Scene Stealer: Working with 'Frozen's' wolves
Scene Stealer is a recurring Calendar feature looking at the tricks and techniques used by Hollywood's behind-the-scenes armies of make-up people, visual-effects folks, costumers, cinematographers and stunt coordinators. This week's installment focuses on "Frozen," which recently premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and opened in L.A. theaters last week. The lo-fi horror movie, which has been compared to "Paranormal Activity," features three friends who become trapped on a ski lift after the mountain shuts down.
The cast and crew of director Adam Green's thriller had to contend with the real-world forces of nature, but perhaps the most unpredictable were the wolves that actor Kevin Zegers had to confront for a pivotal scene early in the film.
“We put Kevin inside an electric fence with the wolves,” Green explained. “As long as the trainers were outside the fence with the food, the wolves would ignore the actor and go for the food.”
Unfortunately, the wolves had a habit of standing in the way of the actors when Green was trying to get a shot. “Finally, just as I got the shot, Shadow, the really scary all-black wolf, turned and went after Kevin,” Green said. “He slowly walked up and sniffed Kevin and started growling. I threw up in my mouth and swallowed it.”
Zegers, who had considered himself a natural with animals after his lead role in “Air Bud,” had enough. “He was buried to his waist in snow and he turned and said, ‘Get me out of here.’” The crew pulled him out immediately. Air Bud, it seems, is no match for a hungry wolf.
-- Patrick Kevin Day
Photo credit: Anchor Bay Films