An Island Adventure

TFK chats with Journey 2: The Mysterious Island costars Josh Hutcherson and Vanessa Hudgens

Feb 10, 2012 | By Kelli Plasket
© 2012 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC.

Who’s up for another adventure? Josh Hutcherson is! The actor returns to his role as young explorer Sean Anderson in the follow-up to 2008’s Journey to the Center of the Earth. In Journey 2: The Mysterious Island, Sean searches for a hidden island, where his grandfather, Alexander, (Michael Caine) may be stranded. Sean receives a coded message from Alexander and uses it to figure out the island’s coordinates. Soon, he and his stepfather, Hank (Dwayne Johnson), set off to the South Pacific to try to find the lost land. Helicopter pilot Gabato (Luis Guzmán) and his daughter Kailani (Vanessa Hudgens) join them on the journey. Strange creatures, majestic landscapes and more await them on the island. But when the time comes, will they be able to escape?

TFK spoke to Josh Hutcherson and Vanessa Hudgens about Journey 2, which opens in theaters on February 10. The movie is also playing in IMAX 3-D. Read what Josh has to say about returning to his role. Then, scroll down to read a Q&A with Vanessa about the cast’s adventures while filming in Hawaii.

 


 

A Chat with Josh Hutcherson

TFK:

You filmed Journey to the Center of the Earth a few years ago. What was different about the experience this time around?

JOSH HUTCHERSON:

We shot [Journey 2] in Hawaii, which was much more exotic and tropical than Montreal, Canada, [where we filmed the first movie]. It was really fun. I was really excited when they talked about who the new cast was going to be. It’s very different and a sort of random mix of people that you wouldn’t expect to see in a movie, between Michael Caine and Dwayne Johnson and Luis Guzmán and Vanessa and me.

TFK:

How has your character, Sean, changed since the first movie?

JOSH:

He’s grown up a lot, like me. I think he still has that crazy, adventurous bone in his body, but he’s more mature and smart about it. He’s not just doing it from a place of, “I’m young and crazy and want to go on something adventurous.” He really wants to be an explorer and find something that no one has before.

TFK:

Do you consider yourself an explorer?

JOSH:

Very much so, yes. When I was a little kid you couldn’t get me inside the house, ever. I was always outside running around, making up worlds, playing imaginary games. I still do that, except I get paid.

TFK:

What adventures does Sean go on in Journey 2?

JOSH:

Oh boy. The journey to the Mysterious Island itself is quite an adventure. They go in a helicopter that gets a little dangerous at a couple points. Then, Sean gets chased by a giant lizard, we discover Atlantis, we have to dive down to get to a 200-year-old submarine that we hope works, so we can get off the island before it sinks… There’s some exciting stuff going on, for sure.

TFK:

Did you have a favorite scene to shoot?

JOSH:

I loved doing the running-from-a-lizard scene. I play a lot of sports, so for me to be able to do a scene where I’m running and diving and jumping over things was kind of like my own little sport.

TFK:

Journey to the Center of the Earth was one of the first movies filmed in digital 3-D. Would you say the 3-D looks even better this time around?

Kailani (Vanessa Hudgens) isn't impressed by Sean's (Josh Hutcherson) adventurous ways in Journey 2: The Mysterious Island. He gets them stranded on a sinking island.
© 2012 WARNER BROS. ENTERTAINMENT INC.
Kailani (Vanessa Hudgens) isn't impressed by Sean's (Josh Hutcherson) adventurous ways in Journey 2: The Mysterious Island. He gets them stranded on a sinking island.

JOSH:

For sure. The technology itself has advanced so much over the last four years that the things we can do with the cameras are incredible. We can take them under water. We can put them on the back of these rigs and have them run through the forest with us. In the first Journey, it was very stationary. The cameras couldn’t do a whole lot. So to see how far the technologies come over the years makes for a much more [immersive] experience because you can really get in there with the cameras.

TFK:

Dwayne Johnson revealed that he could really sing in this movie. Do you also have a hidden singing voice?

JOSH:

No, I wish! I love to sing, and I do it all the time, but I’m absolutely awful at it.

TFK:

You’ve filmed in all these fantasy worlds from literature—Bridge to Terabithia, the Journey movies and next, The Hunger Games. Are there any other fantasy worlds that you would like to explore in a movie?

JOSH:

I’d like to do another futuristic world, like flying around in spaceships and maybe colonize another planet. Something like that would be really cool.

TFK:

What do you think kids will enjoy most about the movie?

JOSH:

I think kids are going to love going on the adventure with us. For me, even when I watch the movie now, I’m kind of along for the ride, even though I know what’s going to happen next. I’m really into it. I think that kids with an imagination, especially like mine, will go on this journey and probably go home and make up their own versions of it.

 


 

Q&A with Vanessa Hudgens

TFK:

Can you tell our readers about your character and how she fits into this story?

VANESSA HUDGENS:

Kailani is the daughter of Gabato, played by Luis Guzmán. Her father runs a helicopter tour ride business. Sean and his stepfather come to us, asking if we will take them to certain coordinates. We end up being swooped into a hurricane and arriving on the Mysterious Island, and—completely against my will—I get taken on this adventure and through it, slowly fall for Sean. She’s really thankful to him for opening her eyes to new adventures.

TFK:

Do you consider yourself an explorer?

VANESSA:

I’m a total explorer. I love adventures. I think of every day as an adventure. I love being spontaneous and not having a plan and ending up somewhere completely random and amazing.

TFK:

This was your first 3-D movie. Did anything feel different for you?

VANESSA:

Usually when I watch a movie that I’m in, I’m constantly critiquing myself. But with this, I was really sucked into the story because of the 3-D. It really took me along for a ride. I wasn’t busy criticizing myself. I was just enjoying the movie.

TFK:

Did you have a favorite moment in 3-D?

VANESSA:

The bird-chase scene [when the characters fly on giant bumblebees and are chased by birds]. At the very end, the birds crash together, and there is just an explosion of feathers. I love feathers and they’re colorful and they’re in 3-D, so it’s kind of like my heaven!

TFK:

Is there anything mystical on the island that you wish existed in real life?

VANESSA:

The [miniature] elephants. I would totally have one as a pet. They’re adorable.

TFK:

You filmed the movie in Hawaii. How was that experience?

VANESSA:

Just incredible. Every single day, I would show up to work and have to almost pinch myself because it was so stunning. There were these vast valleys and rolling mountains and lush greenery. I get to work and I’m almost in tears because it’s so beautiful.

TFK:

Was there anything that surprised you about shooting this movie?

VANESSA:

How awesome the cast was. It’s a hodge-podge of people, and we all do very different things, so just being on set with everybody and hearing the stories… The energy that everyone brings is so phenomenal. I just had the best time at work everyday.

TFK:

Did you have a favorite scene to shoot?

VANESSA:

I had a bunch, honestly, because I just had the very best time. Me and Josh, you can put us anywhere and we will sing and dance and just act so silly together and just have a blast.

TFK:

What do you think kids will enjoy most about the film?

VANESSA:

It’s just an amazingly fun rollercoaster ride. It just takes you on complete thrills. It sucks you into magical worlds. And it’s really funny, as well.