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Will Ferrell Sharpens His Blades of Glory

Published March 28, 2007 in Movie News
By Fred Topel | Image property of DreamWorks Pictures.
Blades of Glory Blades of Glory

Will Ferrell usually headlines his comedies. There's a funny ensemble behind him, but it's a Will Ferrell movie. But Blades of Glory is a double header, with Ferrell and Jon Heder sharing the spotlight as an all male figure skating duo. They play off each other like old rivals in the film, but this was their first meeting.

Will Ferrell on Blades of Glory

"We met in the parking lot of Pickwick Ice Rink in Burbank," recalled Ferrell. "It was like, 'Hey, nice to meet you.' 'Yeah, you too.' 'This should be fun, right?' 'It’s going to be hard, huh?' 'You don’t know how to skate, do you?' 'No.' 'I don’t either.' 'Okay, I’ll see you later.' That was kind of it."

Though he shares the screen and top billing, Ferrell still has a trademark near-nude moment, showing off a body full of tattoos that represent his character's relationships. "I thought it was really funny that you reveal this stupid life story through tattoos. But we got to make some crazy, funny tattoos. That was amazing. And, in fact, we were just laughing that Jimmy [Heder's character] has no sense of the fact that there’s this gross guy with his shirt off. He’s just wrapped in the story, like, 'Really, wow, cool. What’s that one?'”

Like a real figure skater, Ferrell wore an elaborate costume, streaked with flames as he shoots fireballs from his hands. "Julie Weiss, who’s the wardrobe designer is kind of a mad genius, in a way. She’d be like, 'I found this leather jacket in the hatchback of my neighbor’s car. Try it on.' You’d be like, 'Oh, it’s perfect.' 'I knew it! You’re going to wear that today.' She really designed these amazing [costumes]. She would call me on the phone and ask me things like, 'What would your character keep in a duffle bag?' 'I don’t know yet. I haven’t even thought about it.' She was like, 'I see you as a cross between Steven Tyler and...' this person or that person. But, yeah, in terms of the skater stuff, she totally designed all that."

In the film's climactic action scene, Ferrell skates away for his life. But when the ice ends, the chase continues on dry land, in skates. "That was really hard. That was the first two days of filming, all of that chase and we hadn't really worked out being on those skates at all. It was like a piece of wood that was painted silver on the side so it looked like a blade but it was still only about that much thickness that we were running around on. And it was the craziest way to begin a movie I've ever [had]. You felt really beat up after those first few days of all that physical stuff, but it was fun."

Skate school was almost like a boot camp for Ferrell. "We worked with this woman, Sarah Kawahara and she's like the big time skating choreographer, to the point where some of the other coaches who were former pros, actually you could see them get nervous around her. She does all the Disney on Ice, everything. In your mind, you'd be like, 'I nailed that' and they were like, 'better. You're gonna get there. Yeah. Make sure you point your toe.' And the director would be like, 'Looks fine.' They were almost like, 'Don't tell them that.' But it was intense."

Blades of Glory opens to theatres on March 30th.

For the trailers, clips, stills and movie info, go to the Blades of Glory Movie Page.

Stay tuned for updates.

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Compiled By (Sources)
Fred Topel
Sources: Image property of DreamWorks Pictures.

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