Interview: ‘Breaking Dawn’s’ Daniel Cudmore Details On His Character Felix And The End Of FilmingPosted: December 14, 2011
The fourth installment of the Twilight saga, Breaking Dawn: Part 1, hit theaters on Nov. 16 and the money its grossing doesn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon. The franchise is doing better than ever and its not even the end yet. So don’t you worry trihards. Bella Thorne has turned into a vampire and there’s so much more action to look forward to. Especially when it comes to the Volturi. I got the chance to chat with actor Daniel Cudmore recently, who plays Felix in the films. He began working on New Moon and will be featured a lot more in Part II when it comes out in 2012. Some of his other credits include playing Colossus in X-Menand acting in the highly anticipated The Baytown Disco.
Daniel was great to talk to because he seemed very appreciative of the opportunity he was given with these films. He detailed on everything from his audition process, how the cast celebrated Rob Pattinson’s birthday in Vancouver, what his favorite moments on the film were and what the last day on set was like. I mean really, he was the complete opposite of his character on screen. But that was to be expected.
You grew up in Vancouver. How was it filming the Twilight series in your own area?
DANIEL CUDMORE: It was really cool. Everyone’s going back to their hotel and I’m going back to my apartment, and everything’s comfortable and my friends and family are here. A lot of the cast would be like, “Where’s a good place to go here and where’s a good place to go there?” So I felt like a tour guide at the same time. Super comfortable. It’s a great atmosphere to be able to go home and be in your own bed. Until I started filming out of country I didn’t realize how good I had it to film in my own town.
It definitely must be nice to be away from the L.A. scene on a film. As an actor it must help to concentrate on the material.
Yeah! It was a lot of fun. Spending time outside of work is always kind of cool.
That must have been so nice. What was the audition process like? How did you land the role of Felix?
I was auditioning for a character that was trying to pick Bella up outside a bar. I looked at the character; he just looked like fun and a pseudo wannabe tough guy and I just went in there and had fun with it. Later I got a call, not thinking anything of it. I didn’t think I was right for the part. So I got a call back still thinking it was for the same character, not knowing it was actually for Felix. When I showed up for this call back they were like, ‘Have you prepped anything for the vampire…for this character?” And I was like, “I don’t know what you’re talking about.” [Laughs] So I’m like oh God, and they throw me some lines and I had five minutes to rehearse. The casting director, I know him he’s a great guy, he ran the lines with me for two or three minutes and then we went in there and put it on tape. I felt kind of bad about it because I felt it was so rushed so I did a tape the next day. I filmed it on my own and sent it to my agent and he sent it along to the casting directors. So I don’t know which tape actually went through but out of the two I guess I did something right. [Laughs]
That’s awesome! Meant to be. Now I spoke to Chaske Spencer [Sam] recently about workouts he and the wolf pack had to undergo. Even though you played a vampire, did you take part in any of that?
No, it was great because the past films I’ve worked on I’ve got no shirt on and I’ve been through that whole thing. But luckily our wardrobe was big, beautiful coats and stuff like that, which weren’t the best when it came to hot weather but it was definitely one of those things where I wasn’t those guys complaining about going to the gym and getting their butts kicked so it was nice for me. I mean I worked out on my own, to get a physicality and a feel for character and that sort of aggressive, animal side. So I did work out on my own but I didn’t have to go to the boot camps like those guys.
Was there any friendly wolf vs. vampire rivalries? There are some diehard fans out there that probably have their favorites.
Yeah! There probably would be more of that if we filmed more together. All the personalities colliding would be pretty funny! The way that we filmed was so separate; we never got a big chance to interact with those guys on set especially since our characters don’t really meet up, but I can only imagine what would happen if all those personalities got together.
[Laughs] Well, is there anyone specific that you grew close to on set?
It was tough because the thing with filming is that we were in separate groups so at the beginning I was really close to Charlie Bewley (Demetri). We’d hang out a lot and run ideas off each other. I found later on in filming, especially the stuff more recent when we all got to hang out with each other, the guys from the wolf pack and some of the guys from the new covens that come out in Breaking Dawn II, it was sort of an evolution. But it was weird, because we didn’t know of anyone else until premieres or after parties.
What was it like working with Dakota Fanning?
It’s funny, you look at her resume and it looks like the resume of a 40 year old and then you realize she’s only 17, but you’ve grown up watching her on TV. In my mind I’m still thinking she’s 9 or 10 years old. It was fun just to be on set and chat with her and see how wise beyond her years she is and how down to earth and how really cool her and her family is. It was cool to meet them and chat with them.
What was one of your favorite moments with the cast during your downtime?
In New Moon, going to the restaurants around here. I remember Rob was celebrating his birthday. We went to a restaurant here and during filming I didn’t really get a grand scope of the madness surrounding it–when it came to all the press. So going to a restaurant and having paparazzi standing outside the restaurant was a really strange thing for me to witness. The great thing is no one had any clue who I was, so I could just slide on through. [Laughs]
People can probably spot you out! Well besides Felix, what other character would you have liked to play?
I always thought one of the wolves would be fun. Not so much having to work out everyday or running around with a shirt off and being all painted but I think it would just be fun. The characters just seem like they’re having a blast, running around, ripping their clothes off.
Totally true! Being a part of such a franchise in general must have been exciting. Is there a particular book in the series you enjoyed the most?
I think Eclipse. It was so much darker. I felt it was a darker part of the books. It was cool. It was a firm departure from the first two when it was really about their relationship and the blossoming of their relationship. It was a cool book to read.
What was a favorite scene you acted in?
I would say New Moon is my favorite just because being able to go to Italy and film in Italy. [Laughs] The authenticity of being in these ancient buildings and pseudo castles and walking down these corridors that have been around for hundreds of years. That was a really cool experience for me. Don’t get be wrong, the set designs were beautiful on set but you can’t duplicate the feel.
Absolutely. That must have been amazing! How long were you there for?
We were there for about a week and it was funny because some of the cast was staying in one spot. It was kind of hidden just to stay away from the paparazzi and stuff like that, and then a couple of us were in another hotel. It was kind of strange [kind of] Miami feeling. It was this hotel in the Italian countryside, a town full of older sleepy folk. So we spent a lot of time on our days off popping in a car and taking off to the other hotel and hanging out and drinking wine and relaxing. It was a great experience. One of those ones where you realize you are extremely spoiled.
And now it’s all over! At least the filming is. What was the last day on set like? Was it weird how it all had come to a close?
Yeah, it was strange. I mean you’re go-go-go for three years. I kind of explain it like being inside a fish bowl and you don’t realize what you’ve been a part of until you step away. So the last day was kind of surreal. You know that it’s over but it wasn’t really kicking in. It was just another day at work, another film. I usually don’t get too caught up in the ending of a film because I’m excited to see what’s next but definitely looking back in retrospect, it was an incredible ride. It was pretty incredible and just a luck opportunity of me to enjoy.
It really is crazy to think that the films and premieres will all be over soon. How did you feel about how they ended Breaking Dawn: Part I with [spoiler alert] her eyes opening?
I kind of liked it. At the end of the day it was very suspenseful, and everyone gets all excited and wants to see what she’s like as a new vampire. Now to get everything wrapped up in part II. I liked it. I thought it was a lot of fun and obviously the little end piece was great. I wasn’t sure if I was going to be in it when I was watching the whole thing and then having that little piece at the end at the credits was cool too. But yeah, I enjoyed it!
What do you think audiences will really like about Part II in 2012?
There’s a lot of build up from part one. You really start to feel what could possibly happen with everything that’s going on and the threat of the Volturi finding out. What are they going to do about it? What’s going on with the wolf pack now that it’s split? I think it’s all come to a head right at the very end, which is a great place to be. Without giving anything away–a lot of build up and a lot of anger, you see it all come to fruition at the end.
Can’t wait to see it. How would you sum up your overall experience working on the films?
An enjoyable ride that has taken me places that I never thought it would. That has opened up doors I’ve tried to knock down for a while.