Lionsgate Announces Plans For 5 ‘Twilight’ Mini-Movies

Just when you thought it was safe to stop making jokes about Twilight, Lionsgate has found a way to milk their $3.5 billion dollar franchise a tiny bit more.

Today, the studio that made Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson household names announced plans to partner with Twilight series author Stephenie Meyer to select five aspiring female filmmakers to direct a series of shorts based on characters from the Twilight universe. The mini-movies will debut on Facebook next year.

The film series, which is being called The Storytellers – New Voices of the Twilight Saga, will be supported by Women in Film, a non-profit organization which, among other things, works to correct the shortage of female directors in Hollywood. The multi-step campaign will culminate in the selection of five female filmmakers. They’ll be chosen and mentored by a panel of advisors including Meyer; actresses Kristen Stewart, Kate Winslet, Octavia Spencer, and Julie Bowen; directors Jennifer Lee and Catherine Hardwicke; and Women in Film president Cathy Schulman.

“The female voice is something that has become more and more important to me as I’ve worked in the film industry,” said Meyer in a statement.

All five Twlight shorts will be financed through production advances, and fans will be involved in the development and production process via Facebook and Tongal. Despite the fact Kristen Stewart will appear on the panel, no Twilight cast members are expected to appear in the series.

I’m all for giving more female filmmakers a chance to shine, but why hitch them to a franchise as sappy as Twilight? If you want them taken seriously, shouldn’t they be given something a bit more substantial to work with? The answer probably has a lot to do with money. Lionsgate has it, and they have Twilight. The Hunger Games people have money as well, but they don’t need a random excuse to promote their franchise at the moment.

James Shotwell
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