Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon had nothing but nice things to say about each other after filming "Water for Elephants," but at the film's New York premiere, it was their elephant co-star that they wanted to praise.
"It was great, I got to work with the elephant for two months, just training and learning all these tricks," Witherspoon said. "I mean, she was scary, she's huge! But she's this beautiful creature. It was a thrill, it's one of those things where you leave and think 'this will never happen in my life again, I'll never get this special experience again.'"
Based on the New York Times Bestselling Sara Gruen novel, "Water For Elephants" tells the story of Jacob (Pattinson), a veterinary student who leaves school after his parents are killed and joins a traveling circus as their vet, only to fall in love with the cruel animal trainer's (Christoph Waltz) wife and star performer, Marlena (Reese Witherspoon).
Witherspoon explains, "I play Marlena and she's a circus performer and she starts out the movie working on horses and then her main horse passed away and she has to start working with an elephant [Rosie] and Robert is the elephant's caregiver."
Pattinson talked of his bond with the elephant, whose real name is Tai in a recent interview with Ryan Seacrest.
"When I met Tai, who plays Rosie in the movie, she was with five or six fully-grown elephants and it is relatively intimidating at the beginning," Pattinson told Seacrest. "I got carried around in her mouth and stuff, the first day I met her and you quickly realize how incredible they are... they're the most sophisticated, gentle creatures you could possibly hope to work with."
Pattinson admit that working with wild animals meant that there was always something going on, but Pattinson says that at the heart of the movie, it's simply "a beautiful, beautiful old-fashioned love story."
Pattinson, a 24-year-old British actor, is known for his heartthrob role as the vampire Edward, who romances Kristen Stewart's character Bella, in the "Twilight" movies. The final installments of "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn" are set to be released in two parts on November 18, 2011 and November 16, 2012, respectively.
Witherspoon recent married her longtime boyfriend Jim Toth, a 40-year-old Hollywood agent. Wedding guests included Renee Zellweger, Sean Penn, Scarlett Johansson, Tobey Maguire, Robert Downey Jr. and Alyssa Milano.
The film was released in theaters on Friday, April 22. Check out the trailer for "Water for Elephants" below.