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UPDATE: Universal has gotten in touch to clarify that, as I suggested, the reshoots Decker is speaking of were built into the regular production schedule, and all is according to plan as the production moves between shooting locations in Baton Rouge, Hawaii and San Diego. And the "alternate endings" she spoke of were different takes on specific planned scenes, not different scenes entirely. Read the below article with all of that in mind.
I've been learning, as have a lot of other people who follow the movie industry I think, not to automatically see reshoots as a sign of disaster. They can happen for all kinds of reasons, from accommodating actor schedules to fixing continuity errors to, yes, large-scale changes to the story that may well not work out. So the news at Moviehole that Peter Berg's Battleship will be undergoing reshoots is no surprise-- it's a huge movie after all, and a risky one for Universal as they try to turn the board game into its own franchise. But the fact that they shot a bunch of alternate endings? Now that's not a great sign.
The news comes from Brooklyn Decker, the supermodel-turned-actress who was in Australia to cheer on her tennis player husband Andy Roddick at a tournament and decided to chat with Moviehole while she was there. Here's what she had to say regarding alternate endings and the possible reasons for the reshoots:
“We will do reshoots. We have shot a bunch of alternate endings. There’s a lot of CGI to be done – a lot of stuff in post. Depending on the storyline and where they want to take it we might be doing some reshoots."
Again, the reshoots sound pretty par for the course, but what's this about alternate endings? Were they trying to shoot a few options in order to keep people off the scent of the actual ending? Or were they really not sure how they wanted the movie to end, so they shot the whole thing vaguely enough that they could slap it together in post? That's the scenario I'm most afraid of, and even if they're going into reshoots to tighten up whatever ending they decided on, it could indicate some poor decision-making, or lack thereof. I can't help but remember the reports from earlier this summer that Universal came close to pulling the plug on the film, and wonder if some creative chaos in there was also to blame.
Given that all of this information is coming from a young starlet who's likely not in on the higher level meetings, expect denials from Universal and Berg if they get wind of the story. With all this "he-said, she-said" vague information we're likely to never get the truth of the matter, but we'll see for ourselves when Battleship roars toward us May 18, 2012.