But you planted ideas in the second one? In a different way than you
would have done for the first one, because you really didn’t know at
Kate Beckinsale: No, they did for the first one.
Len Wiseman: We did for the first one.
Kate Beckinsale: They had a whole plan the first one.
Wiseman: Yeah, what we’re resolving with Marcus in
this one, the last elder, you’ll find that
in this film there’s still the characters that whether the
characters have died in the first film or not there’s a lot of stuff
that’s still being discovered and uncovered about them that’s in this
film that we always knew we were going to do in the first one. So yeah,
there’s aspects of this one that…
Question: Which could carry over.
Len Wiseman: …that absolutely could carry over, yeah.
This question is for Scott. In this film you get to be hybrided out
more than you did in the first. Can you share a little bit about the
Speedman: Oh, the makeup process, I really enjoyed it. This one it’s a
little more intricate. I don’t know, we won’t say too much but it’s a
little more detailed so it’s a little longer. But for whatever reason I
really like that process. The guys that I get to work with are amazing
and they’re very nice and they are like artists. They work really hard.
So that part of it’s really fun. And in terms of just physically, I
love that you kind of get to, it sounds kind of corny but you can kind
of disappear into the whole makeup thing, and I love that. And I love
jumping around in it and being kind of crazy and…
Kate Beckinsale: Plus you look hot.
Scott Speedman: Yeah, I look, I look pretty good in it, so…
Wiseman: He becomes a different person
when he’s on set with the makeup. You realize that.
Scott Speedman: Yeah, I do. Yeah, well yeah.
Kate Beckinsale: It’s the mask.
Speedman: It’s the mask. But it is really fun I mean and the, you know,
they’ve been letting me do a lot more of the stunts and stuff like
that. So I love that.
Question: Len, have you found that Vancouver has provided the right locations for everything? Is it just like in your head?
Wiseman: Yes and no. We built a lot because it’s still trying to
bring across a European flavor in Vancouver. So a lot
of the movie takes place in the mountains, so that was easier. But there was a lot of stuff that was quite difficult.
We go to an ancient monastery. There’s a whole medieval
village. There’s a lot of stuff that was easier to find in Eastern
Europe, but there was a balance of what kind of movie I could get here versus there. I mean Underworld
it was great to go and just have all that production value free just
‘cause it’s there and didn’t have to build it. So we’ve found a lot and we’ve built a lot.
Question: It’s also nice that people speak English.
Len Wiseman: I can’t even tell you. Yeah.
To Scott and Kate, it seems like in this movie there’ll be something
different between your characters. I’m also sensing a sort of a
Tracy/Hepburn thing with fangs and hair.
Len Wiseman: I haven’t heard that one.
Kate Beckinsale: Not really, not quite that.
Scott Speedman: I don’t think it’s that.
Beckinsale: No, he first movie obviously they met up and they were in very different positions and he was human and she was
vampire and she was doing a lot of sort of telling him, you know,
bringing him up to speed with what was happening and he was just
generally sort of confused and, you know, not, not really knowing what
was going on. And, you know, by the time they start this movie
obviously he’s no longer just human and, um, they, they just got a
little bit more time to get to know each other, (CHUCKLES) you know,
so, um, so they’re much more partners than they were before, and –
Scott Speedman: Yeah, there’s just more of a connection too.
Question: Are there any further thoughts on the relationship dynamic there as well?
Wiseman: I mean actually I, you know, I always– I was, was intending
that the first film ended with the relationship beginning. I know a lot
of people– there was, there was this ROMEO AND JULIET sort of aspect
took off, um, and it wasn’t necessarily that. There was always the, the
story between Lucian and his love that was the parallel to the more
traditional ROMEO AND JULIET, um, story. And the Michael and Selene –
they, they were, you know, Selene hated humans, um, from, from the
get-go, so that relationship was, um, was really– it was really not
given a chance to start until the film was, was kind of closing. So I,
I felt like if– I had done my job if at the end of the movie people
would speculate will there be a relationship? What will that
relationship be like? Will it build? Will it, you know? And, uh, and so
this one now we get into what, what happens to that relationship. This
is kind of what you guys said.
Scott Speedman: That’s what I was going to say.
This one’s for you, Len. The first film had the very distinct blue
look. How did you approach this more brand film?
Wiseman: The, the blue look actually was– a lot of it was what I
wanted and, and actually to be honest a lot of the really blue look
came as a, um, uh… When, when we went through the, the, the coloring
process, um, the, the release print was a bit more blue and almost
black and white blue than I had intended, just because I was pushing
the look so far. We had, we had an end result that wasn’t entirely what
I was, what I was going for. The DVD is closer because I was able to
retime it and recolor it. So this, this film has a bit more color in,
in, uh, but in different environments. We’ve got the, the cold blue
UNDERWORLD feel, but then open up into some different looks, just–
also just to, uh, to do something different and, uh, and just have a
different variety of, of, um, um, environments and everything for the,
for the film. So it’s uh…
Kate Beckinsale: There’s a lot more scope in the story for doing different things in this one.
Len Wiseman: Yeah, it o– it opens up. Underworld
was also very urban and kind of claustrophobic, and this film opens up.
It’s on the run. It’s outdoors. It’s in the mountains. And I didn’t
want to do the same film over again.
Question: Do the flashback scenes take on a different look?
Wiseman: The flashback ones will as well. We have– the, the genetic
memories will– There, there’s genetic memories in this film that will
have, uh, that will have the look of, of, um, the ones in the first
film. And then there’s other flashbacks. When we go into the medieval
era and all that there’s, um, a whole different design for that as well.
Question for Len. In terms of the title of the film, UNDERWORLD
EVOLUTION, what kind of evolution do we see in terms of story and
Len Wiseman: (STARTS)
Kate Beckinsale: It’s really a working title anyway.
Len Wiseman: It, it is, it is a working title, yeah.
Question: Oh, it is?
Wiseman: I mean it’s something — yeah. (LAUGHTER) Yeah, I don’t, I
don’t want to– it’s, it’s not com—Um, if, if it ends up being, uh,
evolution, um, that was something that came about through the– it is
an evolution of the characters and what, what happens to, um, what
happens actually to Selene’s character as, um, as well. There’s,
there’s an evolution with her character. And just also the– it was, it
was, it, it fit the, um, the story with the elders as well. Um, that’s
all I really, I guess, want to say on it without giving too much up.
A lot of people saw the first movie and liked it a lot. The premise of
vampires versus werewolves is a cool premise. But some people were
disappointed with the first movie. What about the second movie do you
think will get them back in to try and get back into the premise…?
Wiseman: I think the second movie will im-impress a lot of people and
it’ll upset the same amount of people. I mean it’s, it’s always…
Kate Beckinsale: Everyone’s always disappointed in some way.
Wiseman: Some people it– will love it. Other people will, you know,
will hate it and that will be the case for any movie anybody ever
makes. I mean so, um…
Question: What about this movie will people like that didn’t like the first film? What will grab them?
Wiseman: I mean probably him. (POINTING TO SCOTT) Yeah. (LAUGHS) I mean
in terms of, um, what will grab them? It’s a, it’s a, it’s a, it’s a
Beckinsale: Well, can I just say something? I do think that the way
that the trailer happened was the trailer was very impressive and I
think people were expecting a movie that had a much bigger budget than
ours did. And I think that the expectation from the trailer was to see
something that could compete with THE MATRIX or any other, you know,
eighty to a hundred million-dollar movie. It was made for
nineteen/twenty million dollars. So I think there may have been a
slight like “Ooh, there’s not quite as much action as I would have
expected of a movie of this scale,” and it wasn’t a movie of that
scale. So possibly it’ll be a little bit more realistic with people
sort of maybe getting what they think they’re going to get this time.
Wiseman: Uh-huh. We, we did. That’s r– We got a lot of that and felt a
lot of that because the, the, the, the ad campaign, everything, the,
the trailer was presented no different than — in my, my mind — no
different than a, a DAREDEVIL or whatever was out at that time. And I
was actually really shocked at the….
Kate Beckinsale: You were actually upset.
Len Wiseman: Yeah, it was like a, a bus, a bus goes by with Underworld
as it passes by the billboard, as we have the, you know, and I was
impressed about how large they were presenting my small film. So there
was a bit of that reaction. So and, and now, um, you know, we have
probably closer to what…
Kate Beckinsale: To reflect the movie this time.
Len Wiseman: Exactly.
Question: What experience do you think the audience will have as they’re watching the movie in the theater?
Len Wiseman: Oh God. Their reaction?
Question: As they’re watching the movie.
Len Wiseman: As they’re watching the movie?
Question: Not after, but during.
Len Wiseman: As they’re watching. Um…
Kate Beckinsale: Profound change…
Len Wiseman: Yes!
Question: How did your personal relationship change the nature of your working relationship with one another?
Kate Beckinsale: I’m not scared of him now as I was.
Wiseman: That’s a shame. Yeah, actually there’s no intimidation factor
on unfortunately. I mean it’s, to be honest it’s fantastic because
there’s a lot of stuff that you’re kind of nervous about that you can’t
really discuss with your actress.
Kate Beckinsale: Could you hold your stomach in please.
Len Wiseman: Yeah. Could you not use…
Kate Beckinsale: Which you can say to your wife.
Wiseman: Yeah. So there’s a lot of things like that that it’s more
comfortable and you can have discussions about certain things where
you’re not nervous about how they’re going to take your comment. And we
are on the same page so often that it helps just to cut through a lot
of the kind of tip-toeing around that a director has to do.
Kate Beckinsale: You still have to do it with him though.
Len Wiseman: Yeah, so it cuts down on a lot of that. And I find it makes it much easier.
Beckinsale: It means we get to be in the same country. It’s quite
difficult conducting a relationship in this business where you’re
separated for months and months. And so that we were both able to work
and were able to actually sleep in the same bed is a miraculous treat.
So that’s really fun. We haven’t had any big fights or anything like
that, so the crew still likes us.
Len Wiseman: I know. Amazing.
What kind of new challenges are you getting being that this is a sequel
and it’s a much much bigger film now? What are the new challenges that
Kate Beckinsale: We didn’t have a big press junket last time.
Wiseman: Yeah, I was going to say questions like that to start. The
fact that people know about the franchise now. Like I said, before it
was just any decision that you had on the way certain things should go
or the way the characters should play out. There’s
a lot of anticipation now that there wasn’t before. So the pressure.
There’s pressure on to satisfy what the fans are looking for.
Question: So do you feel you have a little less creative control this time around?
Len Wiseman: No, I have more.
Kate Beckinsale: You have more this time.
Len Wiseman: More I think, yeah.
You guys are now veterans of kicking ass on-screen. What was it like …
nobody expected to see you in a film like that. And you hadn’t done an
action film before.
Scott Speedman: No.
Kate Beckinsale: He’s a natural. He is really good at it.
Len Wiseman: He, he is a complete natural, yeah.
Question: So does it feel like play now?
Scott Speedman: Yeah. I don’t know, for whatever reasons I’ve been having way more fun too.
Beckinsale: I was paralyzed with terror the first time. I just felt
every single time I did anything I was going to just get busted and all
the stunt guys would be like “Oh, the girl, you know.” I mean I really
did. I had to be really coached out of running like this you know….
Len Wiseman: I would always say the “With the hands and all.”
Beckinsale: And also because I had much more of a dance background, if
I did any jumps or anything I was sort of inclined to, it was gentle
reminders of “You’re not in Peter Pan
right now. Look tough, look tough.” That kind of seems to have just
absorbed now. So I still get nervous and think “Oh, God, I’m going to
blow it and ruin it,” I actually can throw a punch and I can kind of
pretty much do that stuff, which still surprises me. So it is more fun.
I remember the first time I shot the gun was on the set. I felt
immediately afterwards like please, just go into the corner and quietly
sob, cause it was quite a shock. Whereas now it’s crossbows and God
knows what else. The costume was very comfortable, so I’ve been
complaining a tiny bit more about that. But it’s really fun. I mean
it’s peculiar. I’ve never had the experience of, especially ‘cause
there’s one costume for the whole movie and then put the same one on
again and you’re right back and your hair is the same and you go “Wow,
I have more wrinkles now,” ‘cause you notice what’s different. But as I
said I had such a nice experience on the first one that, it’s…
Len Wiseman: I mean just the process of going back and stepping back into it. It’s a bit like going back to…
Kate Beckinsale: Summer camp.
Wiseman: To high school or summer camp, it really is. Just when we were
doing the tests and got the suit back on and everybody’s back out there
I thought was a really good feeling of just feeling like you’re back
with kind of like the high school friends, I thought.
Kate Beckinsale: Well it is. It is.
This question is for Kate. Could you compare the differences in the
directing styles in the action sequences between this film and VAN
Beckinsale: Wow. I like Stephen very much but obviously he’s not my
husband, so our rapport is different. I mean he’s terribly nice and
very upbeat and very sweet and everything, but obviously on sort of
every level. Len and I are very well matched in terms of he can sort of
go “Can just do that?” and I’ll go, “Oh, yes,” you know, and nobody
else probably knows what we’re talking about. But the point comes
across. It’s different.
Len Wiseman: We, we’ve become an old couple very quick.
Kate Beckinsale: I had a lot more training with the stunt men on this movie. I had sort of two or three months of it before Underworld,
so I knew those people very well by the time we started. I think
everybody experiences there’s a kind of little Zen guru and little
acolyte relationship that develops and you do start thinking “Stuntmen
are the coolest people ever in the world,” and because you’re so busy
trying to sort of get to their kind of Olympic gymnast level, and they
just seem so brilliantly talented. On Van Helsing
I literally showed up and they were saying “Well, you’re doing a flip
today, you know,” so I think they felt I’d had my training by then so
it was just a very different kind of vibe really and this time we’ve
got the same people. So I’d hate to kind of do Stephen or any of his
team a disservice, but these are kind of my friends. So it’s just a
Question: Is there less wire work on this one?
Kate Beckinsale: Yeah, yeah. Not because we failed on the first one. Yeah, a bit less.
Len Wiseman: A bit less and also there was a lot of backlash from a lot of wirework going on and…
Kate Beckinsale: And we find even we’ve seen that quite a lot.
Wiseman: It’s just a bit overplayed, so I just wanted to cut back on
the level of wirework stuff. I mean we have to use a lot of wires for
the creatures and I mean just sometimes when the creatures are walking
around. But in terms of actual flips and kind of Hong Kong type stuff,
really toned back on that kind of wire work.