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Video:The Karate Kid - Will Smith, Harald Zwart Interviews

with Rebecca Murray

Will Smith didn't want to take the attention away from his son Jaden at the premiere of 'The Karate Kid,' so he let Jaden do all the talking for the family. But director Harald Zwart was definitely willing to chat up his film on the red carpet.See Transcript

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Transcript:The Karate Kid - Will Smith, Harald Zwart Interviews

Rebecca Murray from About.com Hollywood Movies at the LA premiere of Columbia Pictures' The Karate Kid.

The Karate Kid Producer Will Smith

Will Smith: "We're very excited. We think he did a brilliant job. We're happy that he's a disciplined young man, and we think that people are going to love this movie."

The Karate Kid Director Harald Zwart

So shooting in China must have presented its own set of problems. What did you encounter?

Harald Zwart: "Actually the problem was more that we were a big movie production and when you march in with a Hollywood production, you're like 19 trailers and we were a 550 man crew. And we wanted to shoot on the streets in Beijing and in the Forbidden City and in those temples, so we just had, halfway through, we just had a big meeting and I said, 'We've got to be a small, independent crew. We've got to make sure we just have what we can carry.' And that's one of those days when I saw Will and Jackie [Chan] up in the mountains carry sound equipment and stuff."

Really physically carrying things?

Harald Zwart: "Yeah. And that just shows how great they are as filmmakers. They could leave their trailers behind, no problem. So that was amazing."

So touching a franchise that people still love, did you feel a little extra weight having to do that?

Harald Zwart: "Yeah, yeah. I mean, of course. I myself loved the original movie so I just wanted to make sure that we didn't change it too much or try to... We knew there were some moments in it that we could never make better. You know, the wax on/wax off is pretty genius, so we just needed to make it a little different."

This isn't a remake - this is a whole different story?

Harald Zwart: "No, it's a retelling of the same story. Yes, it's close enough. You'll see the iconic moments through the movie but it's totally its own movie."

Why did you think Jaden Smith could do this role?

Harald Zwart: "I mean, he's a kid with a grown up soul. When you see him, he has real depth. He's real emotional. He was the hardest-working person on the crew. He had to learn all the kung fu. He learned Chinese. He learned all his lines. It was amazing. He was a fantastic kid."

And you said "kung fu" and that's one thing people have been talking about is it's a kung fu movie and it's The Karate Kid. But that's explained in there, right?

Harald Zwart: "Yeah, yeah. When you see the movie, you'll understand. We also know the difference."

More on The Karate Kid:

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  • The Karate Kid Trailer, Poster, Cast List, and Interviews

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