As revealed in my previous interview with Kristen Bell, the forthcoming whale-rescue drama “Big Miracle” originally contained a love-triangle subplot between the characters played by Bell (as ambitious news reporter Jill Jerard), Drew Barrymore (as Greenpeace activist Rachel Kramer) and John Krasinski (as small-town reporter Adam Carlson) that was later significantly toned down once it was decided the film contained too many plot strands.
Nevertheless, I couldn’t help but follow up on that little morsel of info when I sat down with Barrymore and Krasinski later in the day, with Krasinski addressing it by pointing out that while the romantic triangle was, indeed, largely dropped, Bell’s character still serves a pivotal role in the story for other reasons.
“Kristen’s character…was an option that [my character] thought he wanted, which I still think comes across in the movie, but more on the ambition side…the fact that he really wanted to be doing what she was doing and sort of achieve greatness with her in the news world,” he said. “But the relationship never sort of came around that Kristen and i were actually together [romantically].”
As for Barrymore, I made a point of asking her about filming the beautifully-shot underwater scene in which her character (who is based on former Alaska Greenpeace director Cindy Lowry) dives beneath the Alaskan ice to swim with the three trapped gray whales who become the focus of an international rescue effort. At one point, the actress (who didn’t actually dive with real whales for the scene, in case you were wondering) is required to emote her feelings through a massive pair of goggles using only her eyes – a feat made easier thanks to the help of a few new friends.
“Luckily i got to swim with some seals at one point…actually while we were filming that [scene], and they were in the tank with me up in Alaska,” said Barrymore. “So I was in heaven cause i was with like a bunch of beautiful rescued seals. I just think that if you’re thinking about what this story is, the empathy just sort of bubbles up inside of you, and if anything I just thought, maybe don’t overdo it because you’re trying to compensate for goggles.”
You can check out the full interview above, in which – among other tidbits – Krasinski spills on his admiration for the remarkably tacky ’80s fashions worn in the film by co-star Kristen Bell.
“Big Miracle” hits theaters this Friday.
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