Every so often a film franchise comes along which strikes a chord with a section of the population and becomes hugely popular overnight. In the late 1970s it was the Star Wars series of films, and later on Indiana Jones and the Lord of the Rings movies drew massive box office audiences too. The most recent of these sorts of films has been the Twilight films, based around the lives of a group of young vampires.
The novels on which the films are based have been popular with teenagers and young adults since the first one in the series came out in 2003. There are four novels in the Twilight series and these have been split into five movies for cinema purposes. In recent years the author of the Twilight novels, Stephenie Meyer, is second in earnings only to Harry Potter writer JK Rowling. With the novels proving such a success with the teenage and young adult target market, it is hardly a surprise that the rights to turn them into movies were quickly snapped up.
The first movie in the Twilight series hit cinema screens in 2008. The three main stars of the movies, Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattison and Taylor Lautner had had small parts in movies such as Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and Panic Room, but none were established movie stars. Given that the main characters in the books were young, it is perhaps not surprising that relatively unknown leading actors were chosen. The first movie was an instant hit and each subsequent installment in the series has enjoyed increased advertising budgets, hype and box office revenues. The three young actors who take the starring roles are now household names and have made staggering amounts of money.
The success of the Twilight movies has raised the profiles of everything vampire related and as well as boosting the sales of the movie related merchandise, it has also increased interest in anything and everything gothic and alternative. Gothic clothing online sales have boomed with people looking for a fashionable and interesting outfit for a fancy dress party or night out, and people who wear this sort of clothing are no longer considered weird or unusual. Certain aspects of the trend have passed into the mainstream of fashion and although buying gothic clothing online is still the easiest option, there are plenty of high street stores stocking similar clothing.
The interest in Twilight has more or less reached its peak and there are no more books left to be filmed. However, vampires have been around in literature and film for far longer than Twilight, and it won’t be long before the next generation of readers and viewers are getting into a new range of books about the blood sucking undead. In the meantime, teenagers who have only ever read the Twilight books could do worse than read the Dracula or Interview with a Vampire Books and there are also a whole host of vampire movies such as The Lost Boys or Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
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