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Biting Back

5 Mar, 2010 By: Chris Tribbey

Chris Weitz on the New Moon set

After seeing lines around the block for the successful midnight launch of the Twilight DVD last March, Chris Weitz, director of The Twilight Saga: New Moon, is hoping for two things when the sequel is released at midnight March 20.

First, he wants Summit Entertainment’s $706 million worldwide box office hit to surpass the 3 million units sold for Twilight on the first day of its home video release in the United States, and the more than 9 million sold to date.

And second?

“I’m hoping for no injuries,” Weitz said. “You can’t fly in [lead actor] Robert Pattinson to one of these events and not expect a few broken windows.”

Summit is expecting an estimated 6,000 retailers nationwide to keep their doors open late on New Moon Saturday to accommodate the demand for the DVD ($32.99) and Blu-ray Disc ($34.99), and like for Twilight last year, actors from the film are expected to make surprise appearances at some of the larger events. In Hollywood for the Twilight release, some fans said they waited in line nearly a full day to get their DVD and their chance to see cast members.

“Of course I hope there will be a lot of excitement for this release,” Weitz said. “When the fans own it, and have their chance to pore through all the details, they’ll be pleasantly surprised.”

Wal-Mart, Best Buy and Target all have their own unique exclusives, ranging from film cels to steelbook packaging, for those who buy New Moon at their stores. But even the standard-issue DVD and Blu-ray releases have tons of extras to excite fans, Weitz said.

A revealing, extensive six-part documentary is the highlight, showing fans how the film was made. An audio commentary with director Chris Weitz and editor Peter Lambert, rehearsal footage with music artists Muse, and three music videos from Death Cab for Cutie, Anya Marina and Mute Math round out the bonuses.

“For me it wasn’t a tremendous amount of work,” Weitz said of the documentary. “It’s always fun to experience what you’re doing and why you’re doing it.”

As for the commentary, Weitz said it was disappointing that none of the actors could join in — they had other work to get to — but that fans will love the musical additions to the home video releases.

As for that cliffhanger ending?

“Readers of the books understand,” he said. “I always wanted that moment to be the end of the film. The entire film is meant to be built around that.”

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