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FORCES OF NATURE

About the Production
Producers Susan Arnold and Donna Arkoff Roth had teamed on offbeat comedies like "Benny and Joon" and "Grosse Point Blank

Producers Susan Arnold and Donna Arkoff Roth had teamed on offbeat comedies like "Benny and Joon" and "Grosse Point Blank." However, when they read Marc Lawrence's original screenplay "Forces of Nature," they saw an opportunity to tackle two different kinds of comedy that had always appealed to them.

"We had always wanted to do a romantic comedy, Arnold offers, "and there's something so wonderful about having people on the road-the same rules don't apply. you do things you wouldn't normally do in your own little world-anything can happen. Ben, this conservative. buttoned-down guy, is the type who thinks he has everything planned. But on the way to his wedding, he encounters incredible obstacles that keep him from getting there, including a plane crash, a hurricane and the biggest force of nature of all-this wildly spirited, fabulous girl who both scares him and attracts him."

"Together, Ben and Sarah find themselves in situations that would never happen in their regular lives... certainly not in Ben's," Roth adds. "How you play the hand you're dealt and get yourself out of these predicaments can be very funny."

Completing the producing team is Ian Bryce, who is no stranger to forces of nature, having produced "Twister" and "Hard Rain," On the heels of completing work on "Saving Private Ryan," Bryce notes. "I thought the timing was right for me personally to do a comedy. Even though this particular comedy has hurricane effects and other things that are more my background, it was really great to do something a bit more lighthearted."

The choice of a director became clear after the producers saw the directorial debut film of Bronwen Hughes, "Harriet the Spy.', "We thought it was wonderful and fresh," says Arnold. "Bronwen brought an amazing visual sense to this movie. There is a unique twist to her approach to life and to her work, which gave the film a very different slant from most romantic comedies."

Bronwen Hughes offers that it was, in fact, the unique twist of the script that first attracted her to the project. "What I liked about the script was that just when you think it's heading in a certain direction, it whips the rug out from under you. I was also looking for scripts with a powerful female lead, and when I read 'Forces of Nature,' I found in Sarah a strong female heroine-flawed, but interesting, and just plain funny."

To play this multi-faceted role, the filmmakers had one name on top of the list of actresses they considered. Arnold asserts, "From the beginning, we said that Sandra Bullock would be incredible for the part of Sarah, but we all thought it was a long shot at best."

To the filmmakers' delight, Sandra Bullock loved the script and accepted the role. "I liked that it had some punch to it., some surprises. It's unpredictable, I also loved that they thought of me for this role, which isn't really like anything I've done before," Bullock states. "Sarah is wildly free-spirited, which can be very infectious. She's either a little crazy or she just doesn't have that gene that helps you not embarrass yourself. Then, when you get close, you discover that it all comes from a tremendous amount

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