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LAFF 2010: Dispatches from the land of Rob Pattinson and the 'Twilight: Eclipse' premiere

June 24, 2010 | 10:45 pm

Downtown Los Angeles saw some of the same fan pandemonium tonight as it did last Thursday -- only there wasn't a Lakers player in sight. (Well, except for Ron Artest.)

He and hundreds of screaming fans turned out to see the world premiere of "The Twilight Saga: Eclipse" and greet the cast of the film, the fans shouting an uncomplicated "Rob! Rob! Rob!" as they waited for Rob Pattinson -- Edward Cullen, of course, in the franchise -- to make his way to the theater.

Indeed, all of the vamps and werewolves (including Kristen Stewart, Taylor Lautner, Kellan Lutz, Ashley Greene and almost everyone else from the cast) walked the red carpet as the electric (read: camping-out-for-days) fans stood by at the premiere that's playing as part of -- or is it adjacent to? -- the Los Angeles Film Festival. The fans wore their hearts on their sleeves, as well as on their shirts, caps and posters (sample messages: "I want to play 'Pat the Pattinson,' " "My heart goes nutz for Lutz" and the cut-to-the-chase "Taylor take off your shirt now!"). Meanwhile, a host of celebs walked the red carpet, including Artest, Kim Kardashian, Jennifer Love Hewitt and various "Dancing With the Stars" alumni.

It wasn't exactly the kind of fanfare typical of the films screened at the festival (which is sponsored by the Los Angeles Times). The very fact of the premiere, indeed, has raised some questions. Though the screening of the Summit film brings in scores of celebrities and press attention, it also runs the risk of alienating the festival's core clientele of indie-film fans.

The Twi-hards at the premiere, however, weren't paying much mind to that -- they were too busy juggling markers, books and cameras. And as Pattinson made his way down the carpet in a sleek maroon suit, they jumped and screamed with excitement -- something that Pattinson acknowledged makes him a bit anxious.

"It's still such a struggle in the car on the way here," Pattinson confessed to us on the red carpet. "I'm like, 'I can't breathe. I can't breathe.' "

-- Yvonne Villarreal

Photo: Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson in the "Twilight" franchise. Credit: Summit Entertainment [For the Record: An earlier version of this caption incorrectly identified Robert Pattinson as Taylor Lautner.]


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'Eclipse' is a bloodbath for the Cullens

'Twilight' writer Melissa Rosenberg talks Kristen Stewart, Bill Condon and Breaking Dawn

The Cheat Sheet: Eclipse