WFE ~ Fans Share Their Set Stories*

The Cross Family Farm stands in for the Jankowski Home in Water for Elephants

This page is dedicated to the very lucky WFE film enthusiasts and Rob Pattinson fans that visited the Tennessee and Georgia filming locations and shared their experiences with my film blog. Links to their story pages are below, but first a little background on the TN/GA portion of filming. Having a major motion picture shot in your ‘backyard’ is an enormous event and so many people turned out to support Director Francis Lawrence, Rob Pattinson and the rest of the cast and crew! Here is how it all began:

On July 13th, 2010 Water for Elephants wrapped filming at the Fillmore/Piru, California location and the last scene filmed was the ‘Stampede’. Director Francis Lawrence, @Hibbits, tweeted this from the set that day:  “Done shooting in the big top. Getting ready to collapse the benzini tents! Not a wrap yet… Just for this location. But still a bit sad. Okay… Collapsing our tents was probably one of the coolest things we’ve done.” WFE continued filming at various locations in and around Los Angeles and for the most part everyone thought that filming would wrap there very soon… However, that notion was about to change when word broke about a casting notice with regard to ‘casting Roustabouts and children’ for a WFE location shoot in Chattanooga, Tennessee. I contacted the ‘extra’ casting director to verify if this was true and she responded that it was indeed legitimate and that filming in and around Tennessee would begin on July 30th and end on August 4th… That is when we learned that Water for Elephants would be moving to TN/GA to shoot the last bits of the film!… Filming wrapped in Los Angeles on July 29th with this tweet from @Hibbits: “That’s a wrap for LA!!!!!!”, and the very next day he tweeted: “Day one in TN finished… Jankowski house is done! Looked beautiful.” A few days before the first day of filming in TN/GA a local Chattanooga News station (WRCB) began reporting and following the story that a major Hollywood film was about to begin shooting in Chattanooga and Chickamauga, GA. The local residents had found the location in north Georgia and began visiting the farm house on West Cove Road in Kensington, (just south of Chickamauga) that is owned by the Cross family. The farm house is located pretty much in the middle of nowhere, but people were so excited to see a bit of film history that they came from surrounding areas just to have a look and take photos.  Apparently the WFE art department had been renovating the house for the past month in preparation for filming and no one realized that it was going to be used for Water for Elephants! Word spread on the Internet that the Cross family farm house was one of the shooting locations and people traveled from many states just to, hopefully, get a glimpse of filming and even more importantly, Robert Pattinson. Quite a few people showed up at the farm house for the first day’s shoot, but the road was blocked off on either side to facilitate the film crews and also to prevent the people watching filming from accidentally getting in the way of a shot. However, this didn’t deter a few lucky film enthusiasts and they managed to get a few photos of the set and surrounding crew areas. On Monday, August 2nd, WFE moved filming to Chattanooga at a location near the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum. Over the weekend several folks visited the museum and saw the WFE art department getting the train cars ready for filming and a couple of girls were able to ride on the train as the museum was still open for regular business (they closed it on Monday and Tuesday for filming). @Hibbits tweeted this on Monday morning: “Early morning Chattanooga… Getting ready to shoot Christoph’s last scene!“, and then later that day: “One shot left for August, Walter, Blackie and Earl.” Then one last tweet about Monday’s filming: “Just picture wrapped Christoph, Mark, Scott, Ken and Queenie. Almost done…”. Filming continued on Tuesday, August 3rd, and @Hibbits tweeted that morning: “Last day… Jacob jumping the train for the first time.” Midmorning local Tennessee TV news station WRCB contacted me to help them get in touch with Francis Lawrence because they wanted to interview him for their evening news. I was more than happy to help them and through the power of Twitter I was able to message Francis and the interview was arranged. They were able to get a quick five minute video with him when filming broke for lunch and they aired it that evening. Around 9:30pm that night @Hibbits tweeted: “We have wrapped Jacob!” and “We still have three background plates to shoot tonight and then some more plates tomorrow. But principal photography is now done.” This meant that Rob had finished filming, him being the last ‘principle’ or main actor in the film. A ‘plate’ is a background or ‘scenery’ shot that will be used as a ‘cut a way’ when they edit the scenes together. Wednesday, August 4th, was their very last day of filming and late that evening Francis tweeted the final words that we all knew were coming since WFE began filming on May 20th: “Just shot what is probably our most beautiful train shot… Setting sun, reflections in the water and white steam shooting thru the trees! Down to the very last shot. Train thru a tunnel at night. Rolling the cameras…” and lastly the very poignantly: “That’s a wrap on WFE!!!!!!”… Even though Francis’ words sound so final, he’s promised to keep us informed during post production and editing on through to the film’s release and beyond… I want to personally thank all of the ladies that shared their ‘set stories’ with me and love their enthusiasm for this film and its cast… *hugs all around*

Below are the links for the Tennessee local TV news coverage of Water for Elephants and below that links to each individual ‘Set Story’ from local and out of state  WFE film/Rob enthusiasts:

WRCB (NBC affiliate) News Stories:
July 28, 2010 ~
A family in North Georgia is about to become part of movie history.”
July 29, 2010 ~
It was another day in movie paradise.”
July 29, 2010 ~
Reese Witherspoon does not have any scenes planned for the area”
July 30, 2010 ~
I am just hoping to get footage of Robert.”
July 30, 2010 ~
“Film brings local revenue, exposure”
August 3, 2010 ~
“Water for Elephants Director: It’s been a lot of fun” Click here for direct video (courtesy of WRCB)

NewsChannel9 (ABC affiliate) News Stories:
July 29, 2010 ~
Chattanooga is a wonderful place to shoot…”
August 4, 2010 ~
“Two Chattanooga Brothers Picked as Pattinson’s Sons”

WDEFNews12 (CBS affiliate):
July 30, 2010 ~ “Fans stake out Walker Co. Farm”
August 2, 2010 ~ “Couple Meet Rob Pattinson at Local Bar”

Chattanooga Times Free Press:
July 23, 2010 ~
“Crew filming Scenes Here for Hollywood Movie”
July 28, 2010 ~ ” Team Edward Fans on the Prowl”
July 30, 2010 ~ “Georgia Farm Ready for Closeup”
July 31, 2010 ~ “Fans Stake out Movie Set”
August 2, 2010 ~ “Fan Talks with Pattinson about Chattanooga”

Water for Elephants Tennessee & Georgia Set Stories:
~Hope and Debby’s Set Adventure ~
~ Nicole’s Set Adventure ~

~ Chastity’s Set Adventure ~

Question of the Day

Have you considered driving by the “Water for Elephants” movie set?


Thank you for participating in our poll. Here are the results so far:




Release date for “Water for Elephants” movie

Published on August 5, 2010 at 12:29 pm  Leave a Comment  

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s