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Q&A with “Safe Haven” stars
Josh Duhamel, known for his role as Lennox in the “Transformers” movies, stars alongside Julianne Hough of “Dancing with the Stars” in the film adaptation of Nicholas Sparks’ beloved novel “Safe Haven.”
The North Texas Daily recently had the chance to sit down and talk with Duhamel and Hough about their film at the Ravenwood Manor in Dallas.
Josh, how was it starring opposite of Julianne?
Josh Duhamel: “Julianne is a very easy person to connect with. She’s an open book. She was very sweet, very relatable and easy to get along with. When her name came up for this, I really liked the idea. These movies live or die on how well the two people who are supposed to be falling in love connect. It wasn’t as if we had to work so hard at building chemistry in this movie.”
You kind of see a different side of her, too.
JD: I remember from ‘Dancing with the Stars’ everything was all very proper and prim and she is just the opposite of that. She was– She was like a dude. [Laughs]
Julianne Hough: “Yes. That is actually a compliment. I like that. My brother is right above me and I was always the one hanging out with the guys anyway. I’m a dude that likes to wear heels and makeup.”
Julianne, how about working with Josh?
JH: “I’d be lying if I didn’t say he was an attractive person. You see an attractive, gorgeous man and you hope there is more to him than that. He’s super intelligent and great at what he does. You wish there was something bad about him, but there’s not.”
Lasse Hallström, your director, I heard he likes for his actors to do improv. How was doing improv with Julianne?
JD: “I was like the veteran and the tables turned because [Julianne] had been working for two weeks. She was like, ‘Don’t even worry about the script. You get to say whatever you want and sort of let it flow.’ I was like, ‘What do you mean you let it flow?’ I need to follow a script.
I had never really had a director who was that trusting of me before. Lasse is an artist. He’s got this patience about him, this trust in the audience that they are going to understand it and get it. What I focused on was trying to find the humor and developing a real relationship.”
Julianne, what drew you to do the film?
JH: “The story and the characters are what drew me, and the fact that Lasse Hallström was directing. I knew that this was going to be my first role stepping outside the musical-based films that I had done. I knew that I wanted to work with a director that I could learn and grow from. I knew that he would push me in ways that I had never been pushed before. I had never done improv before. I’ve done live television, and I’ve done concerts and competitions where everything is well rehearsed.
Did you relate to your character at all?
JH: “The one thing I love about Katie is that even though she has been through some things, she’s very strong and she’s guarded and she’s a fighter. But most of the time fighters tend to be a little bit broken and have gone through things to make them that way. I definitely relate to that because a perception of who I am is kind of like happy and positive.”
Josh, I heard you talked to Julianne’s boyfriend, Ryan Seacrest, before the love scenes. Is this true?
JD: “I always thought it was funny because it was such an awkward moment. I have a lot of respect for Ryan and a lot of respect for their relationship. I guess I felt this need as a man to say, ‘Listen, I know what these movies are all about. They are very much about love and the passion of these two people.’ So, we were at this gym in Southport, North Carolina. [To Julianne] Was it Cape Fear Fitness or something?”
JH: “Yep.” [Laughs]
JD: “And he was leaving and I was like, ‘Hey, man.’ [Laughs] It was so awkward. ‘I just want you to know that you’re in love and I am in love. And we both love each other – I mean – we both respect each other’s relationships. Anyway, I respect your relationship.’ He said, ‘What are you talking about?’ ‘Don’t worry. Nothing weird is going to happen between Julianne and I.’ He said, ‘Man, it’s OK. You don’t have to say any of this.’ And it was this really awkward – I was like, ‘Yeah. What am I doing?’ [Laughs]
JH: “Yeah. But that’s what’s so endearing about Josh. He thinks about that stuff.”
JD: Well, still. It was unnecessary. You know, I guess – I don’t know. Maybe I was putting myself in his shoes. It can’t be easy.”
“Safe Haven” is playing in theaters now.