A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to see the new movie out on Valentine’s Day Safe Haven. This movie was a book written by the The Notebook author Nicholas Sparks. Mr. Sparks does not let his readers down with a great romance story, but this one is a thriller too! I sat down with the power house team of Julianne Hough, Nicholas Sparks, Colbie Caillat, Gavin Degraw and Josh Duhamel to discuss making a romantic thriller.
For someone like me who doesn’t get to meet the creators behind an idea or movie it’s interesting to hear who they are and what inspires them. It was so cool to me for instance to actually get to meet Nicholas Sparks. As an avid reader and bibliophile it is pretty cool to hear about the process with which Mr. Sparks wrote this book. I had never read one of his first books The Guardian, but it seems that the initial inspiration for Safe Haven came from his having written The Guardian many moons ago. What amazed me the most about Mr. Sparks was that he only takes 6 months to write a book. It would take me years.
Before meeting any of the creative team behind Safe Haven we were honored with a performance by Colbie Caillat and Gavin Degraw of their song that they wrote for the film. It is such a beautiful song that goes perfectly with the sentiment of the movie. Meeting them was a true highlight of the day. Mr. Degraw cracked us up with joke after joke, but his genuine fondness for the work he does shines through with everything he said. Ms. Caillat and Mr. Degraw actually wrote this song having never read the book or seen the movie. They were given the main points of the plot and yet wrote what is a perfect song for the movie. When asked what they thought of the final product you could see with all genuine sincerity how much they liked the way the song melded with the movie. Like I said it was a true highlight of the day to meet them, and see how down-to-earth they truly are.
I will admit that when we sat down with Julianne Hough I found myself unable to ask any questions. Her life story, and how she came to this movie was riveting. Ms. Hough realized quite early on that this film was a perfect fit for her. As a Nicholas Sparks fan herself on top of having seen all of his movie adaptations she knew she was the right fit for this role. Meeting Ms. Hough you get the feeling from her right away that she is a spitfire who always has more than one project in the works at all times. She talked a lot about all of the things she learned working with Lasse Holstrom (the director), and Josh Duhamel. It was great to meet someone who so loves every aspect of her career including the learning process.
The last person I met that day was the ever gorgeous Josh Duhamel. By the time he walked in the door the heart palpitations were at an all time high. That’s not just by me, but all of the ladies in the room. However, it turns out that as gorgeous as he is, and he is in real life, he’s even nicer if that’s to be believed. This movie was a true departure from his usual movie rolls, but you could tell that he really enjoyed the work, and working with the kids that play his children in the movie. Mr. Duhamel’s lightheartedness in the movie is not just the character but truly who he is.
When asked which seen was his favorite in the movie after seeing it (don’t worry I’m not spoiling anything), he said it was the scene where he’s dancing with his co-star Julianne Hough in the diner. It was the scene he thought he didn’t really see fitting in with the story and didn’t think would work, but when he saw it on film there it was the perfect addition to the movie. Even more interesting was that it was also Ms. Hough’s favorite scene for the same exact reason. It just goes to show that everything is worth trying, even when you think it won’t work, because you could have your best work in the thing you least expect.
About SAFE HAVEN: An affirming and suspenseful story about a young woman’s struggle to love again, Safe Haven is based on the novel from Nicholas Sparks, the best-selling author behind the hit films The Notebook and Dear John. When a mysterious young woman arrives in a small North Carolina town, her reluctance to join the tight knit community raises questions about her past. Slowly, she begins putting down roots, and gains the courage to start a relationship with Alex, a widowed store owner with two young children. But dark secrets intrude on her new life with such terror that she is forced to rediscover the meaning of sacrifice and rely on the power of love in this deeply moving romantic thriller.
For more information on SAFE HAVEN