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Here is the last post in our “Tomorrowland” series.
Written by Gayle Turner
If you’re like me and the rest of the county, you have spent some time with George Clooney in the last couple weeks seeing Disney’s Tomorrowland. “Tomorrowland” is a place for dreamers, the people that truly believe the impossible is actually possible and that we all have the power to fix it. No one believes that more than Mr. Clooney himself. But while he may play disillusioned dreamer Frank Walker in this thought provoking sci-fi action adventure fable for the entire family, nothing could be further from the truth. Last week I shared Part 1 of my interview with the man with the boyish good looks, who exudes charm and makes you feel like he’s that best friend that you’ve had forever, who does believe that every person, including himself does indeed have the power to change the future but this week it’s time to share the funny side of Clooney, the joker and prankster that you’ve heard about, with some of the insider fun that went on during the filming of Tomorrowland.
And now here’s a look at George Clooney-unscripted and uncensored:
So just what was Clooney’s favorite scene to film?
“Yeah, that’s a good question. It’s fun because, look, first let me start off by explaining to you how I came to this part, right? Brad and Damon called me and said we’ve written a part for you in a movie. And I’d been trying to work with Brad for a long time. I was like ‘Wow, that’s amazing’. And they send me the script and I open it up and the description of me is ‘A 55 year old angry, bitter, guy.’ I’m like ‘Thanks guys. Thank you so much’ But what I loved about it was that the entire film, he’s just a grump, you know. He’s just a grump through the whole thing. I loved when Britt first comes to the house. It’s really fun where it’s like ‘Shut up and who are you?’ We really had fun shooting all that stuff in the farmhouse. That was fun because all the robot guys were really sweet and nice, and not really robots, you know. And, so I think that might have been the most fun scene to shoot, all the farm house stuff.”
One of the first things you come away with from Tomorrowland is the heart-warming interaction between Clooney and Britt Robertson and Raffey Cassidy. So just how did he feel about working with these young and talented actors?
“I didn’t like them. I’ll say that… Now, we can say nice things now, but the truth is I don’t care for them (as he tried to hold in the laughter as he was making the comments) Well, first of all Britt is fantastic and her career is just at the very beginning and is going to be really fun. Raffey is spectacular and she was just 12 at the time and way too talented for her age, and sweet and funny. It was a fun part for me because I, as you well know, if you’d seen me speaking to a 12 year old the way I speak to her at say the grocery store, you’d call child services. I’m thinking ‘Who gets to yell at a 12 year old?’ But in the movies it’s so much fun because she’s not really a 12 year old. It’s fun the way they sort of set it up to where, we’re a little family of three, but she’s the adult. She’s driving the car and Britt and I are the two kids, arguing and bickering all the time.They were fantastic, and they were really sweet and I think they’re having a really fun time with this, which is, you know, that’s how it’s supposed to be. You know when I work with younger actors, I always have to try to remind them that this is the fun kind of job that most people don’t get to do. And if you get to be an actor and work, and somebody pays you for it, you’ve caught the brass ring and it’s just fun. So, that’s part of, the thing is, they really do dig it and they’re having fun, which is really a good time.”
And what of Thomas Robinson, who portrays the young Frank Walker- did Clooney have any say so who it would be? He looks so much like him, especially his facial expressions, what was the process that went into casting him?
”No, they just went around, actually they did a little plastic surgery on him… Which seems, ah, a little rough, but yeah it’s show biz. You want to be in show biz, we’re gonna have to reduce that nose. We’re gonna have to pin those ears… but seriously, he was funny. I actually would come to the set and watch him work because I never got to work with him obviously, because we were in different worlds as you know, completely different worlds, but he would walk by, I’d come over and I’d go ‘So you’re, ah, you’re me, right?’ He’s like, ‘Yup’ Alright- Don’t screw it up. He was really sweet though. A really funny kid.”
With that in mind, were there any specific scenes or memories of working with Robertson and Cassidy that stood out to Clooney?
Ever the jokester-“I don’t remember much of it. I was drunk most of the time. You know, I will tell you, there were a lot of moments, because you know, it wasn’t all done to green screen. They were nice enough to build a lot of these sets where you actually got to play in them. The most fun we had was the driving sequences, believe it or not, because, you know, we’re being towed but Raffey is actually driving and I had to teach things like you’ve got to keep looking at the road, And she’d be like (as he imitated Raffey to perfection) ‘What is the deal?’ My mother actually drives that same way, but it was fun because there was no technology. There was nothing. It was just old fashioned, three people sitting in a truck for five days, arguing and doing fun stuff. And that’s really fun for actors; because you don’t have to do any make believe. It’s all just right there and I really enjoyed that. It was also fun doing the stuff like shoving all the packs of powder down their throat because we must have done, I don’t know, 30 takes, and every time I’d say, ‘Here you go.’ (as he was laughed and demonstrated for us) and she’d be like ‘Not the whole pack’. And I was like ‘Yeah’ so much sugar in it, so much fun.
And did Britt Robertson actually drink all those bottles of Coke?
“Yeah, now in fairness, Brad was kind enough to only do it, I think, three times. But she does down two cokes in the take and I was thinking she’s gonna explode, but she did it. Because you learn with young actors they just go for it. I remember when I was doing Descendants we had this little girl who played my youngest daughter in the film, and we did a scene where she gets to eat ice cream, and she never acted in a movie before and she just starts pounding the table. And they’re just sitting there watching her going, you can see her, take 9 and she literally was like Uuugh.”
In Part 1 of my interview, Clooney spoke about how much fun it was to be 54 and still getting to play make-believe. Was there any contraption from the future, he wished he really could have?
“I just wish the jet pack really worked. When I was growing up, it was the space race and you were eating space food sticks and drinking Tang and I really thought by now we’d be riding around in Jetson cars…well, that’s what the Jetsons told us. Well, they did tell us and I believed them, so when I saw the jet pack, I’m like I want that thing to work by now but no such luck. But that is one of the futuristic items or things that would be awesome to have. Let me put it to you this way. So you’re at LAX. You get your bags. I’ve got to get to Studio City. It’s 4:30 on a Friday. It would be the greatest moment ever, just blasting right over all the traffic. I think it would be fantastic, although, you know, I don’t know that I want everybody to have one ’cause they’d just be circling my house hovering over shouting ‘What’s Amal gonna wear to the MET Ball?’ I don’t know, I don’t know if I want everybody to have a jet pack.”
So was he able to keep any of the memorabilia from the film?
“Now here’s the thing -Disney is very, ah, they’ve got like armed guards around all that stuff. And Brad is very, possessive of all those things as well and so I will not answer what I stole because they will come take it away from me, but it shoots rays and it’s a gun.”
All kidding aside, the film does have some very emotional scenes. Were there any of them that were emotionally hard for George to film?
“Emotionally hard, no. Because I find, movies in general aren’t emotional in a sense because you’re involved in them but and you know it’s not really something honestly terrible that has happened. It is still make believe but I did find that, it was a tricky scene. There’s a moment where I have to let, Raffey’s character, the robot go, and it was a really weird scene. We’d shot it once and she kind of clicks out, but her eyes are open still and we drop her out, and it literally feels like I’m murdering her. It really does. It was odd. And you’re watching it, it’s so disturbing and it was really awful, so we went back and re-did it where she sort of completely goes out, because otherwise it really felt horrible. There are all kinds of weird balances in this film. My relationship with her is very, well we’re walking a very thin line here. And it’s a constant thing of ‘Let’s walk very carefully through these things.’ And thankfully, Brad is really good at what he does. He makes it, made it much simpler.”
What’s one of the messages that Clooney hopes people will come away with from Tomorrowland?
“Every time we turn on the news and see how bleak it is, we need to take a step back and remind ourselves it doesn’t have to end that way; there’s a future out there if you get involved and become a participant. I think that maybe along the way, it would be nice to remind ourselves that there’s an awful lot of good that’s being done. The future is yours to decide what it will be.”
Thank you George Clooney for making us all believe that we can indeed change the future.
Want to learn more about Tomorrowland?
Visit the interactive Take Me To Tomorrowland Site
Like TOMORROWLAND Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DisneyTomorrowland
Follow Disney Pictures on Twitter: https://twitter.com/DisneyPictures
Visit the official TOMORROWLAND website: www.Disney.com/Tomorrowland
Don’t forget to follow #TomorrowlandEvent to stay find out all the latest
“What if there was a place, a secret place where nothing was impossible? A miraculous place where you could actually change the world- wanna go?”
Tomorrowland is now playing in theaters everywhere!
I have been invited by Disney to cover the Tomorrowland Event. All expenses have been paid for by Disney but all opinions my own.
Gayle is a lifelong educator by day and avid freelance writer by night Mom to 5, Grammy to 4 she is blessed to share her life with amazing family and friends who encourage her to chase her dreams no matter where they may lead. When not in the classroom, she can be found following her son as he dances his way through life, or working with young performers in free nationally recognized after school children’s theater program that she founded 13 years ago.
Other posts by this author:
Disneyland’s Diamond Celebration is Just Around the Corner
Tomorrowland Event Awaits MouseQuester Gayle
Disney VoluntEARS Celebrate the Teaching Garden’s First Harvest
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Lava”
Behind the Scenes of Disney/Pixar’s “Inside Out”
Movie Review – “McFarland, USA”