You didn’t really think that a barrage of negative reviews and some seriously crappy CGI werewolves were going to prevent hordes of teenage Twi-hards from storming the multiplex to see New Moon, did you? The film has grossed an astronomical $230 million domestically and an even more outrageous $473 million worldwide in its first ten days of release, a total that has changed the perception of director Chris Weitz from a penis-having, pie-humping franchise destroyer to a near-deity in the eyes of his employers at Summit Entertainment. So now, in a vainglorious attempt to keep their cash cow producing, Variety is reporting that Summit is not only considering splitting the franchise’s fourth book, Breaking Dawn, into two films, but also that Weitz is their preferred choice to helm both of the sequels!
Now, before you head over to Fandango to preorder your tickets for Breaking Dawn: Pt. 1 and Breaking Dawn 2: Still Breaking, you should know that there are a few obstacles in the way of this money-grubbing dream coming to fruition. First, all of the franchise principals are only contracted to do four films, which means that Summit would likely have to pay through the nose to get the likes of K. Stew, R. Pattz, and Crazy Legs Lautner to do a fifth film. This probably isn’t that big of a deal, though, as Warner Bros. already set a precedent in this arena when they decided to expand their Harry Potter series (and those films show no signs of slowing down).
However, what of Weitz? In the days leading up to New Moon’s release, much was made of comments he made to Moviemaker magazine about wanting to retire from the film business so he could spend the rest of his days catching some gnarly waves and fluently speaking español. But now that his film has outgrossed Twilight in ten short days, he’s in high demand and is in a position of strength. In fact, he’s so secure that Summit is reportedly looking to appease the mercurial director by agreeing to finance a much smaller passion project called The Gardener, a film he could shoot upon completion of the two proposed Breaking Dawn films. We sincerely hope that Weitz ends up getting his way, mainly because we’d like to see how he could possibly incorporate a pie fornication scene into a film about a dude with a green thumb and a never-ending supply of Garden Weasels.
Summit Ponders Twilight Finale [Variety]