Ruth Kinane January 25, at What do you remember most about the experience and what it meant to you at the time? I think that it was such an overwhelmingly positive, memorable experience for me because it was my first leading role and it was the first film I worked on away from home. It just gives me an all-encompassing warm feeling inside. There are very few times in your career when the memories and the relationship you have to a project match the relationship that an audience has to the project — but this movie is as special to me as it seems to be to people out there in the world.
It genuinely was a phenomenal experience. From start to finish, it really was a wonderful experience and that was because of Adam Shankman, the director.
He kept everyone invested, together, kept the mood right, especially for some of the dramatic things we had to do, and everyone genuinely loved each other — or liked each other at least. Do you remember auditioning? Back then, I did audition for it, but I swear to God I only read once.
Adam, the director, had a lot of control, and he really liked the idea of Mandy so he was seeing if I could cut it with her. He brought us together in a room and we read a few scenes and chatted mostly, and then all of a sudden it was happening. I remember first reading the script and I remember going to Warner Brothers to audition for it and I was still so new to the game.
The whole process was so unfamiliar to me and weird. I remember that first audition with Adam Shankman and feeling immediately comfortable and I knew that I was in good hands. I loved him so instantaneously and I think that was what I was most excited about; if I had the opportunity to be part of it, I wanted to spend time with this man. I just loved him. Shane was so cool.
Everything about him — the way he dressed, the little cigarettes that he smoked, and the music he listened to. He was the character to me and there was definitely a part of me that absolutely fell in love with him. I was just so caught up in the moment and the experience. I absolutely walked away from that project so convinced that there would never be a project as special as that.
Shane was so wonderful. He had a lot of respect as an actor and I was just the total newbie. I felt incredibly lucky right off the bat that I had someone who was as willing to work with me and who was patient and understanding. He was just the perfect partner for that.
Mandy was really nervous, I remember, in the beginning, but once she committed to it she slipped right into the role effortlessly and it just really fit her. She really grew up on that movie. What do you remember about the clothes, hair, and makeup?
It was transformative because it came at a time in my life when I was only seen from the pop music landscape and through that lens. There was a real significance to coloring my hair. As silly as it sounds, there was a real significance in the way that people saw me, but also in the way that I carried myself and that I saw myself.
It was the last little piece of the puzzle I think in terms of getting into the character. The makeup and wardrobe? I knew what I was signing up for. I was excited to take on a role like this knowing that I was going to completely step outside of myself and dress in a way and in a manner that was appropriate for this character. I think what they had struggled with initially was having to keep the fact that my character was sick under wraps until a certain point in the project.
I remember the first makeup test when they cut my bangs and were doing the first camera test. I remember that Mandy was very nervous about dying her hair. What was the most memorable scene to shoot? I remember a lot from that opening scene by the water — we actually shot in order so it was the first scene we shot in production. We did that so we could bond — me and the guys and girls — minus Mandy. In that scene, we were all supposed to be drinking, but a movie called Save The Last Dance came out and did very well and there was no drinking or cursing in the film so they made an executive decision to drop that the day of shooting the scene.
It was giant pool overgrown with leaves and seaweed. They had to put in scuba divers to search for eels so when I had to jump in to rescue Clay Matt Lutz we were pretty freaked out by the fact there had been divers in there looking for wild animals.
That was really creepy. I remember the rest of them, like Clayne Crawford and Lauren German, just feeling so bad for us. It was one very long night, but we got through it.
Not exactly the way we thought we were going to start it — hey, jump into a creepy eel-infested pool! I remember that scene too because I came down to watch that be filmed. I remember putting on that beautiful ice blue, silk dress and everyone fawning all over it. They were still trying to figure it out so we had to do several different versions. That was a sort of bizarre experience.
Both Jamie and Landon have bucket lists in the movie. Like to see a star? And to get married in the church where my parents were married! Some of the others include: Shane, Landon only has three, can you name any of them? Um, um, um, oh man. What if I say one was a career goal… SW: Oh, one was what he ended up doing at the end, his career, what he ended up being. Um, oh my God! Was one to get married? I have no clue what the others are. The first one is to examine a moon rock.
Sounds like that was from the novel. Do you remember the handshake between Landon and Eric? Could you still do it? Of course I remember… Oh, if I had to actually do it? Al Thompson, who played Eric, he created it on his own. He wanted something that could help us stand apart.
We were trying to have it be as edgy as possible and at the very end of the handshake, it looked like we might have been smoking a joint and we put it out on each other or whatever the heck that is. It was almost like we really believed what we were saying and we were just talking.
Once again, Adam put the camera up and let it run. I just remember seeing her cute little face and cute little smile and being so affirmative about her beliefs. It was part of the storyline, but it was also when I, myself, started to believe in her. What if I give you a line from Mandy, do you think you can remember yours?
Do you remember what you said? That would be Machu Picchu. I was two and a half months in Peru shooting a film called El Dorado. We were in Cusco where Machu Picchu is and we got to spend the day there. The views are incredible.