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Can a studio create a new 'Twilight' (and could someone like Amanda Seyfried be the new Kristen Stewart)?

February 17, 2010 | 10:28 pm

Maybe the only people who embrace "Twilight" and "New Moon" more than Twi-hards are Hollywood executives, who have been feverishly trying to develop the next "Twilight," or at least re-position movies they have as the second coming of same. (Universal tried that a few months ago with a movie called "Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant," which didn't work out so well.)

Twi Now Warner Bros. appears to be making strides toward getting its own Gothic story of werewolves and young-woman-in-peril closer to the screen -- and with the director of "Twilight," no less.

The company has been developing a movie called "The Girl With the Red Riding Hood," a modern-day spin on the Brothers Grimm story from Leonardo DiCaprio's production company, since last year. In December, the studio entered a holding deal -- basically an arrangement in which the director and studio commit to each other exclusively for a set period of time -- with Catherine Hardwicke, the filmmaker behind "Twilight" who parted ways with the studio for "New Moon."

As that deal comes due this month, it's increasingly looking like "Girl With the Red Riding Hood" will move forward with Hardwicke. There's also plenty of other momentum:  The studio has a new version of the script, which "Orphan" writer David Johnson has been working on the last several months. And producers are starting to go out to cast, with Amanda Seyfried -- fresh off her "Dear John" turn and with at least one girl-oriented dark role, "Jennifer's Body," under her belt -- one of the few names the studio would like to hook.

Hard The story is an update of Little Red Riding Hood, with the requisite dark/dangerous/romantic elements that can appeal to "Twilight" fans -- while also attracting audiences who simply like the fairy tale. (The script has gotten high marks from power players around town, who describe it as elevated genre material a la this weekend's "Shutter Island.") True, "Riding Hood" doesn't have Kristen Stewart, Taylor Lautner or Robert Pattinson playing Bella, Jacob or Edward -- but then those stars were made by "Twilight," not the other way around.

The biggest thing working against the Warner Bros. movie may be that that it doesn't derive from Stephenie Meyer's global bestsellers but from the work of a couple of German academics circa the early 19th century. But when it comes to finding the next "Twilight," these may be mere details.

--Steven Zeitchik

Photos: Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart in "Twilight." Credit: Summit Entertainment. Catherine Hardwicke. Credit:  Stefano Paltera / Los Angeles Times

Comments () | Archives (7)

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That is ridiculous and horrible to just even imagine them doing something like that.

I'm not into Twilight but this sounds awesome. Seyfried is very talented. I hope it happens.

Well, in the first place I think Seyfried is more talented than Stewart, so i don't get the point in saying "could someone like Amanda Seyfried be the new Kristen Stewart?". She engages with different complex roles and manages to give an effective performance in every role she plays.

I think Seyfried is very talented and a versatile actress, who is smart enough to focus more to hone her skills more than aiming for fame. While most of young actresses in her age use their looks more than their talents and are just up to being famous!

So I think, it would be cool to see her in a different role again!

I don't understand. The "spookiness" of Twilight was not what made it popular. It was the teen romance angle. Whoever's making the movie out to be like this clearly has no understanding of even the most basic principles.

The depressing thing is that the concept is pretty interesting, Seyfried is very talented (as well as hot, in a classy sort of way), and the script very well may be good, but Hardwicke has no talent as a film-maker. Twilight was so amateur and awkwardly shot. The cinematography was so poor that it made sitting through the movie a pain for anyone who wasn't struck dumb by Pattinson's face. Almost all of the Twilight movie's popularity came from its source material.

If the wolf isn't a villain, then I've had it: I'm starting an ethnic cleansing of Hollywood. It will be purged of its current PR workers. All of them.

With this being a Warner Brothers film it might be okay. If it was a FOX movies I would already know to avoid it. FOX makes the worst movies ever.
Percy Jackson was terrible. I have wasted so much time and money on their movies and every time I see anything for The C-Team.....erm.....I mean the A-team......I just shake my head.

I have no love for the Twilight movies.

Kristin Stewart's acting in Twilight (we'll have to see how she does in The Runaways) is very awkward, and cannot be compared to Amanda Seyfried.

Publishing articles comparing this Riding Hood movie to Twilight will turn off a lot of people. It would be more promoting if you said, it could be a great franchise.

Anyway, as long as they don't get incompetent actors (or actors not fitting the role), and it has a not-shallow and not-Twilight script...This could be great.

The concept of the movie seems interesting, but the concept of casting Seyfried is not. I have nothing against the actress, in fact, I always think she is exceptionally talented and I don't want to see her waste her greatness in this movie. They should cast teenagers to lead the movie just like what they did in Twilight! And they should not cast an already established and respected actress like her.

She should say yes to roles that will challenge her more as an actress. Personally, I thought she made the biggest mistake leaving BIG LOVE. The show actually gives her the chance to show off her impressive versatility and depth! If she prefers to do movies now, she should choose projects that will enhance her acting chops more, than choosing "chick-flick" films. So basically, I think she's too great for this Red Riding Hood thing!


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