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Brie Larson gets the shot as war photographer Mason Weaver in 'Kong: Skull Island.'(Photo: Chuck Zlotnick)
Brie Larson didn't just portray Vietnam-era war photographer Mason Weaver in Kong: Skull Island (in theaters nationwide Friday). She also shot the part.
The Oscar-winning actress, 27, packed the Canon AE-1 film camera she's had since high school and in between scenes chronicled her six-month Kong journey to Australia, Vietnam and Hawaii. On camera for Kong, Larson wielded Weaver's Leica.
"I started taking pictures to get into Weaver's mindset, but also because I was in such beautiful locations with such incredible, emotive actors," says Larson. "It was a great opportunity to capture these moments."
Months later, Larson developed the film and re-lived Kong.
"They really captured the experience," says Larson. "And I'm just amazed that they all turned out."
Here are excerpts from Larson's photo journey.
High cheekbones in the bone graveyard
Tom Hiddleston as photographed by Brie Larson. (Photo: Brie Larson)
Larson shot this picture of Tom Hiddleston, who plays tracker James Conrad, on a set filled with the island's skeletal remains of Kong's family.
"I had never been on a set like that — it was like Disneyland with these giant bones everywhere and atmospheric smoke," says Larson. "I probably burned through 10 rolls of film; I just loved how everything looked. You see the perfect shot and you have got to get it."
John C. Reilly in the rain
John C. Reilly poses goofily with an umbrella while shooting 'Kong: Skull Island.' (Photo: Brie Larson)
John C. Reilly plays a World War II survivor who has been stranded for 28 years on mysterious Skull Island. But Reilly managed to get his hands on a modern umbrella during a rain-soaked moment between shots.
"We experienced all types of weather," says Larson. "We went from 120 degrees to freezing cold hail and there were times when we would get rained off our set."
Waiting for new direction
Tom Hiddleston at ease in between scenes of 'Kong: Skull Island' with John Goodman (left in hat) in the background. (Photo: Brie Larson)
"Most of what I was trying to do was get the moments between filming," says Larson. "These sort of relaxed moments when people are figuring out what to do next."
Even between scenes, Hiddleston (center, with co-star John Goodman in hat) kept on his tracker face. "He's good at that, that's his vibe," says Larson.
Capturing her first flight
The cast took Huey rides in Hawaii for key scenes in 'Kong: Skull Island.' (Photo: Brie Larson)
During one of the first days, Larson and the cast boarded Huey helicopters for a dramatic sunset shoot off the coast of Oahu.
"I had never been in a helicopter before. I was strapped in a way that I could just hang out," says Larson, who captured one of the other Hueys in the pack. "It definitely made me nervous at first, but I saw it was holding my weight. And you have to get the shot."
Tom Hiddleston gets high off flying
Tom Hiddleston leans into his Huey ride in 'Kong: Skull Island.' (Photo: Brie Larson)
Larson captured her Huey mate Hiddleston, who was exuberant. "There was a playfulness in his eyes and the wind was blowing his hair around. It was just a wonderful moment," says Larson.
photo of See Brie Larson's behind-the-scenes photos from 'Kong: Skull Island'
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