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Interview with Ian Ziering, Tara Reid,
Vivica A. Fox and Anthony C. Ferrante from "Sharknado 2" on Syfy
Moderator: Gary Morgenstein
July 22, 2014
1:00 pm CT
Operator: Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for standing by
and welcome to the Sharknado 2 press call. During the
presentation all participants will be in a listen-only mode.
Afterwards we will conduct a question-and-answer session. At
that time, if you have a question, please press star then 1
on your telephone keypad. If you would like to withdraw your
question press the pound key.
As a reminder, this call is being recorded Tuesday, July 22.
I would now like to turn the conference over to Gary
Morgenstein. Please go ahead, sir.
Gary Morgenstein: Welcome everyone and next Wednesday, July
30 at 9:00 pm Syfy is proud to premier Sharknado 2: The
Second One. Enough said. To discuss the movie we have stars,
Ian Ziering, Tara Reid, Vivica A. Fox and director Anthony
C. Ferrante. Thank you everyone for joining us.
Gary Morgenstein: Operator, could you put forward the first
press call, please?
Operator: Your lines are open.
Gary Morgenstein: Yes, Operator, could you put forward the
first press call?
Operator: Okay, in order to ask a question please press star
then 1. Your first question comes from Jamie Ruby.
Jamie Ruby: Hi, thanks for doing the call, guys.
Vivica Fox: Youíre welcome, no problem.
Jamie Ruby: So you guys use a lot of blood and guts and
other things like that in this movie. Can you talk about
kind of working with that and the green screen and all those
kind of things?
Tara Reid: I think definitely it wasnít - I think when
people see the sharks they think thereís a lot more green
screen than there really was. There really wasnít too much
green screen at all in the film. Itís more of a - you know,
CGI different special effects but not really green screen.
So if you were acting with sharks that were coming at you
but nothing was coming at you but you were still, like,
outside in the city and - you know, it wasnít like you were
acting behind a green screen.
So it was just, you know, filling in the blanks and kind of
believing in the director that he promises sharks, so you
react to the sharks as well as youíre imagination could make
Vivica Fox: And I also like to give credit to our director,
Anthony, because he was very descriptive in what was
happening and what kind of sharks were coming at us.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Well, and Ian had some green screen
stuff, but Taraís right; most of itís practical. When we get
into the green screen it gets into the more complicated
stuff like when Ianís flying to the sky and everything. Man,
Ian is an action star. You put him in that harness and heís
there for, like, I think an hour just doing acrobatic
I had to do some pick up stuff last year where I was a
double and I was in the harness for, like, 20 minutes and I
was, like, in pain. So a lot of kudos to Ian for managing
those harness rigs.
Ian Ziering: Thanks, Anthony. You know, working in a virtual
environment where at first as an actor youíre really doing
something that in the instant feels like an action but once
you see the completed movie itís actually a reaction.
So whatís nice is when you have a director who can help tell
the story, help illuminate whatís happening around you so
you can have trust in the fact that whatever youíre doing is
not going to be ridiculous, your actions are going to be
substantiated because it all gets filled in afterwards. Itís
all about having the trust.
Tara Reid: Yes, absolutely.
Anthony C. Ferrante: And there were some instances that too
- on this movie, like, the first movie was a big learning
curve for everybody and while everything worked out and
while it all looked great, you know, we learned a lot off of
that first movie.
And then you watch everybody in this one, you know, Ian was
just doing things, you know, like Iím going to move my foot
here and then they can put a shark jumping up at me when Iím
on top of the taxi cab. And thatís what we didówe put a
So itís - after going through the motions of this stuff you
really start understanding, you know, what can be done. And
we have a pretty amazing visual effects team. We shot late
February and we just delivered it a few weeks ago. They did
over 700 visual effects shots and that was in less than two
And thereís some pretty damn impressive shots in this film.
So you know, they do a lot of work to make this stuff happen
and to payoff all the hard word the actors did on set.
Jamie Ruby: Great, well, I really enjoyed it. I thought it
was fun. Although weíre missing the last couple minutes of
the movie cut out, I donít know why. But what I saw I really
liked. It was a lot of fun.
Vivica Fox: Great, glad you enjoyed it.
Jamie Ruby: Thanks.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of Robin
Robin Burks: Hi everyone, thank you for talking to us today.
Robin Burks: When you went in to do the first Sharknado
movie did you have any idea it was going to become this
massive pop culture event? And why do you think it has
resonated with so many people?
Tara Reid: I mean we definitely didnít know it was going to
become what happened. It was definitely shocking for all of
us. We had no clue signing on to the movie that this would
be this phenomenon. So you know, it was - a great and kind
of shocking experience.
And it turned into something wonderful. Now to be a part of
the franchise has been incredible. But yes, we definitely,
we didnít know - we got real lucky.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Itís hard with these things. You never
- you know, you just try to make the best project possible
and, you know, what happened on this thing - you know, itís
lightening in a bottle. We didnít tell people to show up and
make it a Twitter phenomenon. It just happened. And thatís
kind of cool.
You know, you get those - you very rarely get those
opportunities like that where people just want to embrace
you just because youíre there. And that was kind of - it was
kind of special. And helped because now we got to make a
second movie and we got to make a bigger and better movie
after that. So itís fun.
Robin Burks: What can we expect from the second movie?
Tara Reid: More sharks.
Vivica Fox: Lots of action.
Robin Burks: Besides more sharks.
Vivica Fox: A lot of cameos, a lot of cameos. I mean I was
really pleasantly surprised how many people wanted to be a
part of this film when they saw it. Itís like, famous faces
just keep popping up. And itís just an awesome surprise.
Anthony C. Ferrante: I think the key with the second movie
is we want them to - we wanted to kind of amp up what we did
- we already did a lot in the first movie for the budget and
the schedule. I mean thatís the - I think one of the reasons
why it stood out just because we were pushing the budget and
the schedule the maximum.
And so we pretty much had the same kind of schedule in this
one and we were trying to do twice as much as pushing as we
did on the first one. So it - itís a lot of heavy lifting to
kind of make these things look fantastic and donít have a -
you know, we donít have a $200 million budget to pull it
But we have a lot of the imagination from our writers under
Levin, from our cast and from our crew and producers and
Syfy to let us play in this playground.
One of the best things that Syfy said - there were actually
two great things they said when we were developing. One,
they started saying, well, weíre set it in summer but any
weird weather when you're shooting in February make it part
of the story, which liberated us. So we didnít have to go,
we have to hide the snow. And that really adds to the look
and feel of the movie.
The second thing is - is that, they said we want you to
shoot this movie in New York, shoot it in New York. We donít
want you to go to Canada. We donít want you shoot in the
back lots in LA. We want to shoot in New York. And I think
that - that makes this movie look gargantuan and it feels
authentic. And I think thatís what makes this one really
special because weíre right there in the thick of New York.
Tara Reid: And I think New York City has its own personality
itself. So adding the personality of New York into this film
really added a magical, you know, element into the film.
Robin Burks: Great, thank you.
Vivica Fox: You're welcome.
Operator: Your next question comes from Pattye Grippo.
Pattye Grippo: Hi guys, thanks for talking with us today.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Sure.
Vivica Fox: Youíre welcome.
Pattye Grippo: So let me ask you, a couple minutes ago you
mentioned the celebrity cameos that are in this film. Can
you name a few of them?
Vivica Fox: Sure, we had Matt Lauer, gosh, Kelly Ripa,
Michael Strahan, and lots more that you have to stay tuned
Anthony C. Ferrante: Judah Friedlander was one of the people
that did the - was one of the big Twitter followers that
night whoís from 30 Rock and he was writing some really
We kind of became friends with him and he really wanted to
be in the second movie and heís one of - he actually was
only hired for one line in Sharknado 2 and I called Judah up
and going, I donít want to waste you with one line. If we
can give you a bigger part would you do it? Heís like, of
So we actually - we combined three characters at the
ballpark into one character so we could keep him around a
little longer in the movie. But a lot of the film was we
would get calls, like, the night before going, this actorís
available, letís put him in the movie. And like, okay. And
then suddenly you're writing something for that actor.
And so it - I keep calling these movies living organisms
because, you know, you have a script but you go on the set
and itís, like, you know, things are changing or you donít
have this truck or you donít have that and you have to kind
of make it work.
You donít have - you canít pawn off not getting what you did
that day on Day 70 because you donít have a Day 70. So itís
always - here we are, this is what we got, letís make some
And that includes we have a new actor that showed up and we
donít have a part, letís write a part for them because I
always wanted the cameos to be integrated into the film, not
just be somebody random that gets killed. Not that we donít
do that, but I wanted as much as possible to give all these
Pattye Grippo: Makes sense. This is for all of you guys, let
me ask you, in the first film you put a shark pretty much
everywhere you could think of. So for this film, where else
can you put a shark?
Tara Reid: I mean they could go anywhere. Sharknado is, you
know, wherever it comes. So they could go anywhere from
inside hospitals to the Met Stadiums to subways to the
street to you name it, a shark could be there. The Empire
Anthony C. Ferrante: I think the misnomer about Sharknado is
people get hung up on the fact that sharks canít exist in a
tornado and tornados canít do what they do and all that
stuff. And the simple explanation on our end is that itís a
Sharknado; itís like our Frankenstein, our Freddy Krueger,
You know, you donít question Jason getting his, you know,
neck chopped off half a million times and then getting shot
and getting back up again and all that stuff, thatís part of
the mythology. And so I think the thing that weíve expected
is that the Sharknado is our villain and it does what we
tell it to do.
So you know, if it shoots through a car window, yes, a shark
canít do that but a Sharknado can. So it gives - that opens
up the imagination of what you can do and we were able to do
a lot of crazy stuff because we were freed by the fact that
we could do anything.
Pattye Grippo: Okay, well, thank you guys very much.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of Jamie
Jamie Steinberg: Hi everyone, thanks for taking your time
today. I was wondering if you each could talk about if you
added anything to your characters that may not have
originally been scripted for you.
Tara Reid: I think that everyone added a certain aspect to
their character. I mean thatís what makes characters good,
an actor kind of adds their thing on top of it. But we all
had a very good rapport with Anthony and there was something
that we thought was missing, a character, something that we
could add on to the character we found that place, which was
exciting. So I think every character got to go farther and
took risks and, you know, youíll see it. It worked.
Jamie Steinberg: And Vivica...
Anthony C. Ferrante: We also softened your character, didnít
we? We softened Taraís character in this a lot too because
we wanted to see the relationship between you and Fin.
Tara Reid: Yes, thatís true.
Jamie Steinberg: And Vivica, what was it that - about the
film that made you want to be a part of it?
Vivica Fox: Well, you know, I was saying, wow, I need a
little bit of Syfy in my life and action. And wham, there
came Sharknado 2. I was really presently surprised when I
got the offer to play Skye. I hadnít worked with Ian since
back in the day with 90210 and Tara, we had known each other
for many, many years.
So the opportunity to work with both of them and hearing the
major success of the first Sharknado it just seemed like a
win-win situation for me.
Anthony C. Ferrante: We also changed the character a lot
when you came on board and I was so thrilled when you came
on board because we were allowed to do an idea that we had
early on of making the Skye character Finís high school
Because we were trying to show this reuniting of Fin and
April but we wanted an obstacle and, man, you guys sold that
as such a - it was really - it was a blessing to have you on
that film because it just gave us so much more depth.
And those little moments and the things that you guys did -
you know, in the middle of the Sharknado - doing things that
you donít expect someone to do in Sharknado 2.
I just love that, I love that dynamic because at the heart
at it if you donít care about these characters everything
starts falling apart. So we had a really nice mix with
Jamie Steinberg: And Anthony, talk about what do you think
it is about Sharknado thatís made it such a popular
Anthony C. Ferrante: You know, thereís a lot of theories
about it but I think that a lot of genre movies - and Iíve
done a lot of them as a director, writer, you know, theyíre
just horror films you have, you have a base audience. You
know thereís a certain amount of people that are going to
watch them whether itís DVD, on Syfy, BluRay, on demand,
whatever. Thereís that core audience that will seek this
We had a core audience for this movie but somehow the
mainstream became attracted to it. We had the sports
community embracing us and we really didnít have any sports
elements in the first movie. We had families getting
together, watching it with their kids. We did not set out to
make a kid movie but there are a lot of kids that love this
film because it had sort of that 11-year-old spirit.
So I think what happened was that itís just - there was
something silly about the title and it seemed ridiculous but
when you saw the trailer it was - it looks like the big
studio movie or trying to be. And so I think people were -
wanted - we were daring them to watch it to see if we could
fail and yet we kept delivering every ten minutes with some
big action set piece.
So I think it was - I think it was a lot of different
things. We just got a lot of different people. Itís a
bipartisan movie, the left and right both embraced movie.
There is nothing that anybody could pick apart in it and
they just liked it.
So you canít - itís so hard to get something like this and
you canít really take it apart and say it was this or that.
Itís just, you know, we somehow - we were this fun little
film that people didnít have to spend $50 million - $50 at a
movie theater to go take their family to.
They get to watch it in the privacy of their home and they
had a blast. They made fun of it. They loved it. They hated
it. I mean it was just - it was great.
Jamie Steinberg: Thank you guys so much for your time.
Vivica Fox: You're welcome.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Youíre welcome.
Tara Reid: Youíre welcome.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of Josh
Josh Maloni: Thank you. My question is for Ian and for Tara.
And Ian, maybe you can start. When you have a movie that is
successful, special like Sharknado was, sometimes actors
will be, you know, reluctant to do a sequel. Did you guys
have any second thoughts or were you on board from the get
Ian Ziering: I was on board right from the get go. You know,
whatís so nice about Sharknado is that it really is not
competing with itself and the bar that it set initially is
not - you know, one of - you know, thatís unattainable. This
was a low budget independent film, you know, a very campy
So really the only way to screw it up would be to change it.
And the brilliance of Sharknado 2 is the fact that itís more
of the same. Itís a similar formula but itís a different
experience, similar situation in a new environment. And if
people liked one theyíre going to love two.
Josh Maloni: And Tara?
Tara Reid: I agree with Ian exactly. I mean I - he couldnít
have said it better. You know, when I read the first one and
went out to dinner that night with my friends, I told them I
thought the script was hilarious. I was - yes, sharks are
flying in Beverly Hills and maiming people and jumping out
And my friends are laughing so hard. Theyíre like, are you
kidding me? This is amazing, youíll have to do this. So itís
so funny, you have to do it. So the next day I called my
agent and Iím like, all right, letís do it.
And never knowing it would become the phenomenon it did but,
you know, it worked. You know, people really enjoyed it. And
then we learned from the first one and I think made it even
Josh Maloni: What did the two of you like about working with
Tara Reid: I love working with Ian. Heís very giving actor.
You know, if somethingís not working he makes it work. I
like him as a person and as an actor.
Ian Ziering: I was very lucky to work with just a talented
group. Tara, you know, everyday showed up. We got all the
shots we needed to have and had all the fun that was
possible working in the constraints. Vivica, another
You know, we knew we had to get our shots everyday and we
did but, you know, because everyone knew what we were up
against everyone came very prepared and very, you know,
ready to do the work.
And that left us at the end of some days with some extra
time that it would allow Anthony to get some bonus footage,
to get some shots that really were gifts. So itís great. You
know, when youíre working with people that understand that,
you know, time is money and this film we didnít have a lot
So because everyone is very professional, everyone came
prepared, and we actually - you know, made it happen.
Josh Maloni: Great, thanks guys.
Vivica Fox: You're welcome.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of Mike
Mike Hughes: Ian, I saw it at the screening they had at the
Beverly Hills a few days ago, you really seem to enjoy
yourself when youíre there. And it was such a - I was
wondering, such a odd situation to be showing a film, shark
film, next to a swimming pool with people who have never
seen it before. Can you kind of describe your experience
that night? What did it feel like to you as you were
Ian Ziering: I felt like I was at a big Hollywood premier,
you know. Itís kind of a surreal experience and keep in mind
that this is a TV movie. And the rollout has been in the
same fashion that, you know, hundred million dollar
blockbusters are brought to market.
The fan response - not just here in the United States but
globally has been so overwhelming that this movie is doing
something that - you know, the major motion picture studios
try to accomplish. But we caught lightening in a bottle and
that premier was the first time I saw the entire movie cut
So because Iím a fan of the genre, because Iím a fan of the
movie, you know, I enjoyed it too. I laughed at it as much
as everyone else did. I was surprised and shocked just like
everyone else was and then at the end of the film I was
really happy because itís a really good movie.
Mike Hughes: Cool, I was going to ask you one other thing,
you get to do action hero things that people donít usually
get to do. You get to have chainsaws and all kinds of things
to fight these sharks with. Was that just plain fun to be
able to do the kind of stuff you ordinarily wouldnít get to
Ian Ziering: Yes.
Vivica Fox: Absolutely.
Ian Ziering: Iíve always been a big fan of action-adventure
and Syfy. And the fact that Iíve gotten to play an action
hero in a science-fiction movie is really the best of both
worlds. Iím a very lucky person.
Mike Hughes: Cool, thanks.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of David
David Martindale: Hi, thank you. Iím calling from Dallas,
which is the heart of Sharknado alley. My question for
Anthony, what was the genesis of Sharknado for you to begin
with? Did it start with the title? Does it start somewhere
else and you stumbled on to the title?
Anthony C. Ferrante: It - actually Iíve written a - I
directed previously for Syfy and Iíve written a bunch of
scripts and thereís a process for writing - for pitching
ideas. And (Jacob Haren) and I, my occasional writing
partner, we had pitched a whole bunch of titles to them many
years ago, one of them was Sharknado. Nothing happened with
it but I - you know, we both loved the title so much, just
kind of tickled us.
So when I wrote a leprechaun script for Syfy, it was called
Leprechaunís Revenge and now I think on DVD itís called Red
Clover, I put a reference to a Sharknado in there. They were
trying to cover up the leprechaun stuff and they go, we
donít want to have whatís happened that town over, remember,
Sharknado, they never lived that down.
And the Syfy team, like - they just - it just popped out at
that point to them and they wanted to make a Sharknado movie
and they paired up with the Asylum and I had just done a
film for Asylum called Hansel and Gretel and then it came
full circle where I was doing Sharknado.
I mean I always believed in this concept. I thought - you
know, I liked the title a lot because it just - it was silly
but, you know, you would tell people the title and they
would just start laughing. You just start coming up with
ridiculous things. And so that was the genesis. And then
Thunder came in and wrote a really great screen play and
then the rest is history.
So though - just so you know, we started shooting the movie
- whatís called Dark Skies because when they tried to go out
to cast film and everything, when they put Sharknado on it
nobody wanted to do it. You couldnít get anybody interested
in this film because it was just - no one - no one could
embrace what it was initially.
And then of course, the actors were about ready to kill me
when they found out that it might be called Sharknado. But
they love me now, right?
Ian Ziering: Exactly.
Tara Reid: Yes, now itís all good.
David Martindale: Okay, and a question for Ian, I barely
remembered this, youíre telling a story about signing up for
the original movie. You got a feeling about it but because
your wife said you needed to work to be sure that you had
insurance coverage. Is this a true story? And if so...
Ian Ziering: Thatís an absolutely true story. You know, you
really - you always look for opportunities that will propel
your career and, you know what, I didnít have the vision and
foresight to see what the potential of this movie could be.
I was reading words on a page that had - you know, several
holes in it that were left to be filled by visual effects.
And typically what youíre working with within a low budget
environment are very rudimentary visual effects. I wasnít
sure if I was going to be dealing with a high level of
visual effects. Was I going to be battling (Sigmund) the sea
monster? Is this going to be closer to the Avatar level of
And you know, I really just didnít think that it was going
to be what it had turned out to be. But my - at my wifeís
behest she said, look, you know, itís January, youíve got to
make your insurance quota. I get my insurance from the union
and having babies are very expensive.
And of course, I want to protect my family, Iím a provider
now. So I realized, well, you know what, sheís right. And I
thought I was taking one for the team. But then I also
thought, well, what the heck, no oneís ever going to see
this movie. Boy was I wrong. And my wife doesnít hesitate to
say I told you so now. Itís great.
David Martindale: Thank you so much.
Ian Ziering: Sure.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of Mike
Mike Gencarelli: Hi guys, thanks for taking some time. Iím
from New York - New York City and thereís a character in its
own. Was there any kind of - you know, did you guys see the
city actually kind of became a character itself during
Anthony C. Ferrante: Yes, you mean New York itself?
Gary Morgenstein: It would help if you address your
questions to specific people. I think that would help us a
Anthony C. Ferrante: Yes.
Mike Gencarelli: Sure, I guess Anthony, if you want to grab
Anthony C. Ferrante: Youíre talking about New York becoming
a character? Is that what you're asking? Yes, no, I mean
definitely. I mean Iím not a New Yorker. I think Tara and
Ian are from New York, correct?
Tara Reid: New Jersey but I went to high school in New York.
Ian Ziering: Yes, Iíve lived so close to New York and going
there everyday, yes.
Tara Reid: I mean it was great. It was like a really fun
feeling to shoot at home basically. Like, for me, all my
friends still live there. I have so many memories on each
one of the streets because I still walked going to school.
So for me shooting that was just - it was such an awesome
feeling. It was great. The power of shooting in New York
City is like - itís such a strong city and it does have such
a personality of its own.
And I really think that it adds such an element to this film
and I think when you watch the movie youíll really see the
power of New York City and what the cityís about and how the
people really come together when something goes wrong in the
city to come together to save it. And I think that shows
across the film.
Anthony C. Ferrante: I think that was kind of one of the
things in the first movie - at least in my head was that Los
Angeles everybody kind of is in it for themselves and, you
know, disaster strikes, we got to get our cars and get out
In New York, itís like when the crap hits the fan itís like
everybody - you know, weíre brothers in arms. I donít like
my neighbor but, you know, together weíre going to fight
whatever this thing is.
Thunderís from New York so he had brought a lot of iconic
graphic stuff but as we were there we started going, you
know what, we got to do this. Like, there was never a pizza
place in the movie. There was never a bodega and I had never
heard the word bodega until I ended up in New York.
I go - we got to put a pizza place, we got to put a bodega
in. So the sequence that was a hardware store, we split it
between those two places. We ended up shooting at my
favorite pizza place that - when I was there in New York for
two months. I just loved this place. Itís called Famous
Amadeus Pizza. And we shot there.
And that whole scene was - with getting the shark into the
oven came from just standing in that restaurant going, we
got to do this. So there was a lot of stuff informing us as
we were there and it started evolving, you know, utilizing,
you know, the various aspects of New York.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of John
John Soltes: Hi guys, thank you so much for the time today.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Youíre welcome.
John Soltes: I was wondering, from an acting perspective,
obviously the film has a lot of humor in it. Do you guys
sort of play it seriously in your mind and trying to sort of
be this character or do you sort of - are very conscious of
some of the lines that are sort of coming out that sort of -
definitely will get some laughs from the audience? Do you
sort of play it serious or take a laugh with it?
Vivica Fox: I definitely played my character serious and
then I think, like, in the moments and what were fighting
against and the elements, then the comedy ensued. So I took
it very serious that, you know, a Sharknado was coming and
we were there to stop it.
Tara Reid: Yes, I mean I think we all had to take, you know
- even though the situation seems so crazy. But you had to
play it serious because if you didnít - if we were playing
it laughing the whole time then the storyline wouldnít even
make sense. Itís by taking it serious in such an absurd
crazy, you know, environment and thatís where the jokes come
in, thatís where it gets funny.
So I think you really do have to commit to your character,
you know, and also know what youíre playing and being in
that situation that youíre in and playing it serious then
there comes the humor. So I think thatís really what you -
you know, a lot of people did.
Anthony C. Ferrante: And I think one of the other tricks
with this movie and thereís a lot of horror films that will
be just purposely campy and over the top but, you know,
every - I think the key actually to this whole franchise is
having everybody playing it straight.
I mean Ian has some very funny moments in the movie and
lines but theyíre character driven, theyíre reactionary. The
only people that are allowed to be funny are your comic
relief characters, which are like, Judah Friedland. But even
then they ground it. Itís not, ĎIím making a joke.í
We still - that was one of the things when weíd get new
people coming in for cameos. A couple times they would come
in and theyíd be over the top when we were rehearsing. And
weíd be like, no, no, no, it has to be played straight.
You can be as funny as you want but you have to be in
character and take the situation seriously. And I think
thatís part of the charm. I mean Ian, you kind of agree,
Ian Ziering: Absolutely, even though the situations are
absurd, you know, in the reality of the imaginary
circumstances if you will, you know, you say and do things
that - you know, are appropriate for the actions or the
But as a spectator, as an observer, you realize how funny
they are within that situation. But when youíre dealing with
it, you know, you have to act naturally in imaginary
But as a spectator you realize that, you know, you get to
enjoy the fun of it because youíre a witness. Youíre not
there experiencing it. So in that dichotomy, thatís where
really the joy of the movie exists because you have to
suspend this believe to buy into what youíre doing but yet
you still have you foot in the real world so it gives you
perspective of how absurd this movie really is.
Anthony C. Ferrante: I think a perfect example of what Ian
did in the first movie when he chainsawed his way out of the
shark thereís two ways that could have went. You could have
went the Jim Carey route where itís like, Iím laughing it
up. Or you do what he did which was literally committing
that he just was inside of a shark and that inherently makes
it funnier because itís so earnest that itís - and itís so
in the moment.
And I think thatís one of the charms about why people
remember that sequence because - you know, Ian - it was the
coldest day of the year in LA, which is hard to believe that
we had a cold day. And a lot of - we dumped, like, 20
gallons of water on him. Heís freezing to death. He did. It
was great. It was awesome.
John Soltes: Thank you very much.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Remember all those towels and then
water - we had to pour on you right away after.
Ian Ziering: Brutal.
Tara Reid: Thatís horrible.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of (Karen
Karen Butler: Hello.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Hello.
Tara Reid: Hi.
Vivica Fox: Hi.
Karen Butler: Did all the fan and media attention change
the way you approached or viewed your jobs going into the
sequel? And also, what was the vibe on the set like the
second time around?
Tara Reid: I donít think the media - it was exciting that
the first one was such a hit but I donít think that changed
how we performed or affected us any way like that. We were
hoping to make another good fun film that people would
But yes, the vibe on the set was great. I mean we got lucky,
everyone truly got along in the movie and had a great time
with each other. And I think that shows.
Vivica Fox: The only element that was kind of crazy was just
that it was really, really cold and there were sometimes you
would be doing the scene and - boy, I just could not -
getting out the dialog could be a little tough. But we would
just go warm up and then go back at it again.
Karen Butler: And did you all feel a responsibility to a
fan base that didnít exist the first time around?
Vivica Fox: Absolutely, yes. I mean when I heard about the
success of the movie - 5,000 tweets a minute - I mean the
first time, I was like, wow, okay, people are really, really
loving this. And theyíre going to be looking forward to the
second one. So we wanted to deliver and make it bigger and
Anthony C. Ferrante: And I think the hard part was - go
Karen Butler: I just wanted to see if you had anything to
Ian Ziering: Yes, you know, in making Sharknado 2 there was
a certain - there was a greater amount of ease about it
because where I didnít have the experience of what was
possible, you know, after seeing what they were able to
accomplish - what the visual effects artists were able to
accomplish, what Anthony was able to do with the script, you
know, going into Sharknado 2 I had a higher level of trust.
So it was a bit more framing and enabled me to not have to
worry about - gosh, am I going to look ridiculous doing
You know, I would do it no matter what but I had a greater
amount of trust knowing that, you know, Anthony is
completely capable, knowing that the visual effects artists
are going to make all my actions substantiated by whatever
shark it is that Iím being threatened by to make what
initially was an action into a very realistic reaction. So I
had a lot more fun because I wasnít ill at ease.
Anthony C. Ferrante: I think there are people - go ahead. Go
Karen Butler: Do you feel more pressure the second time?
Anthony C. Ferrante: I feel more what?
Karen Butler: Pressure because so many...
Anthony C. Ferrante: I keep not hearing the last words.
Tara Reid: She said, did you feel more pressure the second
Karen Butler: Thank you.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Yes, no, I think thereís a pressure
just as a filmmaker. I mean Iím hard on myself, you know, I
beat myself up everyday trying to pull this stuff off. So I
mean thereís a pressure, itís more on - you know, I want -
you canít go into the second one and just be okay. You have
to be better than okay. You have to be good, great, whatever
you can do to make a better experience.
I think the benefit of what we did on this one is that we
didnít have, like, three years in between making the movie.
I mean we literally blew up in July, started talking about
the sequel in August, and the script was being developed,
and we were shooting in February.
So you know we were still kind of - at least saying it felt
like weíre still making the first movie. But there was other
things too, you know. We wanted to - one of the things that
bothered me about the first movie was the geography. You
know, I wanted to make sure if we were in New York that we
were steadfast with the geography.
You know, we have a lot of discussions about the Sharknado
moment and I kept saying, I donít think weíll ever be able
to achieve what we did in the first movie with it going into
the shark, that was lightening in a bottle. But we could
provide a whole bunch of other really cool moments.
So if we can come up with ten or 12 great moments maybe one
of those will stand out and weíll be lucky and some of those
will be the new Sharknado moments. Or maybe thereís just
enough stuff in this that they wonít even question it, they
just have fun.
So itís a tricky balance but I did - you know, again, we had
more confidence going into this that we could take chances
and risks and do things.
Another thing that Syfy and Asylum wanted to do is - they
have a 12 minute teaser. Most teasers for Syfy and Asylum
are about two and three minutes long. And it was in the
script long and then when we turned in the rough cut it was
long. And then let us have this 12 minute teaser before we
even get to the main credits.
And that was the trust that they gave us and let us kind of
- you know, play - have fun in our little playground. So I
think our biggest enemies are ourselves because we want to
do bigger and better and greater things. And so weíre always
kind of striving for that but I had a blast making the
movie. I loved it.
Karen Butler: Itís so much fun to watch too so thank you
Anthony C. Ferrante: Youíre welcome.
Ian Ziering: Thank you.
Tara Reid: Thank you.
Vivica Fox: You're welcome.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of (Tiffany
Tiffany Benbio: Hi guys. This goes out to the three
actors. How do you prepare both physically and emotionally
to actually battle a Sharknado in New York?
Ian Ziering: Well, you have to put yourself in that
imaginary circumstance. I mean if youíre going to have a
compelling performance you have to act naturally in that
So you know, although there is no sense memory, thereís
really no way to get in touch with it, thatís where you have
to have trust and draw on all the experiences that youíve
had as an actor and all the training youíve had that you're
bringing to the table to accomplish that.
You know again, itís working with the team of people that
you have around you, Tara, and Vivica, and Mark who all
helped elevate the material to the point where, you know, no
oneís questioning the validity of it while theyíre watching
it, which it helps you escape.
So you know, thatís how you prepare. You do the best you can
but when youíre working with others that are towing the rope
with you it just makes your job that much easier.
Tiffany Benbio: It seems pretty physical though. You
didnít have to do any training ahead of time just to prepare
that you werenít getting hurt? Or was it strictly just -
like stunt double or anything like that?
Ian Ziering: I wish there was...
Anthony C. Ferrante: Ian doesnít have a stunt double.
Ian Ziering: Itís only because there was no money in the
budget for a stunt double. You know, it really wasnít too
crazy. I mean jumping down a few stairs or - you know, the
toughest thing was dealing with that chainsaw. It must have
been a 45 pound chain saw.
And you know, rather than swinging it through the air, you
know, I would steady it and let the sharks fly through it
this time because the thing is just - itís a monster. But
then also, you know, having to pull the chain start on it,
you know, thatís not easy to do either, to turn that sucker
over took a lot. You know, I had to keep that going.
So it was - you know, dealing with the chainsaw was a bit of
a challenge but, you know, we did it a couple of times and
we took the best shot and moved on.
Anthony C. Ferrante: That whole thing with them on the fire
truck was - you know, I was a little nervous because it was
really cold so before I even let Ian get up there I climbed
up there to see if it was steady and I brought the chainsaw
up to see if it was even - if he could hold it up.
And I could barely hold the thing up. Again, props to Ian
for being - managing to be on top of that thing, give a
great speech, and then also hold that up for a long enough
time for us to get a great shot. Thereís a lot of stamina
involved in that.
Tiffany Benbio: Absolutely. All right, awesome, thank you.
Ian Ziering: Youíre welcome.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of Simon
Simon Applebaum: Yes, hi, Simon Applebaum from Tomorrow We
Televise, the radio/TV simulcast that covers television and
blog talk radio and broker independent media.
Got two questions and Vivica, Iíll start with you, for a lot
of people your introduction to them was Independence Day,
which is also famous science fiction, fantasy, disaster
film. Have you felt that Sharknado in a way was like a blast
from the past?
Vivica Fox: Definitely the physicality. I mean instead of
this time running from aliens I was running from sharks and
- or trying to kill a shark. So - like I said, I wanted to
get some Syfy and some action back into my life again and I
got Sharknado 2 and be careful what you asked for because I
definitely got it. But I had a blast making this film.
Simon Applebaum: And Anthony, Anthony was on our show last
year. And thanks again, weíd love to have you back. Anthony,
what was it like filming in New York? I know weíve had a lot
of questions about New York, whether New York landmarks or
cameos are going to get shark bait if you will.
But Iím curious your thoughts about shooting in New York,
especially, A, that it was on a tight schedule; B, that it
was in February; and C, at the time Mayor De Blasio did not
have a commissioner in place for film and television so you
had to sort of - I donít know, Iím curious to how that fit
Anthony C. Ferrante: I wasnít aware of the commissioner
thing. You know, the thing for me - I mean one, everybody
hated me on set because I enjoyed the cold and because, you
know - the day I left for New York it was, like, 85 degrees
in Los Angeles. This was in January and I was wearing shorts
and I went to New York and it was freezing and I loved every
minute of it except for one day.
So I loved the bad weather. First movie we were shooting in
blue skies and so most of the movie youíre shooting the
camera down and youíre trying to hide things otherwise
thereíd be more visual effects shots. And that was very
frustrating as a filmmaker because you're always - you know,
we got to shoot this direction, we got to do that, we canít
And in New York, I was able to take the camera and point it
up and shoot all these beautiful buildings and shoot, you
know, this amazing city. And Iím...
Vivica Fox: Go ahead.
Anthony C. Ferrante: And you know, I fell in love with the
city there. You know, Los Angeles, Iíve shot a few movies
here but I havenít really spent a lot of time in New York
and havenít shot anything prior to this in New York. So
every day it was like I was a kid in the candy store.
It was like tinker toys, you know, got - we got to shoot at
Liberty Island. We got to shoot in Time Square. We got to
shoot all around the city. Now on a normal movie you might
have, you know, 100 days. We had 18 so, you know, on the
last few shootings we had two hours of Liberty Island, you
know, an hour on the ferries going over there. We shot at
We shot a bike chase. We shot a scene from Howard Stern. We
shot a make up effect and that was a 12-hour day, you know.
We were told that we could shoot in the heart of Time Square
but you can only have, like, a crew of eight. And you only
had two hours.
And most people would go, no, I canít do that. And weíre
like, okay, great, weíre going to shoot in the heart of Time
Square, letís do it. We donít really think about the
limitations. We embraced it and made it work. And that was
the fun part about shooting in New York is that we had a
great crew too. There was a crew that was with us.
Even though we were moving at, like, an insane pace they
were with us and that goes with the cast. You canít make
these movies unless everybodyís on the same page. The moment
someone isnít on the same page it all falls apart.
And I just had a - I had a great experience in New York. I
loved everybody that we worked with and I know that thatís -
everybody says that but it was fantastic. Iíd love to shoot
in New York again.
Simon Applebaum: And did you have a lot of people in the
different communities come out and see you, watch you film?
Anthony C. Ferrante: Yes, that was the different - that was
the thing that we were talking about the difference. We had
paparazzi everywhere. No one cared we were making the first
movie. This one, you had to shoot around the paparazzi and
Simon Applebaum: thank you all very much and good luck with
the premier next Wednesday.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Thank you.
Tara Reid: Thank you.
Vivica Fox: Thank you.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of (Jay
Jay Handleman: Hi everybody, thank you for your time. a
couple of questions, one, for the actors, if you - was there
some way you could describe how you prepared to react to the
sharks as you encountered them the first time, either in the
original or for Vivica in this movie?
Tara Reid: I think - you know, in the very beginning we
didnít know exactly what the sharks would look like and how
good the special effects were going to be. So it was a lot
You really just had to trust Anthony that these sharks were
going to be there and the size of the shark and how itís
coming at you so you werenít really sure. Am I looking at
the right place? Am I doing it right? Is it a big shark? Is
it a little shark?
And then once we saw the first one and what a great job they
did it really gave you all the faith to just trust him
completely in the second one. And you really see the
difference and a lot more sharks and it works.
Jay Handleman: Okay. Ian or Vivica, do you have any
thoughts on that?
Vivica Fox: Can you repeat that one more time for me?
Jay Handleman: Did you - how did you prepare or how did
you first react to the sharks when you're in a scene and
youíre supposed to be being attacked or encountering them
for the first time? I mean how do you prepare as an actor
for something like that?
Vivica Fox: Well, you know, I had done some green screens
before with Independence Day. Then I had done a lot of
training when I did Kill Bill. So the action stuff for me
wasnít difficult at all and I was just really, really
grateful that I started working with Ian and he was, like,
so into it.
So he was - it was really easy to see. Heís taking this
serious, weíre doing this serious. And then the director,
Anthony, was just so wonderful and descriptive in what was
going on and what kind of sharks were attacking us and the
elements. So that helped me out a lot.
Jay Handleman: Okay.
Ian Ziering: Just, you know, working in a virtual
environment where there really is nothing there. You really
have to trust in the director, you know, and Anthony was the
one that, you know, set up the situation, donít worry, this
looks like just a couple bumps on a green screen log but
these are actually going to be sharks that youíre going to
be stepping on the backs of as you run across the street.
You know, in the first movie I would have had a little
trepidation in doing that but seeing what they did in the
first one, having an opportunity to do this - jumping on the
backs of sharks in the second one, well, we did it once, we
did it twice, and I said, Anthony, let me have a little fun
So in the third and fourth takes Iím, like, jumping and
spinning and, you know, thereís one where I actually did a
handspring off of one of the rocks. We didnít use it in the
movie but, you know, I had total trust in what was happening
knowing that whatever action that I was giving forth was
going to make - be made to look as a very realistic and
Jay Handleman: Right. And Anthony, Iím curious with the
reaction, particularly on Twitter of the first movie. Did
any of the comments that people were posting or tweeting
have any impact on how this second film developed, the story
line you took, or ideas that you may have put into it?
Anthony C. Ferrante: Not necessarily. I think a lot of stuff
actually came out when we did a lot of interviews with
people. You know, people would go, what do you want to see
in the next movie and you would come up with some, like,
totally ridiculous thing.
The whole - what I call the towering sharkfurno thing where
you have the water below and the fire on top of the building
and they meet in the middle, that was - I think I was
talking to a radio - someone on the radio about that. It was
like, we could do this and then it suddenly is in the movie.
You know, and I - you know, a lot of this stuff came from
just talking with people about crazy ideas. Wouldnít it be
funny if this and that. But the Twitter followers, I looked
- no one really thought at that moment, even when it was
blowing up that there was going to be a sequel.
You know, we just thought - we just thought it was kind of a
fluky thing. You know in this business itís like you get
your 15 minutes and itís up and Sharknado just kept going
and going. You know, we aired and then we aired again and
got better ratings and got better ratings and went
theatrical and went international.
So we just kept talking about it and thatís - that was kind
of the cool part. But, you know, I think the good thing that
happened with the Twitter is that we got validity from a lot
of different people, even if they were making fun or poking
fun at us, you know, everybody had a good time. So it shows
that there was a bigger audience watching what weíre doing.
So there is an obligation and you couldnít just do the
Sharknado 1 over again. You really did need to amp it up and
make bigger and better and greater sequences. I think that
emboldened us and allowed us more freedom to kind of push
things a little further than we could have in the first
I mean we definitely pushed the maximum but in the second
movie - I mean we go for broke a lot of times. That last 15
minutes of the movie - I could never image selling that to
anybody on the first film.
Jay Handleman: Right, all right, thanks very much,
Tara Reid: Youíre welcome.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of (Michael
Michael Chipenal: Hi guys, thanks for being here today.
Tara Reid: Youíre welcome.
Michael Chipenal: I just wanted to ask, Sharknado 2 and
its predecessor, theyíre obviously highly campy movies. And
Ian had kind of hinted on this earlier, were any of you -
did any of you have any misgivings about participating in
the film with such a preposterous storyline? Did it, you
know, that it might hurt your career afterwards?
Tara Reid: Not at all, not at all. I thought it was a
wonderful opportunity. The audience has really embraced it,
loved it, and theyíre looking forward to the sequel. I
didnít think of it as career suicide or anything like that.
I looked at it as a wonderful opportunity to work with a
great cast and awesome director.
Michael Chipenal: Great, thank you very much.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of (Ally
Ally Space: Hi guys.
Tara Reid: Hi, darling.
Ally Space: So do you think that there would have been a
sequel to Sharknado if there wasnít social media involved?
Tara Reid: No, probably not. I mean social media is really
what took it to the next level of social media with Twitter
and getting 5,000 tweets per minute and then just kind of
exploded. So because of social media it really advanced it
and took it to a worldwide level that we just werenít
expecting. So it had a huge impact on the film.
Anthony C. Ferrante: I think Asylum might have done
something. They might have done a sequel but it wouldnít
have been on this scale if it didnít blow up. They have the
(Megashark) franchise and theyíll - if they have a little
bit of a following on these things theyíll do sequels but I
donít think it would have been on this grand scale.
I think they would have - it would have been, you know,
Sharknado, you know, Goes to the Beach or something, you
know, and that would have been the second movie. But this
gave us a different platform because it was a big deal. So
we could do more and we could push it.
Ally Space: Did you guys learn anything about sharks from
Anthony C. Ferrante: No, we learned a lot about
Ian Ziering: I think youíre thinking - youíre asking the
really deep questions and this is not a deep movie. This is
a movie that - just enjoy to know youíre going to have an
hour and a half of just pure entertainment and have fun. If
youíre going to ask the deep questions then you know what,
you should see The Notebook because this is not like that.
Tara Reid: Yes, I mean itís definitely not something that -
you know, that weíre studying in the - weíre going scuba
diving and swimming with sharks or anything like that. Itís
more of the imagination of imaginary sharks being there. And
this, you know, responding to them. But itís not - we donít
get into details. Itís not like National Geographic or
Ally Space: All right.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Yes, I mean it's - thereís not much,
you know, research you can do because thereís no such thing
as a Sharknado except in our films. So you know, you do look
at - like I went and - there was a Las Vegas exhibit with
sharks that I went to before the first Sharknado because I
just wanted to watch sharks move and everything. But I
didnít do much research on the second one. I think we pretty
much knew we threw all logic out the window.
Ally Space: Thanks for answering.
Operator: Your next question comes from the line of Jamie
Jamie Ruby: Hi again, so I have a silly question for all of
you. Whatís your favorite shark kill out of both of the
Tara Reid: Wow, I mean - mineís is Ianís.
Ian Ziering: Yes, I like the shark kills most where I anchor
myself to the ground and allow the sharks to literally pass
through the blade. You know, thatís something that I did in
the first movie where it was completely unrehearsed and
Anthony has us running through a parking lot.
He says, okay, I need you to jump around and thereís going
to be sharks flying out of the sky so leap and jump and
dodge sharks flying.
And I didnít know what to expect but knowing that they would
probably paint in the appropriate reaction thereís one
moment where I just got on one knee and I raised the
chainsaw into the air and they, you know, hit it out of the
park. They had a shark fly through that.
In the second one, working with a chainsaw that is 45
pounds, you know, swinging a chainsaw through the air is a
little bit more challenging. So when I stood on top of the
fire truck knowing that there was a shark flying at me I
thought this would be another great opportunity.
But this time I did it backwards. And Anthony says, what the
hell are you doing? It looks so phallic. But when we painted
the shark in itís such a beautiful kill. It really is.
Anthony C. Ferrante: It is a fantastic moment. Yes, we
called if the phallic shot. Wow, it was great. They did -
that was one of the - thatís probably one of my favorite
kills in this movie that - the animator, (Dennis) who did
it, just - he originally did one pass on that where it was
just kind of similar to the first movie and he got obsessed
with the anatomy of a shark.
And he found a half shark, like a plastic one that showed
the full anatomy. And he used that as his inspiration so you
get that really clean thing. And he just made a beautiful
moment out of that.
Thank you, Ian and (Dennis).
Ian Ziering: You know what I just teed it up, heís the one
who hit it out of the park.
Jamie Ruby: Vivica, Tara, do you have a favorite?
Tara Reid: I mean I just think so many - I think really, the
best kill of sharks is Ianís. I mean he has the strength and
he just - he really gets them good. I mean heís awesome at
it. And with the chainsaw, I mean it doesnít get really any
Anthony C. Ferrante: You get cheers for that moment that -
when you get your moment this time. There was cheers for
that. So you...
Tara Reid: Thatís true. I have a good kill in this time too.
Ian Ziering: The girls really step up. I mean Tara gets her
own saw blade to wield and she takes out a shark really very
valiantly. And then on top of the Bells Tower Vivicaís
character pulls out a sword and slices one in half and itís
- you know, the women become very heroic. Give them the
right tools and they - theyíre bad asses.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Yes, no head trimmers for Tara this
Jamie Ruby: Seems like they were a lot of fun so thanks.
Gary Morgenstein: And thank you everyone, thatís all the
time. I want to thank Ian, Tara, Vivica, and Anthony for
joining us and all of you for being on the line to talk to
Tara Reid: Youíre welcome.
Gary Morgenstein: See you Wednesday. Thank you all. Weíll
see you at ComicCon.
Tara Reid: You got it.
Vivica Fox: Bye-bye.
Gary Morgenstein: thanks everyone, take care.
Tara Reid: All right, bye.
Anthony C. Ferrante: Bye-bye.
Operator: This concludes todayís conference. You may now
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