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Emmys 2017
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Cameron Crowe captures 'Zoo' candids with iPhone

The director snaps pics of Matt Damon and Scarlett Johansson on set

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Matt Damon and Scarlett Johansson might want to check their mailboxes. Their We Bought a Zoo director, Cameron Crowe, is sending them a unique wrap gift: a digital picture frame packed with snapshots he took with his iPhone during filming in Thousand Oaks, Calif., last spring. ”It’s weird — the first time you lift a camera in the middle of talking to somebody about how you want a scene to go, they’re kind of like, ‘Huh?”’ says Crowe, who co-wrote the dramedy, out Dec. 23, about a single dad who refurbishes a zoo. ”I tried to capture the mood on the set, which was a nice little community vibe. Jerry Maguire was really the last time where I felt like everybody was so happy.” Crowe has been under pressure from PETA to add a warning to the movie ”about the dangers of owning wild animals” after dozens of escaped exotic animals from a private Ohio preserve were killed earlier this month. But Zoo‘s studio, 20th Century Fox, says the movie’s story is ”completely unrelated” to the Ohio case and that recent events ”will not affect our plans.” For Crowe, the concern is thanking his cast for their hard work, sooner rather than later. Says the director, ”I should have had these gifts out a long time ago.”