Comic-Con: Bill Condon Talks Twilight Breaking Dawn, Horror, Rating, Intensity

by Anne Thompson
July 21, 2011 10:30 AM
5 Comments
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Thompson on Hollywood
Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn kicked off Comic-Con as the fans who had started lining up on Sunday finally got into the first Comic-Con panel in Hall H Thursday morning after an early breakfast and visit from the cast, including stars Kristen Stewart and Rob Pattinson, who signed autographs and took pictures with the twihards. As the stars gave a press conference, I sat down with director Bill Condon for a flip cam interview, below.

Condon (Dreamgirls) had been eager to direct a horror movie, and landed the finale to this mother of all horror epics, which he and Summit agreed to break into two parts, Harry Potter-style. "It's all third act, which does make it easy," he says, "and scary too, there are some pretty crazy things." Condon will find out next week, when he shows his cut of Breaking Dawn, Part One to the ratings board, whether the penultimate Twilight film, which opens November 18, will earn an R or a PG-13. The scene where Bella and Edward have sex for the first time features some nudity, and when she gives birth to their baby, there's blood flying around the room, he says, although "there's more in the area of suggestion. It's up to them to decide." In any case, the movie will be PG-13, Summit confirms.

More details and spoilers below for those who have not read the books.

Condon says he went for grown-up emotion here--aimed squarely at Twilight's female audience. If Catherine Hardwicke was able to channel the teen POV in the first film, Condon is revealing the couple as adults: falling in love, getting married, living together, having a child, "set against a big mass-market studio movie," he says.

But, befitting a vampire/human liaison, they don't have your ordinary kid; they have no idea what is growing super-fast inside Bella, eating away at her--and in the next installment, Bella becomes a vampire. Condon is relieved that he and Summit finally decided not to shoot the final film in 3-D. In the arena of dramatic intense emotion, 2-D works best, he says.

At the Hall H panel, the cast praised Condon's handling of that scene, which many readers of the book have speculated about how it would be done. It's where the entire series was heading, and puts Bella and Edward into a situation beyond their control. Pattinson talked about how much he enjoyed playing more human emotions, like bonding with a baby, which requires "improvising," he said.

One Summit exec who's seen the film says she cried five times, especially during Bella and Edward's wedding; the clip shown in Hall H of their moonlit honeymoon in Rio was delightful, as Bella and Edward decide to take a nude swim. In Hall H one questioner complimented Pattinson on his back muscles. "I love you," another girl told Lautner. As always, frequent screams interrupted the proceedings.


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5 Comments

  • olli | August 9, 2011 6:34 AMReply

    Honestly, calling the Twilight movies "this mother of all horror epics" made me laugh out loud.
    Yesterday I just saw "Eclipse" and even director David Slade (30 days of night) wasn´t able to instill even the tiniest bit of horror into this mess. I'm still wondering how they manage to make that many bucks on something so boring...

  • Angela | August 9, 2011 4:56 AMReply

    Anne Thompson! You're so adorable! I love your interviews.

  • Mark | July 23, 2011 8:29 AMReply

    Why are you covering garbage like Twilight instead of Ridley Scott and Prometheus?

  • twopeas1pod | July 23, 2011 2:23 AMReply

    This is one of the most insightful interviews I have ever seen related to Twilight. Amazing questions and followup. Really delved into things and showed up the passion Bill feels for this project. Amazing. Thank you!

  • mary | July 22, 2011 1:02 AMReply

    I guess Summit will release the R-rated version of "Breaking Dawn" on home video and TV.

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