A “Smurfed” Weekend

This past weekend, I spent a grand total of 24 hours on the new “Smurfs” movie, due out in theatres in the summer of 2011. “Smurfs” is an action-packed movie  filmed in NYC, combining both CGI Smurfs and some of Hollywood’s most recognizable faces.

I had the good fortune of being pulled up from general bg work to do a very featured bit with Hank Azaria. Hark, who plays Gargamel, takes a chopstick out of my hair and uses it as a magic wand. I am not going to give away who he transforms and how, but it was pretty darn cool.

In this scene I am a posh receptionist, and Gargamel comes running in, pulling the chopstick out of my hair, working his magic, and sticking the chopstick back in my hair as he exits. For me, it was a blast to be part of this scene. My reaction to the ugly man assaulting my head, the magic transformation, and being assaulted a second time was fun, and important. Hank was a joy to work with. I was very impressed with his physical and vocal commitment to the character. Besides being an extremely consistent actor, he was friendly and professional with me.

I must also comment on my experience working with Raja Gosnell, the Director. He was such a personable, friendly, and pro-active director – and it made my job and my responsibilities so much easier than they could have been.

While I can’t share (and also don’t know) too much about the movie, I can tell you that the Smurfs will all be small and CGI, while Hank, Neil Patrick Harris, Sofia Vergara, and other talents will be life-size people.

As a side note, I was absolutely in love with the cat (cats) used to play Azrael. There were three on set, but only obviously used one at a time and it depended on which cat was ready and cooperating best at that moment. The wranglers and Hank worked with them a good amount, and it was clear that the actions had been studied and polished by these felines and their wranglers before getting to set. They were crazy cute, and the two on set with me over the two days were named Larry and Crinkly. To make them look identical, they had been dyed, and had mascara on their whiskers. Even movie star cats get hair and make-up treatment. Nothing is as it seems. The magic of movies!


~ by Elizabeth on June 12, 2010.

One Response to “A “Smurfed” Weekend”

  1. How did I not notice this post until now? I can only imagine how hard it must be to make cats “act!” I’m sure Mozart is ready for his hair and makeup, though.

    Sounds like a great experience – even if it did leave your head a bit sore.

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