Entertainment behind the scenes
Fans lined up Thursday night at movie theaters to be among the first to get bitten by the “New Moon” phenomenon, the sequel to last year’s “Twilight.” The vampire romance movie ended up setting a box office record of $26.3 million for those midnight screenings by drawing fans like the ones profiled in our Fan Fare video below.
Who will go to “New Moon?” Lots of teen girls, for sure, but also moms who are into the story, young women and the men they drag along on dates. Those groups are expected to snap up tickets to the tune of about $100 million at U.S. and Canadian box offices this weekend. That’s a lot of howling at the “New Moon.”
“New Moon,” of course, has generated plenty of buzz. Tracking firm Trendrr said that in the last three months, more than 100,000 “New Moon” related videos have been added to YouTube.com. Trendrr also said that on Thursday, Twitter.com received more than 91,000 posts related to “New Moon.”
But despite all that popularity, the Vatican is not on-board. This week, an official with the Catholic Church called the film “nothing more than a moral vacuum with a deviant message.” This despite influential film critic Roger Ebert saying that the “Twilight Saga is an extended metaphor for teen chastity.” Who to believe?
After exposing a Church cover-up in "The Da Vinci Code," symbologist Robert Langdon returns to the big screen as an unlikely Vatican ally in the latest movie adaptation of a novel by author Dan Brown.
"Angels & Demons," again starring Tom Hanks as Langdon and directed by Ron Howard, premieres in Rome on Monday at a theatre a mile (0.6 kilometer) away from Vatican City. It's due to open in the United States on May 15.
When John Lennon said in 1966 that the Beatles were "more popular than Jesus," there was a furious reaction in the United States. Dozens of radio stations in the South and Midwest banned Beatles music and some concert venues cancelled scheduled appearances by the band. Their manager Brian Epstein quickly flew to the U.S. to try to quell the storm. Soon afterward, Lennon told a news conference in Chicago that he was sorry for making the comparison, although he added he still thought it was true. The Vatican, as far as I can see from online archives, stayed silent and aloof even thought it could hardly agree with or approve Lennon's message. (Photo: Japanese band performs in Lennon's memory, 8 Dec 2005/Toshiyuki Aizawa)
When the Vatican daily L'Osservatore Romano came out with a nostalgic look back at the Beatles on the 40th anniversary of their 1968 White Album on Saturday, it lead off the article with Lennon's famous quote and promptly shrugged it off. "The remark by John Lennon, which triggered deep indignation mainly in the United States, after many years sounds only like a 'boast' by a young working-class Englishman faced with unexpected success, after growing up with the legend of Elvis and rock and roll," it wrote. The Beatles' music was creative and original, even more so than their haircuts and clothes, and has stood the test of time, it said. The Italian-language original has now been overtaken on the OR website by the latest edition, but an English translation will certainly pop up somewhere (on Zenit?).