Bill Condon’s Amazing Commentary for Breaking Dawn Part 1
Bill Condon is the perfect director for the same reason his commentary for Breaking Dawn Part 1 is so illuminating. Condon explains the strengths of each of his actors and collaborators with precision while keeping in mind the complete picture.
Condon’s adoration for the Twilight series is clear; changes made from the novel are explained with grace and thoughtfulness.
Here are the most interesting tidbits-
- The last scene of Breaking Dawn Part 1 is exactly where Part 2 begins.
- “Kristen is the ultimate Twihard.” She remembers the first time she read the books, what made her cry, and she’d lobby for certain lines to be put back in.
- The characters were so comfortable together that “it was between the lines of acting and just being.”
- Towards the end of filming, Kristen Stewart has a scene with Taylor Lautner where Jacob and Bella have a last dance. At the end of the scene as the Quielute recede into the forest, Kristen lifted everyone’s spirits by hiking up her wedding dress and running after Taylor with the hilarious “Jacob! Jacob! I was wrong, I changed my mind, come back, don’t leave me!”
- Kristen Stewart’s Bella in Breaking Dawn 2 is a sort of “Warrior goddess.”
- The original cut of the love scene had “a bit more thrust.”
- Bill Condon toyed with the anticipation for the love scene. He knew it would be impossible to live up to fan anticipation, instead he empahsized reliving the moments as Bella remembered them–where he touched her, where he kissed her, Edward’s smell.
- When Edward and Bella kiss on the beach after the chess game, it was very awkward for them because there were tons of boats with paparazzi in the harbor. The boats had to be digitally removed.
- Carter Burwell’s theme for Renessmee’s lullaby is heard around 46:30, Robert Pattinson will perform it in Part 2.
- Kristen Stewart is an amazing cook. Condon can imagine Kristen as a director, Rob as a writer and Taylor as a producer.
- Part 1 is intimate whereas Part 2 is epic. Many scenes were removed from Part 1 to make it more personal in scope.
- It was nearly impossible to acquire a Visa for Brazilian actress Carolina Virguez (housemaid Kaure) so she could film in Vancouver. A friend of a friend had to contact the White House to make it happen.
- There are 1400 effects shots in Part 1, 2000 in Part 2. In total, it’s more than Avatar. The goal was to not discern when special effects were used.
- Kristen Stewart doesn’t have the vanity of a typical actress. She “wanted to look just as terrible as she could” during Bella’s deterioration.
- Robert Pattinson is unbelievably tender with children, and we’ll se a lot of that in the second film with Renesmee. “Something changes” when he’s around children: he’s very “sweet and caring” with them.
- Stephenie Meyer wore two hats as producer and writer with equal aplomb. She understood what needed to be changed for the movie while not loosing the spirit of the novel.
- Bill Condon’s first Comic-Con for Breaking Dawn was as “unbelievably intense and overwhelming” as everyone told him it would be, he was amazed and pleased at the fan interest in every frame.
- Kristen Stewart pretended to get in a fist fight with her emaciated body-cast dummy on set.
- Condon loved how interactive the fans were in wanting certain scenes to play right, like the childbirth and love scene.
- Condon knew they couldn’t have an R rating, but wanted the childbirth as intense as possible. A rule was imposed in direction to frame the scene as Bella sees it. Stephenie Meyer stood firmly behind Bill Condon in supporting the scene-it wasn’t sanitized it in any way.
- The original score was hugely operatic during the end as Bella recovers into a vampire, it was a huge revelation late in the production to have the score end in silence with her last heartbeat.