This Will Not Stand

The product of an extensive preening regimenAs you may have heard, “New Moon” made a great deal of money this past weekend, scoring an opening gross of $140.7 million — the third biggest opening ever, behind “The Dark Knight” and “Spider-Man 3”. The lesson here? Never underestimate the power of teenage girls and their babysitting money.

Of course, if that was really all it took, then the Jonas Brothers concert picture would have been just as massive, and that horrible live-action “Bratz” movie would have been the top film of 2007.

No, there’s got to be something else at work here. I’m seriously considering establishing a foundation to research the phenomenon, and look for a cure. Come on, people — let’s see if we can’t beat this thing before “Eclipse” opens next summer!

5 thoughts on “This Will Not Stand”

  1. To me, there’s no mystery how this happened. Any movie that has a built-in, obsessive fanbase (AKA ‘geeks’, ‘nerds’, or labels specific to the object of fandom eg. ‘Trekkies,’ ‘browncoats,) said fandon usually originating in previous films or whatever medium the film is adapted from, will always have a big debut. That’s why adaptations of superhero comics or cartoons (Transformers, G.I. Joe) get big hits up front at the box office.
    I guess the unique thing about Twilight is it appeals to females, mostly tween and teen females, whereas movies with devoted fanbases usually have men (especially men between 20-40) as the core of that fanbase.

  2. Since I spend my entire day with girls in the 11-15 range, I can state with some confidence that Bratz was aimed at girls too young to have babysitting money.

    I think the Jonas Brothers movie happened after they’d already jumped the shark. It’s all Justin Bieber, all the time here now.

  3. I know a 40 year old mother of 3 who went to see New Moon this weekend because she just caught Twilight last week on TMN and enjoyed it as a guilty pleasure. My guess is this is at least a 2 quadrant movie (as the evil marketing wizards like to say).
    Because the media has now told everyone this is a cultural phenomenon, I’m predicting it hold as number one for at least another week as the mildly curious check it out as well. Plus, the fangirls will need to see it again!

  4. I can confirm from playground chatter that the Moms are into Twilight too.

    SteveB: the counterexample to your theory is the less-than-stellar opening of the Firefly movie.

  5. I heard on TV that the audience for New Moon was 50/50 under and over 21. That approximately backs up what I saw with book sales/requests for the series. I don’t see the appeal for numerous reasons, but plenty of women do. While romance as a genre has expanded greatly and often features stronger female characters than it used to, I’m going to hazard a guess that Twilight fans may be more likely to read more romance than fantasy or horror when they grow up (although the mixed genre of supernatural romance is huge right now).

    But please don’t even wish to stop Eclipse and Breaking Dawn. I am looking forward to renting them for home versions of Mystery Science Theater, just like I did with Twilight. Selfish of me, I know, given the message they send impressionable girls, but I’m hoping they learn to see them ironically. Less chance of that, though, if Mom is also swooning over them.

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