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USS Truxtun sailors lend their expertise to “Captain Phillips”

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Posted at 7:06 PM, Oct 10, 2013
and last updated 2014-02-27 16:58:22-05

Norfolk, Va. -From taking care of sailors on the USS Truxtun, to treating Tom Hanks’ wounds – a local medic’s real life training helped prepare her to step on the big screen in “Captain Phillips.”

In real life, HM-2 Danielle Albert serves as a corpsman aboard the USS Truxtun. But in Hollywood, she is known as the girl who almost stole the final Oscar-worthy scene from Tom Hanks.

“I didn’t know how much of an affect it had on other people,” she says. “I didn’t know anything about the scene.”

In actuality, no one really knew about it. The final minutes of “Captain Phillips” were made up on the fly by director Paul Greengrass, during filming on the ship.

“Paul Greengrass came up and said, Hey Doc, I have a question. What would you do in a real situation?'” Albert said.

And that’s how Albert found herself face to face with a bloodied and dazed Tom Hanks, portraying the moments after Captain Phillips was rescued.

“He comes around the corner, he’s shaking, and he sits right here on the table and it’s all filmed here,” she says. “I did exactly what I would do in a real situation and my military training kicked in, and I stepped out of the spotlight and started treating a patient. And Tom Hanks acted like a real patient and that’s what triggered it.”

Albert wasn’t the only Truxtun crewmember in the spotlight. Captain Andrew Biene is the Commanding Officer. In the movie, he actually plays the role of the USS Bainbridge Executive Officer.

“It was very interesting. While we were at sea, I’d be doing my normal XO job and then would literally change hats and take my Truxtun hat off and put a Bainbridge hat on and go down to film a scene,” he says.

And those scenes were just as demanding as actual Navy training.

“We did some challenging stuff, a lot harder. Everything from ship movements, helicopter movements, towing a lifeboat. There was some demanding seamanship involved,” he says.

But in the end, the Truxtun sailors just hope they did justice to the crew of the Bainbridge.

“I just did the acting part. I couldn’t even imagine being in that real situation,” Albert says.