Many had assumed, following the completion of the final book and its subsequent film adaptation, that the Twilight saga had run its course. However, something as incidental as “running out of source material” can’t keep the Twilight cross-platform marketing bonanza down.
Variety reports that the presumed-dead franchise has risen from the grave in the form of five new short films based on characters from the series. Apparently not quite through manipulating its users’ emotions, the shorts will be presented exclusively on Facebook, where the official Twilight page has over 150 million followers. Fans will then have a chance to select a grand prize winner from among the five contenders.
Entitled “The Storytellers—New Creative Voices Of The Twilight Saga,” the films are being presented as an opportunity for female directors to be mentored by a panel of judges, including author Stephanie Meyer and series star Kristen Stewart. “The female voice is something that has become more and more important to me as I’ve worked in the film industry,” Meyer says. “I’m honored to be working with Women In Film, Lionsgate, and Facebook on a project dedicated to giving more women a chance to be heard creatively.”
While there’s no word yet on the creative origin of these films or which—if any—of the actors from the Twilight series would be returning for these shorts, there is apparently plenty to say about “growing franchises,” “engaging global audiences,” and “brand awareness.” Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer and Vice Chairman Michael Burns echo Meyers’ comments about opportunities for women, stressing their commitment to “female empowerment in front of and behind the camera.” Definitely not mentioned by the CEO and Vice Chairman was the fact that Lionsgate hasn’t produced a single theatrically-released film helmed by a woman in the past two years. Hooray for progress.