Steven Spielberg has endeared himself to the entire blogging community by inviting quite a few movie bloggers to lunch and a personal meeting with him at Universal Studios to thank them for not publishing the stolen photos and all the plot details from the upcoming Indiana Jones movie. Bloggers from JoBlo.com, ComingSoon.net, Slashfilm, IGN, CHUD, IESB, and Latino Review enjoyed a catered lunch just off set and were treated to a few minutes of Q&A with the director. While their travel doesn’t sound like it was covered, they were treated well.
It was Spielberg’s own idea to hold the lunch for the movie bloggers, and although he only spent a short time with them it sounds like it was his own idea to invite them and that he made sure they enjoyed their visit. They were not allowed on set, where there were about two days left of shooting, due to those continuing issues with trying to keep plot details private, but they did get glimpses of several stars in costume, including Harrison Ford and Shia LaBeouf.
Spielberg talked proudly of using real film instead of digital footage for the upcoming movie, and said that Ford and LaBeouf do many of their own stunts. He is favoring old school movie making and editing for the production, and will use digital special effects sparingly. He praised LaBeouf’s acting and said he plans to work with him on another Transformers movie that they’re trying to fast track.
A few minutes later, we met Spielberg in a private screening room where he enthusiastically greeted us sporting his usual dressed-down-with-ball-cap look. Spielberg was gracious with his time and while he talked with us a few minutes, he was upfront about not wanting to answer any questions about the movie. Of course as journalists, we had to try and this is what we got:
Production is two days away from wrapping and the director raved about how great it was to have Ford back and how amazed he was that he did the majority of his own stunts. He said, looking back to the last film, which was 18 years ago, he couldn’t tell the difference between the action star from then to now because he’s still that good. He also told us that the Russians are the villains in the film and he hired Russian actors to ensure accuracy with their accents.
He went on to say that the fourth installment of the “Indiana Jones” franchise is shot on film and not digital, despite Lucas’ encouragements of doing so because he is old-fashioned, and he added that if the people before him, who he considered great directors, did it on film then that’s good enough for him.
Spielberg then talked about what a great addition Shia LaBeouf has been and how he’s been doing all of his own stunts, too. Speaking of LaBeouf, Spielberg told us there are going to be multiple “Transformers” films that the hot young actor is signed on to do and that there’s already a story for the second one, but production depends on the pending writer’s strike
He is also set to co-direct a series of three movie with Peter Jackson based on Tintin, a series of popular graphic novels, and he wants to increase awareness of how great the story will be as it’s not that well known in America:
The industrious director talked about Tintin, a project he’s working on with Peter Jackson, based on the popular graphic novels by Belgian artist Hergé. He said that as of now there are only two directors with Jackson directing the first installment, himself directing the second movie, and if they don’t hire another director, the two would co-direct the third. Jackson will shoot his movie in New Zealand and Spielberg will shoot in the States, and Spielberg said the two are very collaborative and that the film will be using motion-capture, which is still new to him.
At the end of the meeting Spielberg signed limited edition Indiana 4 posters for all the bloggers. While they weren’t allowed to take pictures and we don’t have any photos of the event, it was incredible of Spielberg to thank the bloggers and he gets major points for inviting them. A little kindness goes a long way, and you know that even jaded gossip bloggers like me will think twice before publishing spoilers for Spielberg movies in the future. He’s watching, and he knows that you catch more flies with honey.
Thanks to Fark for the heads up about this story.