Lynsey Jacob, 26, of New York City, won a behind-the-scenes set visit to the upcoming fairy tale thriller "Snow White and the Huntsman," starring Kristen Stewart, Charlize Theron and Chris Hemsworth. These are her stories.
I want to begin this post by saying that I still can’t believe I won the "Snow White and the Huntsman" Facebook sweepstakes…and the trip is over! So many people have told me how lucky I am (which I won’t deny in this case), but the only other thing I’ve ever won by chance was a laundry basket at my high school’s after-prom. So in the words of Kristen Stewart, this was a BFD.
On the Tuesday before Thanksgiving I received an email telling me I was the grand-prize winner, and less than a week later, I was on a red-eye to Heathrow with my best friend who came as my guest. On the morning of November 30, a car picked us up from the hotel. I was on the verge of hyperventilating, and we were on our way to Pinewood Studios!
The "SWATH" unit publicist met us there and drove us around, giving a full tour of the studios before taking us through the different sets, mostly consisting of castle interiors. I saw costumes, the magic mirror and the milk bath the Queen uses (it felt like thin Elmer’s glue). I found out once I arrived on set that Kristen (Snow White), Sam Claflin (Prince William) and Chris (the Huntsman) were all there and I’d have a chance to meet each of them.
Pfft, I wasn’t nervous at all.
Some may already know this, but I’m one of the girls that started the Kristen Stewart’s Hot Bodyguard Facebook page, and so, of course, that information got passed along to the publicist, who seemed just as excited for me to meet him as well. (Much to his surprise, she had called him "HBG" earlier in the week.)
The first person I got to meet was Kristen. We walked onto the set and caught her during a break with the director and Sam. She was in costume and her makeup was flawless. We made introductions, shook hands and were ushered off to see Chris on a different set so that we could come back later for pictures.
Chris was rehearsing an action scene with the second unit director when we arrived and came by our little group afterwards to talk with us a bit. We spoke about the typical things that I was asked about throughout the day—where I’m from (“You sound American,” he said), how did I win the contest, etc. Such a nice guy. Before we left, we took a picture with Chris and then were on our way to grab lunch.
Going back to the set where Kristen and Sam were filming was a bit nerve wracking. It was as we entered the stage area that I finally got to introduce myself to HBG.
Here’s how that went:
Me: Hi, I’m Lynsey. I’m one of the girls from your Facebook page. [Shakes his hand]
HBG: Hi. [Something registers in his eyes...he knows!]
Me: Did you go to the University of Kentucky? [Pointing at his UK hat]
HBG: No, I just like the hat. [Eyeing me curiously] Don’t go investigating me!
Me: Oh, no! I was just wondering. [Eyes wide as saucers. Probably blushing.]
A few moments later still…
HBG: [To me] So how did this all come about?
Me: The Facebook page?
HBG: No, the contest. [Grinning at me like I’m crazy]
Me: Oh! [There goes that blushing thing again]
Then he went on to talk to us about how long we’d be in London and what we planned to do while there. He was very nice, but also on the job, so we let him be after our short conversation. Although I did get one last short convo in with him as we left for the day (you’ll have to keep reading to get to that part).
We stood off to the side and watched Kristen and Sam doing a pretty important scene. It was so interesting watching them perform a scene live and then re-watching it on the monitors. There were moments between takes when Kristen would get down from the stage and watch herself on the monitors. You could tell she took her role very seriously.
Then after one particular take, Kristen walked by and the publicist took that opportunity to call her over to get a photo. Kristen agreed and said she just needed to get her sweatshirt. When she came back, she and I got together for a photo and both awkwardly put our arms around each other for the picture and then kind of realized we were striking poses and laughed it off and smiled for the camera.
Once she took a photo with my friend, I wasn’t sure if she was going to leave since it was literally between takes when we grabbed her, so I said to her, "I don’t know how much time you have, but I just wanted to tell you that I was at the 'Breaking Dawn' premiere and my friends and I missed you because you had to be rushed inside the theater." And due to my excitement/nervousness, the only real thing I remember her saying word-for-word during our entire conversation (my friend has had to fill me in on a lot of it) is her response to this statement in which she said (twice), "Oh, sh--! I’m so sorry!" Of course it wasn’t her fault and I told her that, but I just wanted her to know how happy I was to have been able to meet her there on the "SWATH" set. Lucky for us, Kristen stayed a while longer to hang out and chat with us. She’s definitely excited about "SWATH" (Her words: "It’s going to be f---ing awesome.”). After about five minutes she had to get back on set, and so with a wave, she walked away.
That, my friends, would have to be the best five minutes of the day. Hands down.
We also sneaked in a photo with Sam between takes. Also a very nice guy. I’m looking forward to seeing him in this film and future ones.
The rest of the afternoon we spent watching take after take of a pretty crucial scene (awesome). Smoothies and freshly baked muffins were passed around. It was a completely fascinating experience and I probably would’ve just stood there until they wrapped for the day if they would have let me.
Once it was time to leave, and we started walking down towards the doors, we all shook HBG’s hand once again, and I had my second conversation with him. I may have offered to take down the Facebook page if he really wanted us to, but HBG said that as long as there’s nothing personal on there, he’s fine with it. So with HBG’s approval, the page continues. (And if you ever read this, HBG, don’t worry, we’ll never put out personal info about you!)
Well, ladies and gents, the lesson to learn from my experience is this: People really do win contests. So enter those sweepstakes. You never know if you may get an email telling you you’re the winner.
A special thanks to Universal, the "SWATH" unit publicist, Chris, Sam, Kristen and HBG for making it the best set visit possible.
What would you ask the cast of "Snow White and the Huntsman" if you had a chance? Tell us in the comments and on Twitter!