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November 22, 2014

'Cutting Edge: Fire & Ice' Stars Brendan Fehr and Francia Raisa Talk Toe Picks

by Denise Warner, posted Mar 12th 2010 5:00PM
The Cutting Edge: Fire & IceWith the Olympics over, many may be looking for their figure skating fix. Look no further than ABC Family's 'The Cutting Edge: Fire & Ice' (Sun., March 14 at 8PM ET).

Yes, it's the fourth incarnation of the beloved movie that had everyone saying "toe pick." Brendan Fehr -- known for his roles on 'Roswell' and 'Bones' -- stars as James McKinsey, "the bad boy of speed skating," who's been banned from his sport. Francia Raisa ('The Secret Life of the American Teenager') returns as Alex Delgado, now a figure skating teacher. Of course, sparks fly when the two are paired together to compete.

Fehr and Raisa chatted with AOL TV about the new sequel, the hardcore training and just which one of them gets to say the infamous "toe pick line."The Cutting Edge: Fire & IceWith the Olympics over, many may be looking for their figure skating fix. Look no further than ABC Family's 'The Cutting Edge: Fire & Ice' (Sun., March 14 at 8PM ET).

Yes, it's the fourth incarnation of the beloved movie that had everyone saying "toe pick." Brendan Fehr -- known for his roles on 'Roswell' and 'Bones' -- stars as James McKinsey, "the bad boy of speed skating," who's been banned from his sport. Francia Raisa ('The Secret Life of the American Teenager') returns as Alex Delgado, now a figure skating teacher. Of course, sparks fly when the two are paired together to compete.

Fehr and Raisa chatted with AOL TV about the new sequel, the hardcore training and just which one of them gets to say the infamous "toe pick line."

For the uninitiated, tell us a little bit about the movie.
Raisa: Go ahead, Brendan. You're good at explaining, better at explaining than me.
Fehr: 'The Cutting Edge' -- it's obviously in the same vein as the ones that preceded it. Francia reprises her role as Alex Delgado and her antagonist this time would be myself, playing James McKinsey, who comes from a speed skating background. And due to his getting kicked out of there, he then has the opportunity to team up with Alex, who kind of wants to get back in,and give the whole thing another shot. I want to use the opportunity to maintain my profile, and, from there our characters learn different things about each other and all that stuff, then we try and go and win the gold.


How do you hope fans of the original and the sequels will react?
Raisa: We're all hoping to get a good reaction. I think we'll get it. I mean we've gotten really good reactions from lots of people who have already seen it and ... someone told us they hope there is a fifth one. We're hoping for a good turnout. I know we have very faithful fans right now. I know they're excited for this movie to come out so I think they'll enjoy it.
Fehr: Obviously, the original has its place in everyone's heart. And it'll always be the original and stay that way. But this film stands on its own. Just in terms of the relationship between me and Francia and that kind of banter back and forth and all that stuff. I think this one is less about figure skating and more about that partnership. I think it hearkens back to the original more than two and three did. So I think it is a little truer to that. But obviously, we kind of put our own little spin on it so. I think people will definitely enjoy it.

Do either of you get to say toe pick?
Raisa: I don't think we say it in this one, do we?
Fehr: I say it.
Raisa: You do? Oh.
Fehr: You can't leave out toe pick.
Raisa: That's what I thought, but I didn't say it so I didn't remember. I don't know your lines.
Fehr: She reads over them. I have to tell her, "I'm done with my lines now."
Raisa: We had to put in a stand-in.
Fehr: Hardly. I put a tennis ball in there with a smiley face on it.
Raisa: He's that actor we all hate.

It sounds like you guys get along well. What was it like cultivating that relationship?
Fehr: It was good. We got to do a training first of all. I mean that's where we first met each other. We met for a few training sessions. We went there to practice a little bit to see where we were at, to meet the choreographer and all that stuff. Those training sessions were kind of little mini-movies unto their own.
Raisa: Yeah, they were.
Fehr: That with the ballet that we put together and the lift sessions and it was kind of interesting. We got to cultivate that and figure how each other worked and all that stuff. Once we got to Montreal [to film,] we knew each other relatively well given the amount of time we spent with each other. And we knew how to work with each other and have fun and get the job done. It was definitely enjoyable. We knew each others' personality, what would set one off, what would help the other out. It was pretty enjoyable, for sure.

How intense was the training?
Raisa: It was hard just trying to get some of the footwork. I had some problems turning right for some reason. And
the ballet part was a little hard, too. And then the lifts were the most challenging because they were painful to me.
And I don't know how that experience was for Brendan but they were pretty painful. And I had to do a lot of stretching and I wasn't that flexible before. So it was challenging trying to get my leg up there.

Do you two do a lot of the skating in the movie?
Raisa: I mean we have doubles but I was pretty surprised we did a lot more skating than I expected. And I think it shows in the movie.
Fehr: During the time we had to actually film it, I would have thought that every hour was precious so you definitely had to get the figure skating in there. And you know you have to look good. You definitely have to get the doubles in there perfecting all the moves and all that. But the director ... wanted to see it from the ice as much as possible and so, you know, we actually did quite a bit. I mean everything -- save the jumps and everything else. But we did a surprising amount. You see us a little more than I thought you would skating out there. And it looks like we probably did more than we actually did, which is the way I think it should. God bless the stunt doubles. They were very good [laughs].

What was your favorite part of making the movie?
Raisa: I enjoyed doing the whole thing. We had such an amazing director. He made it really enjoyable and really fairly easy for us. It hardly felt like I was working.
Fehr: I would say filming-wise it was working with Stephen [Herek], his background story and experience he was able to draw on. He directed 'Mr. Holland's Opus' and he directed the original 'Bill and Ted's' so he kind of ran the whole gamut from comedies to something a little more serious. So he has worked with a number of people. So a little bit of the knowledge that he was able to instill, it was really enjoyable for me. And he was an actor. He was really interested in what we were doing as opposed to simply how the picture looked on the screen. That was really enjoyable for me.

Were either of you watching the skating at the Olympics?
Fehr: The skating, I definitely watched it differently. I wouldn't say I watched more of it. I was definitely interested in who was winning. But it was definitely the little things they did that you don't pay attention to if you don't have a figure skating background which was what I was looking at. It's a different set of glasses. You train for it and you see what these guys do and it's like, ay yi yi. Light-years away.

So you had a different perspective on the figure skating because of the film?
Fehr: Just a little bit. It's the little stuff, like how you hold your fingers [and] the legs.
Raisa: Brendan is very passionate about his fingers.
Fehr: They were tough for me. I had a hard time. they hung there like limp hot dogs or too stiff. There's a fancy middle ground that's very hard to find.

It's a different movie, but kind of like "spirit fingers"?
Fehr: Yeah, yeah! It was my personal nightmare.

InsideTV: What's up next for you?
Raisa: Well I'm filming the new season of [The Secret Life of the American Teenager] and that's going to happen until the end of the year.
Fehr: And I'm looking for a new project.

Brendan, will we see you on 'Bones' again this season?
Fehr: I don't know. I think they're almost wrapped up so it's not looking good for this season. But hopefully. That would be very nice. I love that cast and the crew and the show and I really like the characters. Hopefully they'll find a story line that makes sense.

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