New Moon Director Chris Weitz Spills Juicy Twilight Details

A chat with director Chris Weitz reveals a LOT about the upcoming Twilight sequel.

ON ECLIPSE AND DAVID SLADE

While Weitz works against the clock to finish New Moon (which will be released November 20, 2009), director David Slade (30 Days of Night) has already begun prepping the third film in the series, Eclipse. Slade even visited the Vancouver set of New Moon to get briefed by Weitz, who revealed that visual effects studio Tippett Studios will provide werewolf effects for both New Moon and Eclipse.

"David Slade came in while we were still shooting the end of New Moon and I showed him everything that I could to give him a sense of what direction we were going," Weitz explained. "He's going to take it in whatever way he wants to because he's his own guy and will have his own style and particular take on things, but just as I was inheriting certain things from Catherine Hardwicke, he's going to inherit certain things from me and make the choice as to whether he wants to keep them or alter them."

" We've had discussions," he continued. "Tippett is going to do the wolves for Eclipse so that there's a continuity in terms of the look of the werewolves, and obviously the cast is going to remain the same; so Dakota is Jane, and all the Volturi are the same people that we're familiar with."


THE BIG QUESTION: WOULD WEITZ COME BACK FOR BREAKING DAWN?

Despite the fact that only a handful of stills and a teaser trailer have debuted for New Moon, fans are already speculating on whether or not Weitz would return to direct the fourth film, Breaking Dawn. Will he consider taking the reins again?

"I think it's really charming that, not having seen New Moon, people would be enthusiastic about me wanting to do Breaking Dawn," Weitz said, partly humble, and perhaps partly remembering the tumultuous experience he had when his last would-be franchise, Phillip Pullman's The Golden Compass, didn't make it to subsequent sequels. "I think the proof is in the pudding, and they should see New Moon before they decide if they want me to do anything else to do with their series. But I would hope to earn that kind of rumor."

While he passed on directing the third Twilight film out of sheer pragmatism, the possibility of Weitz directing Breaking Dawn remains open. "I haven't really spoken with Summit about that; all I knew was that I was going to be too tired to do Eclipse, and that it was better that somebody else take it over as well so that they could put their own imprint on it. Also, the way the films are being shot [in rapid succession] would have precluded it anyway."


THE BIGGER QUESTION: IS BREAKING DAWN EVEN FILMABLE?

It's unsurprising that Breaking Dawn -- the fourth and final book in Meyer's Twilight series -- is still without a director. Although producers insist it's still in the works, Breaking Dawn is unconfirmed by the studio, and it's not difficult to guess why: with more than a few mature and controversial storylines and a potentially large dependency on expensive computer graphics, Breaking Dawn might be the most difficult Twilight installment to film and market. But Weitz is optimistic.

"It's a tough one," he admitted, mulling the thought of directing Breaking Dawn. "It's a hard one, because the series gets more and more ambitious as it goes along." Some might wonder if it could be pulled off altogether. Weitz paused for thought. "Yes, it's doable; anything is doable."

So, would he go on the record with his official interest in Breaking Dawn? "I'd certainly consider it," he confirmed.
Then again, Weitz knows that fan sentiment could easily turn against him and newer director Slade could become a popular front runner, quipping, "by the time [Eclipse] comes out they'll probably want him to direct Breaking Dawn, not me."


What do you think, Twilighters? With Weitz and his New Moon cast set to appear (and debut footage) at next week's Comic-Con, fans will soon get more of an idea of if New Moon will deliver or not... do you want Weitz to return for Breaking Dawn?

Check back tomorrow (Friday) for our in-depth New Moon set report!

 

Details on New Moon at Comic-Con:

The Twilight Saga: New Moon panel will be held Thursday, July 23 (1:45 - 2:45 PM in Hall H) and will be followed by a Special Screening Event hosted by Summit Entertainment.

From Summit: "Screening tickets are $10 and can only be purchased online at Fandango (www.fandango.com, beginning 9:00am-9:30am PST Monday) and picked up at the theater prior to the event. Multiple staggered showings of TWILIGHT will take place at the Pacific Gaslamp 15. Doors open at 5:30 and fans with tickets will be admitted on a first-come, first-seated basis. The Pacific Gaslamp 15 is located at 701 5th Ave., just a few blocks from the Convention Center. Two tickets per person limit.

Comments

Carly B.

Carly B

YES! WE WANT CHRIS WEITZ TO DIRECT BREAKING DAWN. I honestly feel he is the only one who could do it justice. It has a lot of the same themes as New Moon and I think Chris' devotion to and understanding of the series, not to mention is intelligence, laid-back nature, and directorial talent, can be unmatched by any other director for this particular series of books. Additionally, he is a father and would most likely understand that element of Breaking Dawn more than someone who did not have children of their own. I hope hope hope they offer the job to him! He'd be perfect!

Jul 16 - 03:56 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

Meh, we'll see I wasn't terribly impressed with The Golden Compass. Lets see what he comes up with for this one.

Jul 16 - 04:17 PM

Chris E.

Chris Eichhorn

Golden Compass was a great movie - why didn't you like it?

Jul 17 - 04:09 PM

Jake007

Jake Sundstrom

I don't think that most people enjoyed The Golden Compass (40 something percent on RT), so I can hardly call his views surprising.

I am still not a fan of the series and have yet to see a good reason to do so. The 'vampires' are dull, and this 'reimagination' that Meyer has given us is laughable at best. Kristen Stewart, as well as Pattinson both have potential - as we have seen in Adventureland and The Goblet of Fire respectively. However, whether it be the poor writing (and it is poor) or directing, or whatever it is that made them look so awful in the first film they're really going to need to make an effort to turn this series around.

Also, I think that it is arrogant to state that Twilight launched the success of Paramore, they were quite popular well before the release of the film.

The contracting of Alexandre Desplant is interesting though - I loved his work in Benjamin Button, so perhaps there is hope? And we do have Michael Sheen to cheer for... I am less than optimistic about the outcome of New Moon (especially based on that awful teaser trailer) but it would be nice if they were able to jump over the hurdle of the last film's lack of quality and put out an excellent film.

Jul 17 - 04:36 PM

Katie B.

Katie B

The only thing I agree to in your review is the fact that Twilight did NOT, in fact, launch the success of Paramore. Ever heard of Misery Business? You can't get on freaking Guitar Hero because you are on the Twilight Soundtrack.

Jul 17 - 06:58 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

Sorry it took me a bit to get back to you, Golden Compass while I didn't feel it was a bad movie just felt mediocre to me. The agenda at the beginning was a bit heavy handed, I wasn't able to connect with most of the characters or their plight and most importantly I didn't get that sense of wonder that pervades all the really great works of fantasy fiction. It just felt a bit cold and sterile to me. With the exeption of the armored polar bear and flying witch archer scenes which were definately the highpoints of the movie. There just weren't enough of those scene's for me and I know it's wrong to badmouth a child, but I didn't find Lyra a compelling heroine at all. That in a nutshell is why I didn't like it. I thought it could have been deserving of a chance to improve with a sequal (It's certainly better than a lot of stuff that's gotten numerous sequals), but I'm not heartbroken if it doesn't. As I say I didn't hate it I'm just indifferent to it.

Jul 18 - 03:14 PM

alisonb

alison black

I'd rather a new director for Breaking Dawn. Juan Antonio Bayona would be my preferred choice. Certainly not Slade thats for sure. He's a crass heavy handed director.

I wish they'd stop trying to force feed us a love triangle. Any reader of the books will know there is no such triangle in New Moon so for that reason alone Weitz/Rosenberg and Summit arent exactly at the top of my xmas card list.

I love the choice of composer for New Moon. Desplat's work on Girl With a Pearl Earring is one of my favourite soundtracks. I have high hopes for his work on New Moon.

I hope the mid section of New Moon has been trimmed significantly. Endless motorbike repair scenes with Bell and Jacob will send me to sleep. Lets hurry up and get to Italy where the most interesting scenes will take place.

Jul 16 - 04:24 PM

Michael G.

Michael Garay

You hit it right on the head. I have the audio and am on my third reading/listening.There are four CDs devoted to bike repairs.I skip them and go to the cliff jumping section.Let's see, 4 out of 12 is 1/3 of the story can be omitted. Good call.

Jul 17 - 09:02 AM

tomwaitsjrHAPPYICONOCLAST

Greg Guro

Thom Yorke?

*cries* no. . . no. . . please no. . .

How about Duran Duran's "NEW MOON ON MONDAY" instead? That's a pretty cool song. . .

Jul 16 - 04:25 PM

Jen Yamato

Jen Yamato

Tomwaitsjr! Nice reference. Tim Ryan actually made it the other day! My forthcoming New Moon column will be named on some variation of that...

Jul 16 - 04:31 PM

Kerry H.

Kerry H

GREAT article, Jen--I'm so glad to finally read the interview!

I think I'll agree with Weitz on this one--while the stills and teaser look great, I'd like to reserve full judgment until I've seen New Moon in its entirety. I have a positive feeling, though, and I really hope the final product lives up to that.

Everything he's said here makes me hopeful that he did a good job staying true to the books and what the fans want to see--it seems like he knows which parts are most important and he's paying attention to that. As long as he keeps that up, fans will be clamoring for him to direct BD!

Very much looking forward to hearing about the rest of the set visit!

Jul 16 - 04:36 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

I think this series more than most adaptions needs to be true to the books. The fans are so rabid if they deviated too far my moneys on someone getting ganked by a 15 year old girl who's legally changed her name to Bella.

Jul 16 - 04:47 PM

tomwaitsjrHAPPYICONOCLAST

Greg Guro

Thanks Jen!

Everything I do, I do it for you!

Jul 16 - 04:48 PM

Tina P.

Tina Perez

We will see i guess!!!!!Can't wait~

Jul 16 - 05:39 PM

Shauna R.

Shauna Rutherford

I say to stay true to Breaking Dawn they are going to have to pull a Deathly Hallows and split it into two movies. I mean geez, Breaking Dawn has so much stuff going on! I think someone should start a petition. Who's with me?!

Jul 16 - 06:16 PM

JettaJameson

James Lowell

What is it with you fangirls and petitions?! So pointless. Move on.

I'm very excited for New Moon. I hope CW delivers a top-noch product.

Jul 17 - 11:30 AM

Michael G.

Michael Garay

New to RT. Great article by Jen Yamato. Thanks Jen. As to comments so far, I read many of the Twilight sites and comments. When Chris was named to replace Katherine, the huey and cry from fans was emotional. "He better not screw up NM", etc. When David was announced as Director of Eclypes, he antagonized most of the fans with foot-in-mouth comments about the Saga. Several critics feel that BD cannot be made; Reneesme (Nesi)cannot be recreated, the birth scene is to graphic, blah blah blah. Chris told Jen,"Yes, it's doable; anything is doable." I like his attitude. Shauna wrote in her comment that to stay true to BD they are going to have to pull a Deathly Hallows and split it into two movies. I just sat through Half-blood Prince. 2 hours and 48 minutes and it still left out many of the scenes from the book. I agree with Shauna.

Jul 16 - 09:49 PM

Michael G.

Michael Garay

What do you guys think of the news that Stephenie is going to co-write the screenplay? Is that good, bad or do you care?

Jul 16 - 09:59 PM

Jen Yamato

Jen Yamato

Thanks for posting, all! I agree, Chris Weitz' attitude toward New Moon, and even Breaking Dawn, is downright positive. Makes it easy to root for him to succeed with his leg of the franchise. (I'll be posting detailed observations from the New Moon set Friday, by the way.)

Michael G.: thanks for coming here as a new reader. It's interesting, this idea that you and Shauna discuss, about splitting Breaking Dawn into 2 films. The problem I see with Breaking Dawn, however, isn't that too much happens in it (yes, a lot happens) but that the particulars of the events are difficult to depict on screen. I won't go into spoilers here, but you probably know what I'm talking about.

However, to address your second comment: I don't believe Stephenie Meyer is co-scripting any of the Twilight films. Melissa Rosenberg definitely scripted New Moon and Eclipse (which she discussed with us on set, in a forthcoming interview).

Jul 17 - 01:40 AM

kaushik i.

kaushik iska

yeah @ bigbrother goldent compass wasnt really impressive
lets see what he does to this flick.

Jul 17 - 02:24 AM

Alicia F.

Alicia Franklin

I am much more optimistic about the outcome of New Moon after reading this interview with Chris Weitz. He sounds like an intelligent and sensitive director who has a healthy respect for the source material. I am heartened that he seems to realize that the series is primarily an epic love story. If this is the case, I think he would be a great choice to direct Breaking Dawn. (Though, I still think BD would be better filmed by HBO as a season long series rather than a 90 minute theatrical movie.)

I am really looking forward to seeing New Moon now. Best of luck to the director and his crew in editing the film.

Jul 17 - 08:21 AM

Michael G.

Michael Garay

Interesting proposal to put BD on HBO. Do you think that Summit would have grossed over $350m in revenue if Twilight was on HBO? What about DVD sales? HBO has limited, albeit fanatic, following. Not everyone has HBO.Everyone can go to the theater. I saw Twilight 3 times at the cinema.I suspect that figure pales by comparison to 15 year-old girls with a crush on Edward.

Jul 17 - 08:48 AM

Michael G.

Michael Garay

Jen, your interview with Chris is all over the Twilight Blog world. You are getting much love. Good job. I am new to this forum. I did read where Stphenie was teaming with Melissa to write the screeenplay for BD but after researching the many sites, I cannot find the article. I will do a better job of documenting news for next time.You are in the mainstream, please find out if Melissa is doing BD. Many twifans have trashed her but I think she did a fine job with Twilight. Keep up the good work.

Jul 17 - 08:28 AM

Michael G.

Michael Garay

Interesting proposal to put BD on HBO. Do you think that Summit would have grossed over $350m in revenue if Twilight was on HBO? What about DVD sales? HBO has limited, albeit fanatic, following. Not everyone has HBO.Everyone can go to the theater. I saw Twilight 3 times at the cinema.I suspect that figure pales by comparison to 15 year-old girls with a crush on Edward.

Jul 17 - 08:48 AM

Michael G.

Michael Garay

You hit it right on the head. I have the audio and am on my third reading/listening.There are four CDs devoted to bike repairs.I skip them and go to the cliff jumping section.Let's see, 4 out of 12 is 1/3 of the story can be omitted. Good call.

Jul 17 - 09:02 AM

JettaJameson

James Lowell

What is it with you fangirls and petitions?! So pointless. Move on.

I'm very excited for New Moon. I hope CW delivers a top-noch product.

Jul 17 - 11:30 AM

acton acton

matt hall

Yeah why dont you get some bands that actually like vampires and have songs about them already, get rid of these teeny bop songs, look away from the MTV and get Blutengel or Unter Null. America is being dumbed down by listening to the only thing you play for them, Paramor? Patinsen? He is in the movie we dont need to hear his bad brittish voice and bad guitar playing, which brings me to my final point, guitars are dead, computers and EBM are the new age, hell we got it on such bands as any R&B, singers just need to get rid of the people that write these songs, 60 year old record execs. Industrial, EBM is the way to go, way more variety of sounds, voice processors to enhance or change ones voice, multiple drum sounds, all instruments can be played and distorted. Even guitars can be changed to sound like the future should be. .... the movie looks better and I believe will get better as they go on. Still, no fangs? Sunlight? I put up with the change but They really are not vamps, they are just immortal beings that happen to need blood to live. Lets call them zombies with brains. or simply put demons with feelings.

Jul 17 - 01:02 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

Call me old fashioned, but I'll take Jimmy Hendrix or Jimmy Page ripping on their ax than someone typing away at their keyboard ala Poindexter from Revenge of the Nerds. The Guitar and it's music like rock and roll will never die.

Jul 17 - 01:22 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

"they are just immortal beings that happen to need blood to live"... what exactly do you think a vampire is?

Jul 17 - 01:24 PM

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