A number of beautiful belly dancers peppered the stage and made for festive Abu Dhabi setpieces. Of course, they were really just in Brooklyn.
One such hip-swiveling hottie, New Yorker Marni Halasa, was happy to share what it was like during the five-day filming of the karaoke scene.
When my belly dancing instructor first told me about the opportunity… I was thrilled. I have been part of Amira Mor's International Entertainment Company for the past eight years, performing belly dancing barefooted, in shoes and even on rollerblades in the New York/New Jersey area for corporate events and private parties.
The audition process… was a little nerve-wracking. It's a bit stressful when a Broadway choreographer teaches all this choreography in 15 mintues and then you're expected to dance on cue to be judged by a quartet of "Sex and the City 2" directors, including the big cheese, Michael Patrick King. Everything seemed to work itself out once I started to do my thing.
Sarah Jessica Parker, Cynthia Nixon, Kristin Davis and Kim Cattrall… all seemed to get along fine. Despite all the rumors, I didn't really see any tension between them during my five days on the set. As for us, they were really way too focused to have much interaction with the dancers, but they did look at us between takes occasionally and smile. Several times, Kim looked up at me and attempted to shimmy her shoulders or hips, half-jokingly, asking if she was doing the movement correctly (not so much).
I can tell you, those girls really sang… There was no lip-syncing going on, they sang it every single take.
At the end of the Abu Dhabi night club filming… Kim came up to us personally and thanked each of us and told us how beautiful we were. It was around 2:30 a.m. and everyone was so tired and happy that the filming had come to an end (we had done 18 takes of that scene!), but she took the time to come over and thank us personally.
Director Michael Patrick King director… also came up to us afterwards and said, "You guys killed that scene!" and claimed our "performance was really exciting to watch." That was definitely one of the highlights of the experience.
Seeing my face on the silver screen and my name in the credits… is still one of the best moments I have ever had! It was so exciting to be part of such a large production, especially "Sex and the City" because I used to watch it religiously. And even though it was exhausting doing take after take, dancing until my feet hurt beyond belief, I would do it again in a heartbeat (agents, call me). I went with my family to see the movie and everyone was so surprised and thrilled that I was so recognizable. Even my conservative Arabic father from Akron, Ohio (who always wished I would have used my law degree) was thrilled and when he saw me up on the big screen, said jokingly, "You could have been on the Supreme Court, but maybe belly dancing in 'Sex and the City 2' is even better."