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Taylor Kitsch and Peter Berg contributed to the Battleship script

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Just because the film has explosions in doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a script!  Who do you think wrote those explosions...?

'Battleship' (2012): Taylor Kitsch and Peter Berg contributed to the script

In an interview with Screen Rant, Battleship star Taylor Kitsch said that:

"I think you will get (director) Pete Berg's, as well as my own, flavor in there. We're very collaborative, and we co-wrote a lot of those scenes. And it has that feel of a Pete Burg movie, which is so fun. But he definitely doesn't forget about character. And that guy can tell stories just as good as anyone else."

He went on to say:

"It's how collaborative Pete and I are. It's really how much we admire working with each other. It was just bouncing ideas... He would send me the script and be like 'I want you to rip it in half. Do it.'...and he'd be like 'No. Yes. Cool. I'm thinking about it.' It was great."

Taken out of context, that makes Berg sound really indecisive, or at least ambivalent, but presumably he was referring to different ideas...

In any case, the collaborative relationship he's referring to presumably arose from the acclaimed TV series Friday Nights Lights, which Taylor Kitsch starred in and Peter Berg developed, executive produced, and directed two episodes of, based on the film of the same name he directed.

Director Peter Berg says that in her audition, Rihanna “just started improvising, playing around with the script”; but didn't say whether any of her improvisations made it into the movie.

He also amusingly described the film as: “It’s like a little love story, a little small drama with a couple of mild alien invasions sequences and some big destroyers thrown in for good measure.”

Taylor Kitsch also described Battleship in the following way: "...it's gonna be a fun ride. I think people just want to be so critical. Just enjoy the...thing. Go and have an open mind with it. With anything you go to. It's a summer fun movie that I guarantee will be entertaining start to finish. That's all I can say about it. Enjoy it."

Having seen the movie, this writer is totally in agreement. Moreover, the quote applies to most summer blockbusters in general. Critics often seem to have a weird bias against movies with a sense of fun.

However, the subject of rewriting is an interesting one. Jon Hoeber & Erich Hoeber (Red, Whiteout) are the credited writers, but Kitsch didn't mention if they were involved with rewrites. While making a film is a collaborative process, it's quite common in Hollywood for writers to deliver a script and then have it rewritten to at least some extent, either at the studio's or the director's behest. (Or sometimes an actor's.) This doesn't necessarily mean they did a bad job; simply that a different perspective was required, or the script just needed to be honed.

Interestingly, in the case of Battleship, the premise of the characters having to fight off an alien invasion (as opposed to, you know, just ships firing at each other, as in the board game) was suggested by Transformers director Michael Bay, though he didn't work on the film as such. Because every film would be better with Michael Bay adding aliens to it. Though not every TMNT fan would agree...

Battleship is directed by Peter Berg and stars Taylor Kitsch, Brookyln Decker, Alexander Skarsgaard, Rihanna, and Liam Neeson, and is on general release now.

See also:

Disney's 'John Carter' review

In praise of Friday Night Lights


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