*EXCLUSIVE* WFE Extra Experience: Let’s all go to the Parade!

My words are useless here…so let’s give ‘Water For Elephants‘ extra, Emily, the floor. Her WFE Extra Experience is wonderful.

Sweet Emily :)

It was 2:30am when I was rudely awaken by my alarm, Today Was A Fairytale by Taylor Swift.  Little did I know that was exactly what my day would be, a fairytale.  I was up and on the road by 3:00am on my way to Fox Studios to make my 3:48am call time.  Once I arrived, I walked to check-in where Kate was sitting in her usual spot behind the table handing out vouchers.  Next, it was on to wardrobe where I dressed in my vintage 1930’s light pink dress that was meant to make me look 13 years old.

Then, just like any other day on the Water for Elephants set, I made my way to hair and make-up where they would do virtually nothing to me except put bows in my long braided pig tales (I was one of the lucky few that did not have to put curlers in their hair the night before to achieve the 1930’s up-do).  I walked back to holding to wait for the long day of shooting to begin.

The sun had almost completely risen when it was time to go.

First scene of the day: watching the parade go down the Weehawken, NJ street which was adorned with American flags (with only 48 stars), Benzini Bros. Posters, and vintage 1930’s cars.  I stood on the sidewalk with my prop (a flag) as the AD (Assistant Director) yelled, “BACKGROUND!” That was our cue to start watching the parade excitedly as it came down the street.

First, the Big Top Band rolled through playing their instruments.  The clowns and various circus acts followed; and then, there she was, Tai the elephant (Rosie).  She was wearing her usual headdress and was made-up with fake wounds as Reese Witherspoon (Marlena) rode her down the street, waving.  Everyone was all-smiles as Christoph Waltz (August) walked by their side showing them off.  However, in character, Robert Pattinson (Jacob) was watching closely to see if August was going to beat Rosie, as he was notorious for.  The parade went on as zebras, llamas, and a lion followed down the street. “Cut!” the AD yelled, and the extras and actors all returned to their 2010-selves.

In between takes one of the clowns offered Rob a piece of candy. Knowing the clowns’ tendency to prank, Rob jumped back expecting something to happen, but the clown just laughed and reoffered it to him.  Rob, still not trusting the clown, hesitantly took it and walked away laughing.

MORE Rob, Christoph, Rosie, & Sara after the sigh as Emily’s story continues…

We were now ready for our next take, same thing but different angle.  Once again the AD yelled, “Action!” However, one of the llama’s had a mind of its own and refused to walk forward as its handler pulled on its harness as hard as she could.  Blocking the entire parade, everyone, including all the actors and director, erupted in laughter forcing the AD to cut the shot.  Seeing the reaction of everyone on set, I really hope that part makes it in the blooper reel of the DVD extras.

In between each take throughout the day, various families of crew members would take pictures with Tai.  It would be the last chance they get before she was done with her role as Rosie later that day.  Rob, in between takes, would either hit up craft services, or talk with his costars or his assistant/bodyguard (who was with him at all times).  He would also go to Tai and the other animals and pet them.  He really enjoyed interacting with the animals a lot.

While waiting in the hot July sun, it was nearing lunchtime as they sent many extras back to the holding area.  I was one of the lucky few that were chosen to stay for the close-up shot with Robert Pattinson and Christoph Waltz.  This shot was awesome because I would get the chance to be inches away from Rob as he walked down the street for the parade (every Rob-lover’s dream).  We were told to pantomime so the sound guys could pick up Rob and Christoph reciting their lines.

This scene was pretty intense as both the actors spat their lines with anger toward one another while trying to keep their composure for the crowd.  Both Christoph and Rob did this part very well considering their strong friendship off camera.  After many takes of that (which I’m not complaining about at all haha) we were finally off to lunch.  I have to admit for the amount of people they had to feed, the food was really good! We had pasta, cheesy potatoes, corn, bread, salad, ice cream, brownies, and cookies.

After lunch we sat in holding while the rest of the cast and crew finished up their lunch.  Little did we know a lot of extras were going to be cut, but once again I was lucky enough to be chosen to stay.  It was a good thing because these last scenes of the day were all about Robowski.  We walked our way to set and watched as they prepared the next shot.  Jacob was going to be entering a diner.  The shot was as simple as that, but the lighting was not. After waiting quite a while, the cameras were ready to roll.

The AD told me I was supposed to walk behind Rob right when they said, “Background.” Without complaint that’s exactly what I did!  Just when I thought the day was about over, we were told we had one scene left to do.  This would be the best scene of the day too.  It would involve Jacob, Camel, Rosie, and some vegetables.  As we got into our places, I was right up in front of the crowd when I realized who I was standing next to, the one, the only, Sara Gruen and her family.  This was such a surreal moment for me because she was the one who created this all and now she was going to get a cameo in the movie.  The director instructed Rob to push through the crowd and pass directly by Sara to get to Rosie who was misbehaving.

Once again I found myself inches away from Rob (swoon).  This scene had a lot of dialogue in it so I got to hear Rob’s gorgeous American accent over and over; however, right as they would yell cut, he would go back to his even more gorgeous British accent. Right after one of the shots, he was standing in front of me and flashed one of his infamous smiles at me.  I had a minor freak-out but recovered fast enough to smile back.  We found ourselves doing this many times because poor Tai was tired and didn’t want to listen very well (I don’t blame her! She’d been working hard all day).

While we had a break between takes, I had the privilege of talking with the author.  She asked me when I got there and when I responded, 3:30am, she was shocked and seemed grateful that I and many others had been there for over 16 hours to bring her story to life.  I then asked her how it felt having her story made into a major motion picture and she said, “I work with words, and words cannot even describe.” (something she later posted on her facebook profile).  We chatted for a while after that about different things about the book and what she thought about the script (which she thought was very well written).  We finished up the day with a few more shots of the same thing and were released at 8:30pm.

This experience on Water for Elephants has truly been amazing.  Having the privilege of waking up in the morning and working with Oscar winners and the world’s biggest heartthrob is something I would have only dreamed of two months ago.  It has now become a reality I will never forget and I am grateful to have the opportunity of sharing with the world.

……..wow, right? We’re grateful for YOU, Emily. Your recap was beautiful and we appreciate you bringing the WFE fans into the fold. The WFE extras hold a special place in all our hearts :)

About Emily: A film student at CSULB (Kinker Tink: GO BEACH!), she hopes to one day become a director, an actress, and/or a producer in the film industry.  Currently, she works as an extra on various movies and television shows and also works on awards shows as a talent/celebrity handler. You can follow Emily on twitter @emilygee5.

We wish you all the best in your life and your career, Emily!

Missed the other WFE Extra Experiences? Read Rousty Robert’s recap HERE and Cody Wood’s Rube’s-Eye View HERE

Follow @h2oforelephants on Twitter and Facebook!

About tinkrbe1l3

Fan and supporter of all things Robert Pattinson. Co-chauffeur on CosmopolisFilm.com, co-blogger on RobsessedPattinson.com, co-kinker on WaterForElephantsFilm.com, as well as upcoming films: theroverfilm.com, holdontomefilm.com, missionblacklist.com, mapstothestarsfilm.com, queenofthedesertfilm.com. Co-blogger on RobertPattinsonFilms.com
This entry was posted in Cast, Exclusive, Filming Locations, Fox Movie Studio, Francis Lawrence, On Location, Props & Sets, Reese Witherspoon, Robert Pattinson, Rosie, Sara Gruen, Tai, Water for Elephants and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
  • Vicki

    I enjoyed your story…thank you for sharing it!

  • Shae

    Awww that is very cool. Thanks for sharing your experience Emily and you ladies here on the site for all the info!

  • Alison4828

    Excellent recap!! I throughly enjoyed reading her adventure…and to get flashed a smile from Rob is like the heavens opening up…whenever Rob smiles an angel gets its wings :)

    Thanks for sharing Emily!! And thanks for sharing this “Exclusive”!

  • evelyn

    wow!! that must be so cool.
    i wished i was a extra :(

  • Mitts402002

    Loved the insight. What an experience! Thank you Emily for sharing. All the inside looks that the Rubes and Roustabouts have given us just will enhance the WFE experience when we finally get to see it. I can’t wait. Please Santa I will be good, get me to the premiere.

  • gkngc04

    I loved it and I loved that she was able to smile back at Robert when it counted! Well done!

  • http://www.twifans.com/profile/Kim35 Kimc333

    Thank you so much Emily for this wonderful write up of your experience! What a surreal experience it must have been! I’m so happy for you! Wow – Amazing!

  • flying099

    I really enjoyed your story. Thanks for sharing. I would never have been as composed as you around Rob…

  • http://www.pinkcandlesatridgemonthigh.blogspot.com pinkcandles

    Thanks so much for sharing your experiences with us. That’s really awesome that you got to be part of this film. And you even met the author too! I can’t wait til this movie comes out!

  • Valerie

    Wow, great recap! Sounds like a wonderful day on set. Thanks for sharing the story!

  • Sandy

    Thank you so much for your insight on the movie Emily. You are truly an amazing writer! You made me and I am sure the others feel like we were on the set as well. How truly lucky you were to meet the author and get to be as close as you were to Rob. I can’t imagine how I would have acted had he smiled at me. Good luck in the future and thank you for sharing your wonderful experience with us!!

  • Karen TenEyck

    Emily: It was great to hear about your experiences on the other side of the camera. Very well told. I am the graphic designer for the film. It was a joy to work on for me too.

  • FancyVal

    Yet another amazing story you get to share with people! Haha sounds like you had a blast and I am officially jealous of your life! My favorite part has to be your minor freak out lol

  • Pingback: Robert Pattinson News – The latest news, photos and videos of Robert Pattinson » Blog Archive » “Water for Elephants” Extra Talks About Working on Set with Robert Pattinson()

  • sarah.bluhdd

    awwww, see EMILY doing big thangs already! gta start somewhere &look where she’s at. icnt wait to watch the movie &see her :D just for tht, im gna read the book! :) truly an amazing experience! wish tht was me, but not for me. aha’

  • Pingback: i am shallow» Blog Archive » “water for elephants”, the big top goes big screen()

  • http://www.twitter.com/munkyjam91 Amna

    This was truly beautiful! Thanks for giving my bff Emily the opportunity to do this! She’s had a great time and is honestly the perfect choice for this movie. Can;t wait to see you on screen Gee! =-D

  • holly

    Fantastic recap and I’m pleased such a lovely girl got to have such a reat day with Rob and the cast/crew. I’ll remember to keep an eye out for her when the film comes out.

  • jan

    I just LOVE living vicariously through posts like this one…big THANK YOU to Emily for sharing such an awesome experience with us! :D

  • http://www.fanfiction.net/u/2091056/deb24601 deb24601

    Amazing recap, thank you so much Emily for sharing. :)

  • MAIARA

    i can imagine how cool it was to work with animals and such great co-workers.
    And it’s nice to know that Rob is really gentle with the animals and that he’s always laughing, my heart jumped a little.
    Thanks, Emily, it was amazing!!

  • maria cyprus

    AMAZING story, i enjoy reading other people’s experiences with Rob :P i wanna know every little thing about him(in a non-creepy way, or maybe just a little bit). And OMG the part where he smiled at her totally made me lose it just by reading it. I wouldn’t be able to handle it like she did *thumps up*

  • Lydia

    Emily, What a cool experience! Since I live on the east coast (outside of Philadelphia), I have never had any real exposure as to what it’s really like on a movie set. So, I really appreciate that you shared yours. Having read the book and being a huge fan of Rob’s, I can’t wait to see it all brought to life on the screen. When it finally does come out, I’ll make sure that I look out for the girl in the pink dress with bows on her braids. Best wishes for continued success.

  • Alexandria

    Thanks Emily for sharing this amazing story with us. Ohhh how much I envy you (the nice Envy though) for getting to be so closed to Rob…my forever unrequitted love!!!
    Congratulations, and the best for you in your career as an actress!!!!

  • Pingback: WFE Extra Discusses Her Time on Set During Rob’s Scenes ::()

  • oldcoach

    Thank You so much for sharing your experience with us. I am sure you will remember all this for years to come.

  • karen

    Thank you Emily for sharing this amazing story with us. I live in Alberta, Canada very far, far away from movie sets and reading your story through your eyes, I could just imagine the beautiful images, voices, acting that was going on and being able to be next to Robert, who in my mind is always smiling and a wonderful person, has been a truly wonderful experience for me. Good luck to you Emily in your future endeavours and when I see the movie, I will look for you and your beautiful smile and remember your words on this awesome WFE blog. Thank you once again.

  • Pingback: ROBsessed Brasil || Robert Pattinson – All areas accessed » Blog Archive » Emily, uma figurante de “Water For Elephants”, fala sobre trabalhar com Rob e divide sua experiência no set!()

  • olivia

    Thank you , thank you Emily. What a lovely recap. You are an excellent writer and gave us all such a vivid opportunity to relive those wonderful moments you had on set. What strikes me over and over from everyone who has brought us peeks into the production of WFE is the dedication, professionalism, and desire to bring an authentic experience to the screen. This will be such an amazing film with a first rate and classy cast and crew.
    Good luck as you finish school and may you have an amazing career in this field that you love. Will look for you in the film. So happy you were able to have a fantastic fan experience with Rob at the same time! Hope you get to go to an opening night event!

  • Pingback: Another “Water For Elephants” extra recaps her experience on the set «()

  • Pingback: Robert Pattinson: “Water for Elephants” Statistin plaudert aus dem Nähkästchen!()

  • Pingback: Emily, A WFE Extra, Share Her Experience « RPattzSA()

  • Linda

    This is why I could never be an extra. Being close to Rob or one little smile from him and I would have ruined the scene! I admire you, Emily. I could not have done it!! Thanks for your story!

  • Elizabeth

    Thank you Emily for sharing your story with us. I’ll be watching for you in the film.
    Best of luck to you in your career!

  • Pingback: Pattinson Brasil // A sua maior fonte brasileira de informações sobre RPattz » Blog Archive » Figurante de Water For Elephants relata sua experiência()

  • Vanessa

    WOW Emily! Your story (recap) was amazing!!! You are so lucky to have experienced something like this!!! If i was an extra and was near Rob i would have freaked out and like would be frozen in shock and excitement :D haha but that’s amazing how you acted so calm around him and all the other stars! Can’t wait to see this movie and look for you in the backgrounds! :)

  • Pingback: Robert Pattinson - Online :: Celebrating 1 Year Online! :: The Best Online Fan Resource For Everything Robert Pattinson :: Images :: News Content :: Multimedia & Much More...()

  • Pingback: Top Posts — WordPress.com()

  • albalola gutierrez

    I really enjoy your story,lucky hard working girl….but been so near Rob , must be awsome , i hope all your dreams come true, god bless !!!!

  • Didi

    I’ve enjoyed reading your experience Emily. Thanks so mucho for sharing it with us! This movie is going to be a hit, not just for the awesome casting, but the story itself is so beautiful. I can’t wait to see it!

    BTW, so Rob has been working till yesterday (friday). Some rumors placed him in Montreal, but if he’s been at set, it must be all fake.

  • Pingback: Sul set di Water for Elephant: lavorare con Robert Pattinson, una comparsa racconta - RobertPattinsonMoms()