating whether she even wanted to make the fourth book into a movie, and I was debating whether I wanted to continue on with the series. Stephenie knew the book ended with this really tense conversation, and she knew that that wasn’t cinematic. We started talking about the ending, and I don’t know who had the idea [to do the battle scene] first — neither one of us can remember exactly. It felt simultaneous. We just went back and forth and were like, “That’s it! That’s gonna work!” READ FULL STORY

Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): How the 'Amazing Spider-Man' team made Spidey's swing look so real

Some of the coolest parts of The Amazing Spider-Man are the dizzying shots of Spidey rocketing through the air as he swings around the city. If those scenes seem a little more realistic than in previous movies about the web slinger, there’s a reason. Here, in a piece by originally published when the film opened in July, stunt coordinator Andy Armstrong explains how they reworked Spider-Man’s swing for the new film. For more stories behind this year’s top TV and movie moments, click here for EW.com’s Best of 2012: Behind the Scenes coverage.

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Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): How 'Life of Pi' was saved

Life of Pi was as good as dead.

The film adaptation of Yann Martel’s 2001 novel, about a young boy stranded at sea with a ferocious Bengal tiger, had been on the shelf for a long time. 20th Century Fox had already approached three directors, who tried and failed to get an adaptation onscreen before bowing out.

The last best hope was Ang Lee, but while the Brokeback Mountain and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon director spent eight months developing the project, it was the executives at Fox who began to have second thoughts.

This would not be a cheap movie — the budget was estimated around $120 million, and when the studio took a hard look at the project, they realized they had no idea what they were getting in to.

That’s when Elizabeth Gabler, President of Fox 2000 Pictures, called Lee to tell him that it was off. Fox was backing out, and he was welcome to shop the project elsewhere.

It wasn’t the last time he would have to fight for Life of Pi. Here, in an article originally published as the Oscar contender hit theaters, is how he brought this epic tale of survival back to life, over, and over again.

For more stories behind this year’s top TV and movie moments, click here for EW.com’s Best of 2012: Behind the Scenes coverage.

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Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): The story of the after-credits shawarma scene in 'The Avengers'

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At an April 12 press conference, two days after the Hollywood premiere of The Avengers, Robert Downey Jr. let slip that the stars of the film were reuniting that very night to shoot one last bit of footage for the movie. Here, in an excerpt from a piece originally published the day the movie opened, we share the origin of the now infamous shawarma scene. For more stories behind this year’s top TV and movie moments, click here for EW.com’s Best of 2012: Behind the Scenes coverage.

So, if you’ve seen the movie, you know that in the climactic New York battle against the alien invaders Iron Man does something selfless and noble and nearly loses his life for it. As he tumbles back to Earth, he is rescued mid-plummet by the Hulk, who breaks the fall by surfing down the side of some buildings and deposits Iron Man’s limp form on the pulverized street below.

EW, coincidentally, was on the New Mexico set of the movie during filming of this scene, in which Chris Hemsworth’s Thor and Chris Evans’ Captain America rush over and Thor rips off Iron Man’s mask to reveal an unconscious Tony Stark.

In the original script (SPOILER ALERT — and, do I really need to keep saying that at this point?) the billionaire awakens with a start and asks, ”What’s next?”

But during filming, Downey is notorious for pushing for variations and felt that line could be something snappier. Whedon agreed, and penned several new versions of the scene in a notebook the day of shooting. ”Peek behind the curtain,” Whedon told EW, showing us the scribbles. ”It was one line — now it’s three pages.”

Those new lines were the seed that led to the last-minute scene, though no one knew that at the time — not even Whedon. Otherwise, he surely would have shot the post-credits sequence before his cast scattered and had to be reunited by the movie’s premiere.

What was in those pages? “Please tell me nobody tried to kiss me,” Stark says, looking up at a looming Thor and Cap. That line made the finished movie, but others didn’t. There were several other variations in which Stark congratulates his fellow Avengers on winning the battle, and then — realizing it’s not over yet — wearily begins making suggestions about how much time off they’re going to be owed.

The line that made the final cut was a slightly more random one: Stark learns that there is more fighting left to do, and says fine, as long as the others agree to hit a good shawarma restaurant he knows in the neighborhood. (I guess after spending all that time in the Middle East, Stark developed a taste for Arab slow-roasted meats.)

We’re not doing justice to the jokes here, but Stark’s other cracks seemed to be a little funnier than the shawarma one, which seemed a little obscure. Of course, that changes dramatically if you pay it off with a scene of Captain America, Thor, Iron Man, Black Widow, Hawkeye, and the re-humanized Hulk all grabbing an after-work bite at said restaurant.

And that, dear readers, is what Whedon and Marvel realized after the fact, too.

When The Avengers is over — and we mean over-over, when the last credit has rolled — we cut to the gang sitting silently around a table, munching on pitas like any colleagues who have just put in a lot of overtime. In the background, restaurant workers quietly clean-up debris in the apocalypse-adjacent eatery.

And they say… nothing. After saving the planet, they are spent. It’s basically an awkward kind of funny.

You can find bootleg clips of the scene online, but why do that? You’ve already seen the movie, right?

Right?

Anyway …

We join The Avengers reunion already in progress [for an exclusive roundtable that would become an EW cover story].

It’s the day after filming the new scene — weirdly, two days after the premiere — and Chris Hemsworth and Jeremy Renner are seated at a conference table in the Four Seasons Hotel, joking about the look of their respective LEGO figurines. Mark Ruffalo is playing “Hulk SMASH!” with a few of the Hasbro toys scattered across the table while Joss Whedon looks on. We’re waiting for the rest to arrive.

Robert Downey Jr. has just entered the room, and immediately begins mocking the prosthetic that Evans needed to hide his beard for the scene. (Evans also, you’ll notice, covers his face throughout that footage by resting his cheek against his hand.)

“Where is Chris Evans? Getting his face replaced?” Downey asks.

Evans hasn’t arrived yet, but that doesn’t hold back Downey. “Chris, why the long face? Chris, why the WRONG face?” Downey says as the other guys laugh.

Ruffalo shakes his head, his lips pursed. “Oh no …”

“I felt so bad for him!” Hemsworth says, wincing. He makes a swallowed sound, like someone trying to speak through glued-shut lips.

Downey twists his face into an Elephant Man snarl. “Hey guys, I am not an animal,” he mutters.

Pah! Out of nowhere, a rocket from an Iron Man toy fires just past Ruffalo’s head, nearly hitting the real Iron Man beside him.

“What the f–k did you just do?” Downey asks, still giddy.

Ruffalo is still turning over the toy, trying to figure that out. “I just shot myself,” he shrugs.

Whedon, who has been silent this whole time (making ixnay eyes because THERE’S AN EW REPORTER SITTING RIGHT THERE) finally gives up, and tells Downey: “Thank you for having every reporter ask me what we were shooting.”

“You’re welcome,” Downey says, unapologetic about revealing plans for the scene at a press conference the afternoon before.

Whedon was exaggerating, of course. Not every reporter had asked that question … yet.

“So what were you shooting today?” your friendly neighborhood EW reporter inquires.

Whedon squints his eyes, like Mr. Peabody when he’s fed up with Sherman.

Downey opens his arms. “Carnival barker!” he declares. “Last night, I just wanted to make sure the excitement was there.”

Whedon breaks into an impression of what he’s been dealing with all day: “’So I hear you’re shooting a scene?’” he says in the voice of a curious reporter. Leaning back and twiddling his thumbs, the filmmaker offers his fake-smiley response: “‘I’m sure I don’t know what you mean!’”

Then Whedon decides to tell them how it turned out. “We actually went through it as you guys left. It’s awesome. We found three bits, beginning, middle, and end, and the end one was just supreme.”

“So it’s [going to be] the last 30 seconds?” Ruffalo asks.

“They. Are. Tired,” Whedon tells him. “And then at the last second, he is just like [CHOMP],” the filmmaker says, gesturing toward Hemsworth and miming a big bite from a stuffed pita.

“I thought I might be sick, by the way,” Hemsworth says. “I ate one [pita] each take, you know! And by the end, I was like, Whooooaaa …”

“Hello, sir!” Evans says cheerfully as he enters the conference room — unaware that his prosthetic-covered lower face, and the difficulty he had speaking, are the hot topic.

“Not without my beard,” Downey says, mumbling like his jaw is wired shut.

Suddenly Renner, who has been low-key this entire time, breaks into a Chris-Evans-with-prosthetic-make-up Buffalo Bill impression from The Silence of the Lambs: “‘I’d f–k me!’”

Downey, as you can imagine, just loses it.

Evans laughs along like a good sport, but it was probably easier on him when the other Avengers had their faces stuffed with shawarma.

Read more:
More of EW.com’s Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes) coverage
Best of 2012 (Behind the Scenes): The Avengers assemble for an EW roundtable — VIDEO

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