There is a scene in “G.I. Joe” where Snake Eyes has to get across a room by walking on his fingers so he doesn’t get detected by the alarm system. It’s a crazy scene. This is where they filmed it.
In the hallway that Snake Eyes has to get across on his fingers.
Lorenzo: …so he gets up on his fingers and he goes across this thing.
This is the entranceway to the what?
Lorenzo: To the diving bell.
The diving bell.
Lorenzo: It’s sort of like we call it the gateway to the MARS headquarters.
Is Ray using a stunt double or is he doing most of or all of the stunts?
Lorenzo: He’s doing most of it. I mean, there’s so much of it that he couldn’t do it all, in part because we have the 2nd unit going, so we have a double. But Ray’s awesome.
It must be nice that he’s in costume the whole time so it’s easy to…
Lorenzo: It’s easy but Ray’s really…he wants to do every single thing himself. So normally you could have 3 or 4 Snake Eyes if you wanted to do it. It would be no problem, but Ray wants to do every single thing himself, so he does almost everything. There’s a couple times where we have no choice where we have 2 units going so we need a double going on another unit, but by and large he does 95%. I don’t know.
The size of The Pit is crazy even in person. On screen it’s even bigger as they add CG to enhance the visuals, but even on the Downey soundstage we were all impressed by how large the setup was. According to Lorenzo, The Pit was seven stories high and the level of detail was great.
Inside the Pit
Lorenzo: …and it’s blown up in the middle of it and actually there’s a great beat where Sienna-the Baroness-is standing right there and this thing gets destroyed and then they’re under attack so she slides down this thing firing away. It’s a pretty cool little moment for her character. And as you can see, these buildings are sort of non-descript. It’s where it got the name is that they’ve been practicing urban combat in here.
That’s straight out of like Issue 1 right? They descend into the pit and there’s all kinds of people practicing their moves and stuff.
Lorenzo: You know you may be right about Issue 1. I’m not sure; it’s in several of the Issues actually but in the end you’re probably right.
All of us are walking to a new section of The Pit
Lorenzo: See this is what’s happened. It’s like it’s gotten all blown up. This actually you see is a really large carpool in the actual movie. It’s a visual effect here that gives you a sense of how big it is and how big the organization is. I can’t remember whose question that was, but you’ll see a vehicle pool of…I don’t know…50 vehicles…I’m making it up but you’ll see a lot, so you’ll have a sense of a really big space between this and this. (he points to a section of The Pit we already visited) And that’s just one floor of a 7 floor… we have an underwater level, we have an administrative level, so you’ll see 3 or 4 of them. Some of them you’ll go past in the elevator.
These vehicles will be like Jeeps or actual vehicles that we’ll remember from playing with when we were kids?
Lorenzo: They’ll be a combination of things. Will you remember them from kids? No, they’re more present day I would say.
Like we’ll see a helicopter or will be see like Wild Bull’s Dragonfly?
Lorenzo: You’ll see-you might see a jet pack in here. You’ll see a lot of Jeeps. You’ll see a lot of Hummers. You’ll see…you might see some helicopters and things like that.
So do we have a time frame when this is happening? Is it 2012, 2020 when?
Lorenzo: In the near future. You know, 10-15 years from now. And one of the things we’ve tried to do is every bit of technology we use is, if not existent today, plausible sort of extensions to where we’re going.
I have to ask, this is a shot in the dark. In the comics we’ve seen Transformers and GI Joe crossover. Any chance that would ever happen?
Lorenzo: I don’t know. I find when those kinds of things happen for me, I get confused. I like to keep the mythology separate, but if that ever happened, and I doubt it would, but if that ever happened it would be way down the road.
Now you said Destro’s in the movie throughout and Cobra Commander comes on strong towards the end but where does Zartan fit in?
Lorenzo: Zartan is one of the characters-one of the group of the bad guys.
So he’s here from the beginning? He’s part of this whole attack?
Lorenzo: Yes. You do see him in the attack.
And any Drednocks?
And how are you going to do the whole Zartan face change kind of thing? Is it CGI type of stuff?
Lorenzo: You’ll see. You’ll see.
What are those right there? Is that like a giant exhaust?
Lorenzo: Yes, it’s just a giant exhaust. Most of The Pit is in the ground so you need to ventilate the air.
The next place we went to was the legitimate part of the M.A.R.S. operation. That’s the place where McCullen creates and builds his weapons and like all the rest of the “G.I. Joe” soundstage, the location was huge. We saw trucks and tons of boxes that were supposed to hold weapons. Again, great location.
Inside the legitimate part of the MARS operation. Inside the hangar where the trucks were and the missiles etc…
So this is the legitimate M.A.R.S.
Lorenzo: This is M.A.R.S. industries, if you would, this is the legitimate thing. This is at the beginning of the movie. Duke and Ripcord are not part of the Joe’s at the beginning of the movie and they’re assigned to move something from here to another place and that’s when they encounter the Baroness and some of the Viper’s and the Joe’s.
So there’s regular soldiers or whatever at that point.
Lorenzo: Special Forces.
Lorenzo: So that’s actually one of the storylines in the movie is they’re not Joe’s. Can you become a Joe? Do you want to be a Joe? And do they fit into that world?
Do they even know what the Joe’s are or is like this secret thing that comes to them?
Lorenzo: No, it’s secret. It’s secret. So in a way they’re out point of view into the Joe’s. So for the audience member who doesn’t know the comic book or the series, Duke and Ripcord are their way into that world. I mean, really you can’t make a movie like this just for the fans because there’s not enough to make it profitable, so we have to make…the balancing act of this kind of thing is you must be true to the…in my opinion…you must be true to the original aspects of the story or you’re going to alienate, I’ll call it your core fan base, but your core fan base represents–I don’t know–10% of your audience ultimately? 5%? 15%? It’s hard to measure it but I’m guessing between 5 and 15% of your audience, so you better get that 85 or 95% to understand what the movie is about, relate to the characters, etc. So, Joe-the Joe organization you meet them through Duke and Ripcord and then you have a completely…they ask the questions who are you guys? What do you do? Blah, blah, blah. How do you join, etc. so you can really follow along from that.
Lorenzo, what is that piece?
Lorenzo: That is a dismantled laser array. We can go take a look at that. It’s sort of beat up but…
Before we go there, what kind of vehicle is this?
Lorenzo: These are all Cougars right here. These three.
The final location was where Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow have their big battle. I won’t spoil what happens, but suffice it to say, it’s a solid showdown between these two great characters.
(we walk to Laser Array where the Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow battle takes place)
Lorenzo: …Storm Shadow and Snake Eyes. This is the…the base has a really big laser powered weapon on the exterior that the subs are put under great pressure from. Sort of like the “Guns of Navarrone” or something. So, Snake Eyes comes up here to turn this thing off and Storm Shadow anticipates him and they have a battle royale here.
You’ve been wanting to make a movie about Ninja’s for awhile…
Lorenzo: I love Ninjas. I do love Ninjas.
Does this kind of whet your appetite for maybe a…
Lorenzo: It sure does. I’d love to do a pure Ninja movie though.
Snake has the stuff. Let’s do it.
Lorenzo: Well, we’ve got to make sure this first one works, but if it works maybe we’ll get there. Ninja’s are fun. Who doesn’t want to be a Ninja? I think Ninja’s are wild. They’re fantastic. When I did “Last Samurai” it was one of the reasons why I got interested in “Last Samurai” was because of that Ninja scene.
I screamed like a little girl when I saw the Ninjas in that.
Lorenzo: That was awesome. That scene was awesome, wasn’t it?
Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow they have these tattoos on them. Are we going to see those?
Lorenzo: You will see some tattoos for sure. Actually, we took that idea and put it on…I don’t know if you’ve seen pictures of the Snake Eyes suit? It’s essentially on the exterior of the suit now.
So when you guys film a movie like this and there’s always the possibility of doing a sequel, do you save the sets? Are they in like long-term storage?
Lorenzo: Unfortunately it’s so expensive to store them that you never really do that and in our case we destroyed both of the bases pretty significantly so you can’t really go back.
So what happens to like the cruisers…they’re called the….
Lorenzo: Cougars. I’m guessing that we will… I actually don’t know, but usually we’ll auction them off or they just get destroyed.
And don’t think this is it for my “G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra” coverage as I have my full set report coming and more interviews with the cast. Make sure to check back for that.