Breaking Dawn part 1 and part 2 director Bill Condon wrote the following letter to all of us Twilighters:
Greetings to our global Twihard family,
On the flight now from Madrid to Berlin, I wanted to check in one last time, as you’re finally getting a look at what we’ve all been working on so intensely. It’s hard to believe that after our Berlin premiere tonight, my TWILIGHT journey will finally come to a close. It’s been almost three years since I first wrote to you. I’m very proud of what we’ve created together since then, and I hope that PART II fulfills your expectations for the grand finale to Stephenie’s sprawling saga. Fingers crossed that you’ve also managed to stay at least mostly spoiler-free, in order to enjoy the twists and parting gifts we have in store for you…
Thank you again for making me feel like a member of your fandom family online…for sleeping in The Line in San Diego in order to laugh with us in Hall H…for traveling great distances to join us in L.A. for last year’s Tent City and this year’s Fan Camp. Above all, thank you for trusting me with this universe you care so deeply about – we tried to match your intensity in our attention to every detail. That said, I don’t think I’ll ever live down the shame of being spied on by Twihard covens around the world on our very first night of shooting in Rio. Thanks to photos shot and instantly posted online of Bella and Edward on their honeymoon, we were called out in real time for missing a certain engagement ring… (Sorry — again!)
As with you all, what I’ll take with me from my time in Forks are so many great friendships – our massive cast of talented actors, and new creative partners such as Melissa Rosenberg, Guillermo Navarro and Phil Tippett. I hope to know them all for years and to work with them again soon, making movies yet to be dreamed up. At the L.A. premiere Monday night, Phil said we should make a “bloody, giant monster movie.” But is there room for a musical number?
Bill Condon (Breaking Dawn movies director) took to the official Twilight Facebook page to send out a Breaking Dawn part 2 production update for us Twilighters!
Greetings from Los Angeles, where we’re hard at work on BREAKING DAWN, PART TWO. It’s truly crazy to think that it’s been a year since we wrapped production in Vancouver, since for those of us in the editing room the work has never stopped.
A film is a lot like a puzzle, with each piece – each shot, no matter how brief – needing to fit exactly with the ones around it. Our Part Two puzzle is finally coming into full view, and in a few weeks we’ll be heading back north to pick up some additional shots – the last tiny missing pieces. We’re not shooting any new scenes or dialogue, just some technical work with some of our cast and stunt actors.
I am really looking forward to being back on set with some of the friends I’ve made on my Twilight journey, like the great Guillermo Navarro, our cinematographer, and his crew. And yes, Rob and Kristen will be there too, to pop in those gold contacts one last time…
I’m excited to report that before too long we’ll have another trailer for you to decode. And wait until you see the first posters — they’re unlike any “Twilight” images you’ve seen before. And then November 16th will be upon us and the final film will be yours!
Until then, have a very happy spring, and I’ll check back in with you soon.
Breaking Dawn movie director Bill Condon took to the official Twilight Facebook page to wish everyone happy holidays! You can read his message below:
“Holiday greetings to all of you and yours, and also a note of thanks for your support of Breaking Dawn. Your affection for the movie has been wonderful to experience. We’re hard at work on Part 2, and are already very much looking forward to bringing it to you next year. See you soon! – Bill”
Bill Condon sat down with The Hollywood Reporter and discussed splitting Breaking Dawn into two movies, working with the trio and more!
As expected, fans turned out in droves to see Breaking Dawn – Part 1 its opening weekend (the film is expected to make around $140 million domestically).
The penultimate film in The Twilight Saga‘s franchise, which hit theaters Nov. 18, stars series regulars Robert Pattinson (Edward Cullen), Kristen Stewart (Bella Swan) and Taylor Lautner (Jacob Black). But, in addition to a few vampire and werewolf fresh faces in the cast, the movie’s director, Bill Condon was also new to Twilight‘s world.
“For me, this movie, it was a combination of the romance and the romantic melodradrama – sort of classic Hollywood filmmaking in the first two thirds of this movie, and that appealed to me,” he told The Hollywood Reporter of his vision for Breaking Dawn – Part 1. “And the last third, it felt like a flat-out horror movie. I started in horror movies and I love horror movies and I’ve been looking to do one again, so that combination of things really appealed to me.”
Condon also said that his stars were very involved in their character’s archs throughout the shooting process.
“First of all, Kristen is the biggest Twihard, so for her, she was excited, because it wasn’t all being crunched into a two-hour movie, so it was sort of like, “Oh, no, I miss that line, I miss that moment” stuff like that. And sometimes I agreed, and sometimes not,” he said. While Pattinson “explained something that he had been playing that we never saw before and I thought, ‘let’s put that into this movie.’ For Taylor [he wanted] to really explore the way that Jacob’s point of view is expressed in the book for the first time in Breaking Dawn. We really get more inside his of head.”
At the movie’s Hollywood premiere Nov. 15, the director, who’s also helmed Dreamgirls and Chicago, told THR what fans can expect when the screen goes black on Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (after Bella opens her eyes as a newborn vampire) and they return a year from now to see the franchise’s final film.
“Early on I put the scripts together, a big 220-page script, and it’s the same thing. It’s the same story. It is one book that we’re telling and it really is the minute the first movie ends the second one begins. So it was good, I can’t imagine having a year break in between those two.”
One things fans can look forward to? A vampire flash mob that they surprised Condon with on set.
“It was the most brilliant thing ever!” Condon told THR. “It’s for movie two. It’s going to definitely be on the DVD. It was like a Westside Story dance off, it was incredible.”
Robert Pattinson & Breaking Dawn movie director Bill Condon broke down the making of Breaking Dawn with USA Today! Check out the excerpt and link to the full article below:
“I was reading it going, ‘Wow, so much happens in this story,’ ” says Condon. “It certainly doesn’t play safe. It was daunting.”
Thankfully, the Oscar winner (for Gods and Monsters‘ screenplay) found words of inspiration for his first foray into the world of teen fiction.
“There was one very consistent idea that kept coming through,” he says. “Don’t water it down. There’s something crazy and intense about this book, and you just have to embrace it.”
Meyer’s fourth and final Twilight tome has spent 163 weeks on USA TODAY’s Best-Selling Books list since its 2008 release. Condon hopes the legion of “Twi-hard” fans also embraces the closing of the wildly successful film series, which has been split in two (Part 2 will be released next November).
“This was the longest book,” says Condon. “I don’t feel like I made two movies, I feel like I made a really long final chapter. It would have given it short shrift to cram that into one movie.”
The vampire-romance movie series has proven to be a monster force at the box office, with the previous three films (2008′s Twilight, 2009′s New Moon and 2010′s Eclipse) earning a combined $791 million. But movie fans can be fickle. Breaking Dawn — Part 1 will be a clear gauge to see if they are still feeling the passion for the love triangle between the vampire Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), the human Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) and the werewolf Jacob Black (Taylor Lautner).
Keith Simanton, managing editor of film database IMDb.com, says that upcoming movies such as 2012′s The Hunger Games are taking online attention away from the Twilight phenomenon. “Whether that translates into real-world tracking, we’ll just have to see,” he says. “We’ll find out this weekend if this series has aged well or poorly.”
Settling onto a couch in a sparsely decorated office on the former Warner Bros. lot, Condon, 56, insists he has not felt any waning of enthusiasm as fans dissected his every move. The attention has been so great that when a worker climbs a ladder to clean his window, Condon jokes that it’s a Twi-hard peeking in on him.
“There certainly has been a lot of eyes on you right from the beginning since people care about this so much,” he says. “It’s great. But there is a sense that you don’t want to screw it up for them.”
Beer and brainstorming
Condon met with the movie’s stars to tap into their Twilight experience. The first pizza-and-beer meeting with Pattinson at the actor’s temporary L.A. home started slowly.
“We spent probably half of the conversation trying to figure out exactly how to order the Domino’s,” Pattinson says sheepishly. “I didn’t know what my own address was.”
Pattinson, 25, had to track down his manager for the address. But once the food arrived and the beverages flowed (“we had many, many beers,” says Condon), so did the ideas.
“Bill was sensitive to the fact that the entire cast has basically grown up together,” says Pattinson. “He wanted to get on the same page as everyone.”
Condon also developed a tight working relationship with screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg, who has written all of the Twilight screenplays. She calls it “the best collaboration of my career.”
“This movie really had the big scenes,” says Rosenberg. “You had to get those right (or face) pain of death from the fans.”
Movieline chatted with Breaking Dawn movie director Bill Condon! Check out the excerpt below:
Every director who’s gone through the whirlwind circus that is filming and releasing a Twilight movie eventually gets to relax and breathe a sigh of relief, but Bill Condon (Gods and Monsters, Dreamgirls) still has miles and miles to go. Fans and critics will finally see what the Oscar-winner brings to the YA vampire franchise when The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 hits theaters Nov. 18, but if they find themselves displeased with his treatment of Stephenie Meyer’s beloved novel, it could be a tough year’s wait until Condon’s simultaneously-shot series ender (Breaking Dawn – Part 2) concludes the series next fall.
But! Judging from the temperature of the Twilightcommunity thus far, Condon probably needn’t feel anxious; he’s played the Summit game so far with palpable enthusiasm for the tale of one Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) and her angst-ridden coming of age saga, earning fan support along the way. Fully aware that much rides on getting Breaking Dawn – Part 1’s big moments right — the wedding, the honeymoon, the butter-hued love-making, and its gory repercussions — Condon collaborated creatively with the series’s best expert (Stewart, “the biggest Twi-hard in the world”) but took care to put his own cinematic stamp on Breaking Dawn.
Condon rang Movieline the other week and discussed his pre-release nerves, the Breaking Dawn on set dance-off that warmed his heart, the question of the “gay sensibility” he may or may not have brought to the Twilight franchise, what big plans might be in store for Breaking Dawn 1 & 2 onDVD/Blu-ray, and more.
How are you feeling in this moment, knowing the film is about to start being seen, finally, after all this time?
I know! Well, anxious, obviously. But excited, too. Because you live in a cocoon for so long, and we don’t do big previews or anything like that, so it’ll be fun, you know?
Breaking Dawn – Part 1 is a part of theTwilight Saga that contains a lot of big important life events happen to Bella Swan — the wedding, the honeymoon, the birth of a child, and what comes after that… which of those big moments did you feel the most pressure to nail?
I think the big three — wedding, honeymoon, birth. You just felt like those, you’ve got to get right. But man, I would say the most pressure might have been the wedding. Just because, my god, everybody has an idea of what it should be like. And I have to say, ultimately I kind of stayed with that one idea: What’s Bella feeling? For each of those three things. And once you sort of do it through that prism, things start falling into place. So that it really because about, what is she feeling as she walks down that aisle? But you have this incredible collaborator in Kristen Stewart. The wedding made us all anxious, but excited.
Did Kristen have a lot to say, a lot of input into how the wedding came together?
Absolutely. She was a big collaborator in the design of the dress, and in general… as you know, she’s like the biggest Twi-hard in the world, and she’s very tough on herself as well. She had a list of things she was most anxious to get right, and I think the wedding was a huge part of that. Just making sure that she could express as much as possible — and again, it’s all happening on her face. That’s not dialogue, that’s not anything. It’s just to express as much of what’s going on inside that character as she could.
So in a way, it’s like you and Kristen planned the wedding together.
Rumor has it there is a musical number in the wedding scene. True?
This has gotten a little [distorted]… there’s no musical number. No. All there is, is that people dance at the wedding so we brought a choreographer in; Ashley [Greene] and Jackson [Rathbone] are both great dancers, and they just chill out for a moment. That’s all it is.
But there was some sort of dance battle on set?
There was. It was one of the greatest things I’ve ever seen. In that second movie, as you know from the book, a half hour takes place in this one location, this on field. And we shot there for — when you include the second unit it was a couple of months, but the first unit was there for many weeks – and we came to the last, widest shot, with 80 vampires on one side and 27 vampires on the other. I’m sitting up the ladder and suddenly you hear this music — “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” — and suddenly the Cullen side starts this incredible, West Side Story kind of rumble dance, and of course the other vampires then start to dance back. It was unbelievably great.
Did you film that? Is that something that will be seen on the Blu-ray?
I think there was a lot of B-camera rolling, and stuff like that. So that will all come out – but it’s the second movie.