***Disclosure: I received an all expense paid trip to Hollywood, courtesy of Disney and Marvel. However, all opinions are 100% honest and have not been influenced in any way.***
You may recall that I posted a neat piece about the shield from Captain America not too long ago. I also posted a picture of me wielding the very same shield used in the movies, making my kids think that their Mommy is a bona-fide super hero! It has worked wonders in getting them to do their chores, by the way. Once they think that Mommy is going to unleash her powers on them, they get right to work. It has been so effective, my husband actually had my shield photo turned into a huge canvas print to remind the kids that Mom is a force to be reckoned with! (Hey, whatever works, right?)
Anyway, getting to learn about and handle the shield was only part of our adventures on the set of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. We actually got to witness a scene being filmed! It was absolutely surreal!
The set itself was housed within a large, warehouse-like building. I guess filming requires chilly temps, because the first thing I noticed was that it was positively frigid! Perhaps it's because filming with the likes of Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, and Frank Grillo could cause a serious meltdown. These guys are the hottest folks in Hollywood, after all!
The scene that was being filmed during our visit takes place on the Quinjet. While the Quinjet looks pretty foreboding on screen, the actual set was fairly small. It was tucked away in the corner, away from the hustle and bustle of hair, make-up, and Kraft services. I was amazed by just how busy everyone was. Filming what will probably be the movie of the year takes an army of folks, all with very specific duties that help everything run smoothly. Everyone was running around, chatting, and making sure everything was perfect. The only time there was dead silence was when you heard the words "Action!" Then it was absolutely, positively quiet. You could probably hear a pin drop during filming! These folks had it down to an exact science.
When you watch a movie, it's easy to forget how much work and time goes into every single scene. While we were on set, we sat in a few rows of chairs off to the side of the action, and were provided with earphones and a screen to watch the filming process.
The scene they were filming wasn't a long one by any means, but it took a few hours to get it just right. Every time someone got hung up on their lines or something wasn't spot-on, they had to start over. Even facial expressions had to be perfect. They also had to film from different angles to capture not only the talents' expressions, but the set itself. Acting is hard work, and until going behind the scenes, I never realized just how much attention to detail goes into each and every scene, no matter how short or insignificant it may seem.
One of the things I enjoyed the most was seeing Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson and Frank Grillo interact while the cameras weren't rolling. Every time they yelled "Cut!", the attitude immediately became more relaxed. The stars came somewhat out of character in an instant, and had fun laughing and joking with one another. It's nice to see that Hollywood's brightest stars are really just ordinary people who just happen to be insanely beautiful and have really cool jobs.
By the time they were done filming the scene, all of the bloggers had the lines memorized, too. After awhile, I was saying the lines to myself as they acted them out. It was really cool to feel like I could be Scarlett in my own mind, if only for a few hours. (And what I wouldn't give to be the gorgeous Ms. Johansson, if only for a moment!)
Check out this BRAND NEW trailer for Captain America: The Winter Soldier. The first scene being shown aboard the Quinjet? That is what we witnessed being filmed! And I still found that, a year later, I can recite the lines about pirates and maximum casualties. Pretty amazing, right? I am still pinching myself!
Okay, so I have to save the best for last. While watching the filming and seeing all the work put in by countless talented individuals was beyond amazing, I would have to say that the highlight of my morning was when Chris Evans, Captain America HIMSELF, came over to hang out and chat with us for a bit.
Chris was super sweet, and was shocked when we started reciting his lines back to him. You see, the cast had absolutely no idea that we were able to hear everything going on, even after the cameras stopped rolling. He even got a little bashful about it for a second, which was adorable. What he didn't know is that he had 25 ladies, most of whom are married, turning to a pile of goo at his feet. So no matter what lines were flubbed, it didn't matter. We were too distracted by his hunkiness. And hunky, he is....When he walked over to us, the first thing I thought was "Oh my God...This guy is built like a very tall, human action figure!" I'm sure that being in perfect physical condition comes with the territory of playing a super-hero, but WOW....All I can say is WOW....Would you like some fries with that shake, Mr. Evans?
One thing we talked about that really stands out in my memory was filming locations. Chris told us that they were headed to both the Washington, DC area and the Cleveland, OH area to film. I told him that I spent 20 years in the DC metro area, and just moved back to the Cleveland area, so I knew both places well. He asked which I preferred, and seemed surprised when I said Cleveland. You know what they say...You can take the girl out of Ohio, but you can't take Ohio out of the girl! My heart will always belong in the Midwest!
A few weeks after I returned home from my magical MARVEL trip, I was watching the news and many a local commuter was frustrated because of road closures....I guess the filming of Captain America: The Winter Soldier got in the way of a speedy commute. And all I could do was smile and think about my time on the set of this fantastic film.
Oh, and of course, being the nice guy that he is, Chris Evans gladly posed for pictures with us. If I had known I'd be photographed with this handsome man, I would have chosen a different top and not had my hair in a ponytail. Oh well. Still, here I am, with my head tucked right into Chris's armpit. (No, he didn't stink! He actually smelled really, really good.)
So that's my first-hand experience on the set of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. It was so much fun to get to see just how involved movie making is, and breathing the same air as Hollywood's A-List stars was pretty unbelievable, too. It was definitely an experience that I will be telling my grandkids about one day...Not too soon, though. I am far too young to be a Grandma!
Are you looking forward to seeing this movie? Well, you're in luck! Pre-sale tickets are available on Fandango right now! So hurry up and grab a few!
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CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER releases in theaters everywhere on April 4, 2014!
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