Twihards Break Records at “Breaking Dawn” Premiere

By Kim Giordano

Molly Morin and Katelyn Hurley/ Courtesy of Alissa Mesibov

The fourth installment of the Twilight Series, “Breaking Dawn – Part 1” was released in theatres, but many couldn’t wait for the weekend. On Thursday night (or in some cases, day), die-hard fans of the series lined up hours before the midnight premiere, bringing board games and snacks to keep them occupied while they anxiously waited. The movie had a $139 million weekend opening, making it the fifth largest of all time. The franchise managed to sell $30 million for the midnight premiere alone! I asked when movie goers purchased their tickets and many people got them weeks in advance, if not months.

The Cinemark at Hampshire mall had several theatres showing the movie, as well as varying start times such as, 12:05 AM, 12:10 AM, and 12:15 AM, to accommodate the high volume of audiences. The line to get a good seat went far back into the mall itself, and if you wanted to be one of the first in line, you’d have to get there hours before.

Since those in the middle of the line arrived at the movie theatre a considerable amount of time before the movie’s actual start time, I was very curious to know what time those first in line got there. Molly Morin and Katelyn Hurley are apart of two different groups of friends that met at the first “Twilight” midnight premiere, and have been seeing the movies with each other ever since. Katelyn actually drove one and a half hours to get to Hadley, just to attend the midnight premiere. What time did they get to The Cinemark to secure their prime spots? 6:30 AM! Molly and Katelyn didn’t seem fazed by the early time whatsoever, they were just happy they were going to get great seats for the movie.

Fans sported their favorite characters of the series on t-shirts, most commonly indicated if they were “Team Edward” or “Team Jacobm” a heated debate between “twihards.” In “Breaking Dawn”, however, Bella’s choice is clear and she and the fans get what they’ve been waiting the whole saga for: a fairytale vampire and human wedding. Unanimously, the most anticipated moments of the film were the wedding and honeymoon scenes, and judging by gasps and “aws” that emanated from the audience, I think that the filmmakers did a pretty good job in pleasing the fans.

Everyone that I talked to was not only a huge fan of the movies, but they had also loved the books. Many read the entire series before the first movie even hit theaters, but others picked it up after becoming intrigued by seeing the film. Most of the people at the premiere were college aged (I saw girls from UMass, Smith, Mt. Holyoke), younger girls, and the occasional miserable looking boyfriend that was clearly dragged there by an avid fan. More commonly though, there were groups of mothers, without daughters! The women like to refer to themselves as “Twi-moms” and love the saga just as much as your average teenage girl. One group of twi-moms I talked to, were very enthusiastic about taking sides (the group was split, one half loved Jacob and the other Edward). When I asked what drew them so much to the books and movies that they attended the midnight premiere, the answer was unanimous: the romance.

Critics may destroy the series of movies in reviews and it may not be cinematic art, but the devoted fans will continue to line up hours before, just to get a good seat. The fan base is what makes the films into such a success story; allowing millions of dollars in ticket sales to rack up and sold out theaters throughout the country. Brace yourself for Part 2, it can only get crazier from here.

Kim Giordano can be reached at [email protected]