Welcome to another edition of Inquire Within… Through your submissions, Cameron will answer your questions in his own words. The goal is to have a new question and answer posting every few weeks leading up to the releases of Pearl Jam Twenty and We Bought a Zoo this fall and The Union early next year.
The Uncool: Why did you decide to rework the location in We Bought A Zoo from England to Southern California?
Cameron: The story was set in Boston when I first read Aline’s script, and she really made it sing as a universal story. I watched Benjamin Mee’s BBC documentary, and read his great book a few times and knew that Ben’s story (while very much set in the UK) was largely a personal one. I also knew a ton of places in “inner” California that felt like my “Dartmoor”… places that felt far removed and would support a struggling zoo. Then we found the Greenfield Ranch location, outside Westlake Village, and we all fell in love with the property. Plus, I wanted to work with Matt Damon, and I think he gets things done pretty well with his natural accent… so we started casting American actors, reading with them, setting the story here in California… and the real Benjamin Mee gave us a thumbs up… and that’s a mighty thumbs up. We filmed in “out of the way” California, places that don’t normally turn up in the movies. (Though Jamie Foxx had a place in the hills across the way and the rumor was he was tracking our movie through binoculars. Hey Jamie!)
Please send in your Pearl Jam Twenty questions for Cameron and maybe yours will be part of a future installment of Inquire Within…