- Title: SOUTH AFRICA: SHOOTING FOR "TARZAN AND JANE" BEGINS
- Date: 14th May 1997
- Summary: BETHLEHEM, ORANGE FREE STATE, SOUTH AFRICA (MAY 14, 1997) (RTV - ACCESS ALL) VARIOUS OF LOST CITY SET WITH FILM CREW ON STEPS CASPER VAN DIEN (TARZAN) ON SET CLAPPER BOARD FOR "TARZAN AND JANE" VARIOUS OF SCENE BEING SHOT SHOWING TARZAN RUNNING UP LOST CITY STEPS WITH HUNTERS PERSUING HIM VAN DIEN ( SOUNDBITE ENGLISH ) SAYING NOT BAD HUH? SLIGHT JOG JANE MARCH (JANE) STANDING PANTING AFTER HER RUN VAN DIEN (SOUNDBITE ENGLISH ) SAYING I'M MORE OF AN INTELLECTUAL TARZAN, IT STICKS CLOSELY TO EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS' HOW HE WROTE TARZAN ORIGINALLY, HE WROTE HIM AS SOMEBODY WHO WAS NOT JUST BIG AND STRONG AND DUMB LIKE A LOT OF THE TARZAN'S LIKE YOU TARZAN ME JANE, IF YOU WANT TO SURVIVE IN THE JUNGLE YOU HAVE TO BE STRONG IN MIND AND IN SPIRIT SO IT'S SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST MARSH (SOUNDBITE ENGLISH ) SAYING THE FILM'S SET IN 1913 SO IT'S A PERIOD PIECE. I THINK SHE'S A VERY 90'S WOMAN WITH VERY PRESENT DAY SENSIBILITIES. SHE'S SEXY, SHE'S TOUGH. AND THIS WHOLE ADVENTURE IS AN EYE OPENER FOR HER SHE CERTAINLY CHANGES THROUGH THIS AND BECOMES TOUGHER. SHE'S ALWAYS HAD A SENSE OF EXCITEMENT ABOUT HER SCENE BEING SHOT IN WHICH TARZAN RUNS UP STEPS AND SHOUTS BEFORE FIRING AN ARROW STEVEN WADDINGTON (RAVENS) (SOUNDBITE ENGLISH ) SAYING FANTASTIC, FANTASTIC YEAH IT'S A BEAUTIFUL COUNTRY, I WORKED HERE BEFORE BUT IN A VERY DIFFERENT PART - THE KALAHARI - I'M JUST AMAZED HOW DIFFERENT THE COUNTRYSIDES ARE HERE - BEAUTIFUL BEAUTIFUL VIEWS HERE, THE CREW...PROBABLY SEE THEM IN THE BACKGROUND NOW...THAT'S TARZAN WAITING FOR HIS DINNER HE'S VERY HUNGRY ... SHOT THE DIRECTOR WITH A BOW...WHAT WAS I SAYING? ( VARIOUS OF EXTRAS DRESSED AS NATIVES SEATED BY TENTS FILM PRODUCER MICHAEL LAKE (SOUNDBITE ENGLISH ) SAYING THIS PROJECT WE'VE HAD IN DEVELOPMENT FOR A LONG TIME AND WE ALWAYS THOUGHT SOUTH AFRICA WOULD BE THE IDEAL PLACE TO FILM HERE. THERE WERE THREE COMPONENTS WE NEEDED FOR THE FILM TO WORK. ONE WAS LOCATION, TWO WAS THE NATIVE POPULATION AND THREE WERE ANIMALS. ALL THOSE THINGS CAN BE FOUND HERE IN SOUTH AFRICA VAN DIEN (SOUNDBITE ENGLISH ) SAYING THE LITTLE CHIMP BIT ME ON THE CHIN. SHE HAS A SCENE WHERE SHE'S SUPPOSED TO KISS ME AND GO DOWN. SO WE WERE JUST DOING A LITTLE PHOTO SHOOT WITH HER, SHE WAS UP FOR THE KISS AND SHE WENT...HHHRP...AND CLAMPED ONTO MY CHIN AND CLIMBED UP A TREE AND EVERYBODY COULDN'T GET HER BACK DOWN FOR A WHILE, THEN SHE CAME BACK DOWN AND GAVE ME A KISS AND WAS REALLY NICE TO ME AFTERWARDS. BUT THAT'S THE PROBLEM WITH ANIMALS, THEY ARE UNPREDICTIBLE PRODUCTION DESIGNER HERBERT PINDLE (SOUNDBITE ENGLISH ) SAYING THE SCRIPTWRITER CAN ONLY WRITE SO MUCH AND THEN HE'S GOT TO LEAVE IT UP TO SOMEONE ELSE TO COME UP WITH IDEAS WITH THE SETS. THERE ARE GUIDELINES. HERE IS THE LOST CITY OF OPAR SO, WHAT IS THE LOST CITY OF OPAR? SO I START DOING RESEARCH ON BUILDINGS AND ANCIENT CITIES AND TAKE BITS AND PIECES AND PUT THEM TOGETHER AND BINGO YEAH YOU'VE GOT IT SCENE IN WHICH RAVENS AND HIS MEN CHASE TARZAN INTO THE LOST CITY WADDINGTON (SOUNDBITE ENGLISH ) SAYING I'VE BEEN HAVING A GREAT TIME, I THINK THE BADDIES, THE VILLIANS ARE ALWAYS THE BETTER PARTS MORE INTERESTING JOURNEY FOR THE ACTOR TO TAKE. THE HERO PARTS ARE USUALLY VERY STRAIGHT FORWARD. I'VE JUST DONE A HERO PART IN ENGLAND, IVANHOE AND LOOKING BACK IT WASN'T HALF AS INTERESTING AS THE VILLIAN IN THAT, IT'S JUST INTERESTING TO PLAY A BADDIE, GET AWAY WITH MUCH MORE (ENGLISH) VAN DIEN (SOUNDBITE ENGLISH ) SAYING I'VE HAD A LOT OF FUN DOWN HERE. I ENJOY IT AND I LOOK FORWARD TO COMING BACK AND I'LL CATCH YOU GUYS IN A FEW
- Embargoed: 29th May 1997 13:00
- Location: BETHLEHEM, ORANGE FREE STATE, SOUTH AFRICA/ FILM LOCATIONS
- Country: South Africa
- Reuters ID: LVADBZ31GJOO20W5O1HPGG2OUN5B
- Story Text: One of Films' most famous couples, Tarzan and Jane, are back again for a new film which is being made deep in the South African countryside.
But audiences are in for a surprise as the filmmakers are hoping to rise above the chest-beating loin-cloth image of Tarzan and have given the couple a revamped image - with an athletic new-world Tarzan and a "90's woman" Jane.
Casper Van Dien described his role as an 'intellectual Tarzan' which sticks more closely to the character Edgar Rice Burroughs created in 1914.
British actress Jane March - who plays Jane - said her character was a 90's woman who is both sexy and tough.
There's not a jungle in sight on the set for the lost city of Opar, where much of the filming was being done on Wednesday (May 14).
The huge set thrusts out from the barran veld, throwing a huge rock outcrop nearby into sharp contrast.
In the scene being shot, Tarzan - played by Casper Van Dien - is being chased up the temple's long flight of stairs.
The actors in this scene aren't worried so much about forgetting their lines as keeping up with the rest of the cast as they run up the huge staircase under the hot South African sun.
The film's post-Greystoke story centres on Tarzan's return to Africa to save his homeland from greedy mercenaries trying to uncover the secret of the lost city of Opar.
Lord Greystoke, his life as Tarzan behind him, has reluctantly settled into the confines of rigid English society and prepares to marry his love, Jane.
One night, before the wedding, Greystoke has a vision of his village in flames. He returns to Africa to rescue his family and the city of Opar the evil Ravens and his gang.
Once again, Tarzan battles his way through the jungle, rivers and valleys in an attempt to defeat Ravens. Meanwhile, Jane arrives in an attempt to discover what pulled Greystoke back to Africa and is captured by Ravens.
Tarzan comes to her rescue and together they explore his African domain.
The film's producers saw South Africa as perfect for filming because of its wide range of landscapes.
'Tarzan and Jane' producer Michael Lake said South Africa held the three components necessary for making the film - location, native population and animals.
The Jungle scenes are being filmed on the east coast near Port Edward and the Lost City sequences in Bethlehem near Lesotho. Other scenes will be filmed in Johannesburg and Oribi Gorge.
As for the animals, Van Dien has been having some unnerving experiences during filming. During one scene with Tarzan's best friend - the chimp - the animal bit him on the chin! Directed by Carl Schenkel (Knight Moves), the movie stars van Dien, hot off the set of 'Starship Troopers' and Jane March who starred in 'The Lover' and 'Colour of Night'.
The evil Ravens is portrayed by Steve Waddington who had roles in 'The Last of the Mohicans' and 'Ivanhoe'.
The movie, with its predominatly South African secondary cast, is being filmed in nine weeks.
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