Harry Potter


I don’t know how many versions of this I have on this site now. Consider this the final draft until I write my next one. These wishes are really in no particular order.

There may be some SPOILERS here. I’m not moving this to my Twilight page because at this particular moment I am thinking that if you’re surfing for Twilight stuff, specifically stuff on New Moon, you don’t mind spoilers so much. If you do, surf elsewhere for now. But do come back later.

Dear Summit Entertainment, Chris Weitz, et al,

I’m happy to hear that New Moon will be filming in Vancouver AND Italy. If you can’t film in Forks, Vancouver seems ideal. Not only is it one of my favorite places I’ve been, but they are used to the film and television industry up there. From what I heard, Portland was a little overwhelmed. It’s strange but I’m not terribly concerned about the continuity of having the same high school or the same Cullen house, or even Bella’s same house. In all likelihood you would have chosen different shots, and it would have seemed like different places anyway. Who knows, maybe you can even shoot in such a way that it feels like the same places even though they aren’t the same places. It will be interesting to see how that turns out.

So, Wish #1 is already taken care of. I was really concerned that you were going to fake Italy. I hope if you don’t shoot in Volterra that you pick an Etruscan town at least. I’ll be able to tell if you don’t. It will bother me and “take me out” of the movie. I don’t like these kinds of distractions. While I’m on the subject of Italy, Alice really needs to steal a yellow Porsche.

Which leads me to Wish #2: More Cullens! I was pretty disappointed that we didn’t get to know the Cullens much in Twilight. I think the script could have been much tighter to include these wonderful characters. They are truly a family, and I didn’t get that feeling from them in the movie. Also, Jasper’s gift was never even discussed. There is some catching up to do in this regard, now, if we are to fully feel the emotional impact of Bella’s birthday. I’m happy to help in any way I can. Have your people call…well, me. I don’t have people yet.

Wish #3 is better dialogue. Please don’t fail the actors again. They’ve had a rough couple months if they are reading the endless flaming in the blogosphere about their “wooden” acting. They can only do so much with the words you are putting in their mouths. Yes, I’m aware that most of what is said in the books is actually being said in Bella’s head, but you’ve chosen to adapt the Twilight Saga to the screen so you really need to figure out a way to translate what’s in Bella’s head into dialogue and stage direction. And please, enough with the voice overs. Remember, show, don’t tell.

Wish #4. Like Edward, I’m wishing for more time. What’s your rush? I know you want either a holiday or summer release. I know you don’t want to go up against Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in July. I know you don’t want to wait another whole year. Why not a May 2010 release? You could be the Memorial Day/Early Summer blockbuster and not compete so heavily with Harry Potter for the summer box office. It would give you another six months. Would six months be so bad? I think it would really help. We’ve all been pretty forgiving about Twilight because we understand that it was originally this little indie film and that the fan base exploded during filming. We won’t be so forgiving this time. This time you knew in advance what kind of film this was going to be. If it’s not budgeted, scripted, and filmed accordingly you will not get the return on your New Moon investment that you did with Twilight. I’ll see it twice, tops, if you mess it up. I’ve seen Twilight 7 times, and you can check my blog for what I thought of that one to begin with.

Oh boy. Here I go. Wish #5 is better direction. Catherine Hardwicke, again, we disagree on what the basics of story are. I have to say once again that I appreciate your willingness to step back when you didn’t get the time you wanted for pre-production. I’m with you on  this one. I just hope that Chris Weitz is up to the task. I watched The Golden Compass, which I think is one of the worst adaptations of a novel to screen that I’ve ever seen. I was highly entertained, don’t get me wrong, but I could tell there was something missing. When I read the books immediately after seeing the movie I understood just how much was cut away. It was almost unrecognizable. New Moon won’t have a completely fantastic setting to awe the audience into submission, and the fans are a bit more rabid than your average His Dark Materials fan. One thing I did think was good about The Golden Compass was the acting. I found all the characters believable and engaging. There was some big talent there, sure, but I’m certain that some of the credit goes to Chris Weitz. There were some pretty young actors, including the star of the film, Dakota Blue Richards, who I see has no other credits before this film listed in IMDB. I have high hopes for Chris Weitz’s handling of actors here. To tell the truth, I was hoping for David Fincher. He directed Panic Room…and Kristen Stewart.

Wish #6 is for KStew herself. I like you. I have been working on a blog post just about you for some time now. I’ve been catching up on your movies since Twilight came out. I’ve been one of your biggest supporters. I just can’t take the stammering. Did you just not learn your lines properly? Where you encouraged to ad lib? Please get this under control. It’s very distracting. I don’t see you doing this in other films, but I do see you doing this in interviews. Please, get more into Bella. You have a very emotional performance coming up. If you do it right, we’ll all be crying with you. If not, we’ll just be crying.

Wish #7 is a faithful script. I am one of the few who did not like the whole treetop thing in Twilight. Visually dynamic, blah, blah, blah. It was out of character for Edward to allow Bella to go climbing around in treetops. He can’t fly. If she were to fall, there is no Superman/Lois Lane “you’ve got me?!? Who’s got you?!?” scenario. There is so much to this wonderful story. At over 500 pages, you should not be lacking to the point of needing to create new scenes.

We all know what happens for 379 or so of those pages. Wish #8 is a faithful script. Yes, I’m wishing this twice. Do not diminish Bella and Jacob’s relationship by having Edward hanging around over much, if you know what I mean. If you are too nervous about a lack of Heart ThRob, then give us a few cut scenes to show us how miserable he is. Don’t over do, though. We want to feel this pain. It’s the heart of the story. Parting is such sweet sorrow.

As I sit here listening to the Twilight Soundtrack, I am reminded how terribly important music is to a film. Wish #9 is, and I cringe to say this, no soundtrack. Sure I’d love another killer CD like this one, but Bella just really doesn’t like music during this particular phase of her life. I really want a soundtrack though. So, if you could, just give us a few snippets, maybe while Jacob is learning about Bella’s aversion to music, that would be great. I vote for Kristen Stewart covering Radiohead’s Creep, as I’ve stated in a previous post. Other than these few snippets, and some mood music, I really think this film should be pretty quiet. I think an absence of music would go a long way toward the mood, as much as I’d like another Supermassive Black Hole moment. Hey, maybe the whole soundtrack can come from before Bella’s birthday and after Volterra. The dark spot inbetween would be pretty powerful, I’d bet.

I think 10 wishes is enough, for now. Wish #10 is better wardrobe for the Cullens. The character quirks in the Twilight Saga are what really make if for me. Jasper’s inner struggle to satisfy his physical and emotional cravings. Emmett’s love of both Rosalie and irritible grizzlies. Rosalie’s love of Emmett and auto mechanics. Carlisle and Esme’s love for each other and their work. And Alice’s love of couture. She is the personal shopper for seven very wealthy vampires. We are forever seeing French tags on clothes. Please, pay more attention to the clothing, or Alice will be very put out. I’m going to throw Jacob’s wig into this category. You can do better.

All right, so I’m turning it up to 11. Wish #11 is that everything not be blue. I love blue. Twilight has long been my favorite time of day because everything turns blue. But Forks doesn’t exist in eternal twilight. It’s not in Alaska. It’s in Washington. If I go to Forks and find that every building I visit does indeed have a blue interior, I will recant this wish, but until then, please, give us some natural light.

Let’s just make it an even dozen and talk about effects. Wish #12 is for better special effects. You have a bigger budget this time, but I know a chunk of that is going toward locations and higher salaries for the actors. I know you are already thinking in terms of effects, but please, if you can’t improve on Edward’s sparkle, don’t feel compelled to make him sparkle at all. And for heaven’s sake, no more cheesy wire work for running through the forest. Just keep it real, and save the effects budget for fur-sploding werewolves.

What’s on your Wish List?

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The Macy’s Parade is over. The cheeseball is chilling in the fridge. The turkey is in the oven. The Holidays are officially upon us. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

I for one have much to be thankful for. Highest on the list is my Uncle J. He made it through his surgery beautifully yesterday and is on the mend. They will have him up and walking around today–amazing!

I am thankful for my friends and family. They are fun, loving, and best of all supportive. I know I can count on you, and I hope you know you can count on me. I love you all.

I am thankful for my job. Sure, I complain a lot about it, but it’s hard work, so I suppose that is to be expected. I really am thankful to have a job, especially with today’s economy being what it is.

I am thankful for my hobbies. Gaming, writing, reading, and movies, have done their best to keep me sane, especially the last couple of years. That leads me to thank a few authors in particular, who have given me the means to escape when needed in the last few years: JK Rowling, the writers of such recent Star Wars novel series as the New Jedi Order Era and the Legacy of the Force Era, Andrew Davidson, and of course Stephenie Meyer. A special Thank You to the folks at The Game Depot, Arizona, my FLGS. If anyone has kept me sane (Yes, I know. I use the term lightly.) these last few years, it has been you. Thanks for keeping my hands busy and my mind occupied.

I know I have a lot more to be thankful for, but time is running short. There is dinner to be made. I’ll close with Old Man Bobby. I cannot say Thank You enough, for everything. For more Date Nights than I can count. For dealing with my many neuroses and putting up with my crap in general. For backrubs I never have to ask for. For endless games of Ask Me About My Book. For doing my bidding. And of course for all the stuff I shouldn’t mention in polite company. Thank you. I’m a lucky woman to have a “boyfiend” like you. Don’t tell anyone I said that though.

Remember that nasty break-up that made it impossible to listen to the radio because every song seemed to be about you and how your life used to be great, or about you and how much life sucks right now? I’m experiencing a very strange version of that. I’ll be listening to the radio, and suddenly I’m thinking about Twilight, it’s characters, and their situations. I’ve never experienced anything like that with a book and I’ve already discussed now wrapped up and obessed I can get. Not an unpleasant experience, just weird. I wonder if it’s because Twilight happens more in the here and now than the other stuff I’ve read. Harry Potter and Interview with the Vampire happen in our world, but are far more removed from the life of the average reader than Twilight. Who knows, maybe Stephenie Meyer really just has her finger on the pulse. Maybe I’m just really crazy…

Here are a few. I suppose in a way, there could be Spoilers here.

Bella to Edward

Bella’s Dark Ages

More from Bella’s Dark Ages

Edward to Bella

Alice and Jasper

I’m surprised what I read online about Robert Pattinson not being immediately and universally loved as the pick to play Edward. I think he’s perfect. Mind you I’d seen a teaser months before I knew about Twilight (which I somehow forgot!) and this may have colored my vision of Edward when I finally started reading, but I doubt it. The reason I think he’s perfect goes back to my experience at the midnight showing of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, in which Rob played Cedric Diggory, everyone’s favorite Hufflepuff. The first time we see Ced, he’s drops down into the shot from a tree. There was an audible gasp and sigh from the audience, myself and my girlfriend Joelle included. He was that beautiful. As an unassuming Hufflepuff wizard, Rob managed to dazzle an entire audience. Imagine what he’ll do to us as Edward Cullen.

Here’s Rob on playing Edward:

My Twilight Chronicles begin in LA, in the beginning of July. I was on my Pacesetter Award trip for work, and my friend Bryan kept pulling out this book called New Moon. I would not have pegged him as a reader. Turns out I was wrong about that, but the fact remains that this mohawked, pierced, tattooed gentleman with the chain on his pants was pulling out a book every chance he got just to read even two pages. Being a reader, I understand that when someone pulls out a book in public it’s a sign that their mind is really elsewhere right now, and they shouldn’t be disturbed. It could be dangerous, like waking a sleep-walker. As the days passed, I couldn’t contain my curiosity any longer. Besides, I was hot and miserable on our broken-down tour bus, and really needed a distraction. I crossed the line and asked what it was that had so captured his attention. He told me a little bit about it and I thought it sounded like something I’d like to read someday. He clearly had to get back to it, so that was that. I again wondered at the obsessive manner of his reading. Not even during the height of my Harry Potter Haze did I get that obsessed about reading.

Let me restate that. I have been obsessed about a great many writers’ universes over the years. I’m a geek with every fiber of my being. I’ve always been a reader, but a slow one. My attention span is quirky enough that I can’t sit and read for hours and hours. Four hours is about my limit, and I’ll probably break to get something to eat and move around a bit. I’ll think about the book obsessively in the meantime, even worrying about the characters as if they could somehow get into more trouble while I’m not looking, but to actually sit and read for hours and hours can be painful for me no matter how amazing and enthralling the story. So, while reading Harry Potter, and even the Star Wars: New Jedi Order series, I’d read for extended periods when I could, but life went on, albeit with me pondering the mysteries of the books like the obsessive fangirl I am.

So, vampires, werewolves, high school drama…Yeah, I’d be reading that. I just had to finish with my Boba Fettish first, and it would have to wait until after my extended vacation. Pacesetter first, then the family reunion. So fast forward to the family reunion. I had watched Bryan tear through New Moon and Eclipse on our three day trip, and what’s one of the first things cousin Anna says to me when we meet to go see Hancock? “So you’ve read Twilight, right?” The tone of her question stuck with me. It said to me that it was expected that I would have read this already, that it would be old news to me. Anna seemed very excited that she would be the one bringing this joy into my life. She started describing it and I said, “Hey wait, is one of the books called New Moon.” She said, “Yes, that’s it. Read it. You’re going to love Edward.” That was all that was said. I think she didn’t want to ruin anything for me. Anna, thank you for the introduction, but why, oh why, did you wait so long? I’d be mad at you, but I had an amazing time reading then books when I did…almost magical. In the future don’t assume I’ve already read something. I get obsessed with things and lose track of what’s going on in the outside world.

When I got home from vacation, I was still reading the Boba Fett books. I finished the day I got back actually, and resolved that I’d go get Twilight Friday. When I finish something I need a little time to “mourn the book”. Odd, I know, but I find I enjoy books much more if I get over the previous book first. So Friday, I had a date with Old Man Bobby, and he graciously agreed to take me to my favorite Borders. I had an inkling of what was to come, so I grabbed the first two books which were out in paperback. I didn’t see a paperback for Eclipse so I waited on that one until I found out when it was coming out. What? I like my books to match.

I was tired after a hard day’s work, so Bobby and I called it a night early in hopes that I’d make it out to Game Depot to game on time for once. When he was gone I thought, “I’ll read a few pages before bed.” A few pages turned into 60. How did I get to page 60 already? I gotta get to bed. I’m pretty sure I dreamed of a certain beautiful, bronze-haired vampire that night, but I’m not sure. I woke up in plenty of time to have a nice leisurely morning before going gaming. That might have been a mistake. I should have slept in until I had to shower and bolt out the door. Having time, I couldn’t resist picking up Twilight. I didn’t even turn on the TV. My TV is always on when I am home, except when I’m sleeping. I need the background noise. At noon, when I was already supposed to be at the store, I wrenched the book out of my hands and went to shower. Late again.

I was restless during the day. Gaming was fun, but my thoughts strayed, even though I’d had two solid weeks of no gaming and had been suffering withdrawals. Suddenly I had a new addiction. It turns out Twilight is exactly my brand of heroin. Twilighters, Twerds, Fanpires, and Twihards alike will know just what I mean. The next week was more of the same.

I’m not allowed to read at work no matter how slow the phones are, so I generally don’t bring a book. I couldn’t help myself though. I brought it and found that now I was the one sneaking a page or two whenever possible. When I couldn’t read, the book sat next to me as I sat there looking at it hungrily, leg bouncing. My co-workers were highly amused. Jo got the gist that I was obsessing about a book but hadn’t heard anything more than that. Knowing me, she stood up and asked, “Harry Potter or Twilight?” I answered. She smiled and said, “Ok so let me ask you a question.” As an out-of-the-closet-geek, I get nervous when people say that. It’s generally like a pop quiz. I just knew I was about to be stumped. It’s a constant fear, a hazard of the company I keep, I suppose. So I took a breath and said OK, and Jo asked, “Edward, or Jacob?” By this point it was about Wednesday and I was already, starting Eclipse. Even though I’d only just begun, I was almost finished with the saga as the world new it then, so I knew all about Edward VS Jacob. I blushed and found myself unable to answer quickly enough. Crystal giggled behind me and said, “Edward! She loves him!” More blushing. Turns out Jo is a Twilighter of the Team Jacob variety. Jacob’s a fine person. I can’t hold it against her. She doesn’t even like Edward though, so clearly she must be crazy.

At this point I think I must go back to previous statements about my obsessive fangirl nature. I discovered Fantasy and Sci-Fi early on in life. It started when I first saw the play Camelot. From then on I loved all things medieval. Knights, quests, damsels. It’s only a small hop from there to Unicorns and Dragons, and from there it’s all fantasy all the time. When I got over my fear of “big books”  and series (always the slow reader, they were too much pressure), I found Piers Anthony. The man’s prolific. I occupied me through my high school years, and most of college for that matter. Throughout college I kept hearing about Anne Rice and her vampires. They were on my list, if Piers would ever slow down. When the movie Interview with the Vampire came out, I left Piers and never looked back. You see, Edward is not my first vampire. Louis and I go way back. I was quite obsessed with Anne Rice’s vampires, especially Louis. Louis and I were together for a few years, but Anne decided to go in another direction, and he left me. No matter, a fangirl’s gotta do what a fangirl’s gotta do. I turned to Anne’s witch series, and from there slowly read everything she’d written (yes, everything, even those). I had other dalliances, which I’ve mentioned. Although, out of respect, I don’t count Harry Potter a dalliance. He saved me like Jacob saved Bella, truth be told (Thanks JK!). But that’s another story which I won’t tell here.

Back to the matter at hand. I could hardly believe how I was devouring these books. I could certainly relate to Edward’s reaction to Bella, as I wondered if somehow the pages of my books were impregnated with heroin. Nothing had ever effected me quite this way. I’d spent hours upon hours talking about and writing about my theories on what would happen to Harry Potter, but I could put the books down. I wasn’t staying up intil 1am when I had to be up at 5am. Sure Harry Potter is the first book I ever read a second time (well four times now), so that should give you an idea of how I felt about it, but I could put it down. I could not make myself put the Twilight books down!

I knew a new book was coming out, but I didn’t know when until I snuck online at work and checked it out. No, we’re not supposed to be on the internet either. So there you go, more evidence of my obsession. I was sneaking pages at work and willfully going online. It started innocently enough at first. We’re allowed to visit travel-related sites, being that we’re travel agents. I checked out Forks. Linda was more than happy to help me out, asking me questions. You’ll be happy to know that the population in Forks went up between 2000 and 2005, so the vampire population isn’t having a negative effect there. Anyway, I found out that Breaking Dawn was coming out that very Saturday! I’d broken down and bought the hardcover Eclipse, knowing I couldn’t hold out until April for the paperback. Would I finish in time for the release? I didn’t have a whole lot of time to read late in the week, so I wasn’t confident. I knew I’d pick up the book Saturday anyway.

Friday night I went out with my friend Erika to see The Dark Knight. We got out about 10pm, and she said, “Ok, come on, let’s check out Barnes & Noble. I know you want to.” She was with me at the midnight release of the last Harry Potter book. I think she was as curious about the spectacle, too. This was the first time I saw who my fellow fans were. I expected Team Jacob and Team Edward shirts. I expected to be raising the mean age by about 20 years, but I did not expect…emo. I definitely wasn’t expecting all that glitter and black eyeliner. I was a little disturbed at the thought of me as a 15-year-old Twerd, but I shook it off. I didn’t stay to get the book. I hadn’t finished Eclipse and was afraid of spoilers. Erika and I called it a night, and I went home…by way of my favorite Borders. I just had to see how their party was shaping up. It wasn’t any more crowded than B&N, neither party holding a candle to the Potter release. The t-shirt score was 8-2 in Edward’s favor by the end of the night, by the way.

The next day I was back, and buying Breaking Dawn. My favorite Borders cashier chatted me up as usual. He doesn’t remember from visit to visit, I’m sure. I think he just flirts with every geek girl he can. “Breaking Dawn,” he said, “I think I’ve heard of this one…wait, yes, I’ve sold 2000 copies today.” He went on to tell me about a shirt from the night before. A husband of a Twilighter was wearing a t-shirt that said “Team Jacob” on the front. On the back it said, “Because Edward stole my wife’s heart.” I laughed about that until Old Man Bobby asked me how much houses were going for in Forks. I answered too quickly, “There are four houses for sale, ranging from $125,000 to about $325,000.” Busted. He fully expects me to move to Forks any day now.

Old Man Bobby and I had had dinner and gone to a movie before getting the book, but it was early for a Saturday. We we got to the car he asked what I wanted to do now. I thought for a moment, not wanting to say it. He said, “I can just take you home so you can read. You are coming over tomorrow. Frankly I’m surprised you let me take you to a movie.” I thought he’d be mad, but he was really amused. Turns out he’s loving this. Well, of course, he is. He has something to tease me about. So take me home, he did, and did I ever read. I finished Eclipse at dawn. Naturally I couldn’t resist beginning Breaking Dawn at breaking dawn. Magic.

Once again, I’ve put off the real word in favor of Twilight. I need to get a move on. Old Man Bobby is one his way, and I’m not showered yet. I’ll write more about what I think of the actually story, characters, and writing later I imagine. I wasn’t ready to give Twilight up. I was completely obsessed and yet suddenly done with the books in a week and a half. What else could I do but start them over? I started Eclipse last night. Between reading this morning and this entry this afternoon, I’ve completely forgotten myself.

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