How “Eclipse” Will Even Cover Over “New Moon”

Last November "New Moon" rocked the U.S. box office with $142 million. Studio Summit Entertainment has even greater hopes for its next chapter, "Eclipse," which opens in theaters at 12:01 Wednesday.

So how do the filmmakers expect to grow their audience (and box office) beyond it's rabid following --- in the third film?

"Eclipse" Producer Wyck Godfrey tells PopcornBiz that people are able to get onto the "Twilight" bandwagon well beyond the initial release of the films. At this point, folks can get hooked on the books, the movies, the DVD releases and the television viewings of the film.

"We're speaking to the evolved 'Twilight' audience," says Godfrey. "The fortunate thing about 'Eclipse' is that it's coming on the heels of the greatest access to the world of the 'Twilight.' " 

That's an advantage for a third film that even trumps the initial craziness that came in the first, pop-culture-altering film, "Twilight,"  which Godfrey also produced. At that point it was a rabid -- but contained -- audience.

"The audience we were going for in 'Twilight' were the people that had read the books and loved the books," he says. "Now there have been two other movies in theaters and out on DVD."

With multiple access points, even more people are bound to get pulled into the craziness and the enthusiasm. This could even be seen by the need to move the "Eclipse" premiere to downtown Los Angeles to accommodate the growing legions of zealous fans who camp out for days for a good spot near the red carpet.

Besides the fans, Godfrey even counts in a small population of the just curious who will be drawn to the box office.

"There will be a minority of people that are curious because its summer and they have heard about the movie about this girl Bella and Edward and Jacob," says Godfrey.

Seriously, have these people been living under a rock? Either way, they are welcome into the "Twilight" tent. With "Eclipse" getting some of the best initial reviews of any film in the series, they might just enjoy the ride.

"If you knew just the basics like Edward and Bella, then you would be able to appreciate this film," says Godfrey.

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