(Last updated on Thursday, March 7 at 11:15 p.m. PT )
This past Saturday, Lionsgate Home Entertainment, invited the “Twilight” fansites to a private screening of “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1, Extended Edition,” and a sneak peek at some of the Behind the Scenes footage on the “Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ release. Then they sent us home with copies of all the versions that are arriving in stores this Friday night at midnight so we could review and decipher them for you! I spent hours watching both films with the director’s commentary as well as watching all the “Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ special features. So here’s what you need to know before you decide which store you’re lining up at on Friday night.
Where can you line up?
Not every retailer is having a midnight release party, but you kind find the closest one to you here: http://www.breakingdawn-themovie.com/releaseparty/. I remember last year for “Part 1″ that stores were being added throughout the week before it went on sale so even though your closest Target for example might not be listed now, it could be listed tomorrow. Summit Entertainment and Lionsgate Home Entertainment have not announced any cast member appearances at this time.
“Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ cast members are appearing at four Walmart locations starting at 11:00 p.m. on Friday, March 1. The select retail locations are as follows:
Cast Member: Judith Shekoni (Zafrina)
9451 Dunkirk Lane N
Maple Grove, MN 55311
PHILADELPHIA (Southern New Jersey)
Cast Members: Booboo Stewart and Julia Jones (Seth and Leah Clearwater)
1 Coopertown Blvd.
Somerdale, NJ 08083
Cast Members: Guri Weinberg (Stefan), Toni Trucks (Mary) and Erik Odom (Peter)
Walmart Super Center
4617 East Bell Road
Phoenix, AZ 85032
Cast Members: Lisa Howard, Patrick Brennan and Marlane Barnes (The Irish Coven – Siobhan, Liam and Maggie)
653 Gravois Bluffs Blvd
Fenton, MO 63026
For more information cast member appearances and promotions this week click here.
“The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1, Extended Edition” Guide
Whether you buy it as a single disc or buy it at Walmart where they are offering “Part 1, Extended Edition” and “Part 2″ (movie only, no special features or commentary on the DVD; the Blu-ray does contain the “Part 2″ Special Features. It states on the Blu-ray packaging that the “Special Features Not Included,” but our readers reported the contrary. I opened my Walmart Blu-ray and found that the “Part 2″ Special Features are on it.) in one package, it is the same thing. There are no Special Features for “Part 1, Extended Edition” other than the ability to watch it with new director’s commentary by Bill Condon, where he talks about the changes. None of the Special Features (the making of documentary, the wedding video, etc.) from the original release are on this DVD and Blu-ray.
Are you thinking about purchasing “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1, Extended Edition,” but want to know what’s new?
It’s not as clear cut as you might think. *SPOILER ALERT*
The film has a completely different beginning. It opens with a tolling bell before going to the click of heels as we see a beautiful human with a note walking down a long hall in Volterra. She delivers a note to Aro announcing Edward and Bella’s upcoming wedding. There’s a conversation between Aro and Caius about announcing Bella’s transformation. The human who delivers the note ends up as Felix’s lunch, and we can assumed is added to the large pile of dead humans on the floor. In the commentary, Bill Condon notes that it sets up the conflict with the Volturi that would have worked if it “Part 1” and “Part 2” were one movie, but didn’t work for just “Part 1,” which was about Bella’s journey through the wedding and the pregnancy.
The next variation I noticed, wasn’t a full scene, but the slight lengthening of an existing scene. During the Edward flashback in the movie theater, the scene is little bit longer. We see Edward make the decision to stand up and actually walk out of the theater. It’s just a few seconds, but it’s new.
The next new scene is on the honeymoon where we see Edward cooking eggs for Bella and they discusses her staying human longer because the sex is good.
I laughed at loud at what I consider a noticeable deletion – Jasper’s “Possibly” line is gone! It always felt awkward and I laughed the first time I saw it, but it also so fit what the film makers have done to him throughout this Saga. I will never forget Bill Condon asking me and Laura from Twilight Lexicon about the audience’s reaction to it at “Part 1″ premiere party. He seemed baffled by it, and now it’s gone.
Jacob, Rosalie and the dog bowl made it back into the film and I don’t think Emmett was getting any for a month afterwards. I can see why it didn’t make it. I adore Elizabeth Reaser, but her Esme delivery and was more her than Esme, and while I love Nikki Reed too, her “You got food in my hair,” felt so forced and over the top that it would have been deserving of a Razzie. It also just doesn’t fit without more of the back and forth banter between Jacob and Rosalie that happens in the book. There’s no reason for Jacob to get that violent with her and it just comes off as really mean on Jacob’s part instead of the feeling that Rosalie deserved it. The insertion of this scene mean the beginning of the sequence with the song “Cold” goes away and it comes in when Edward is searching on the internet.
The next new moment is that we see Jacob get up and walk out of the house at the end of the scene where Bella first drinks blood. This moment is in there to transition to the next new scene, which is Alice approaching Jacob on the patio outside (it looks like it could be the same place where Rosalie told Bella her backstory in “Eclipse”). Alice tells Jacob how she likes standing near him because it’s like closing her eyes. It’s a really nice moment between the two characters and shows how much they get along in comparison to Rose and Jake.
The last major insertion comes when the wolves are running toward the Cullen’s home to attack. In the theatrical version you see Edward call for Jasper and Alice while still with Bella and then all three of them are running outside. There is a new scene in between these two moments that fans will love. Jasper and Alice run down the stairs in unison while Edward comes down the hall and Rosalie approaches from the other direction with Renesmee in her arms. Edward tells Rosalie to “Stay with Bella.” Edward then turns away and pauses. He looks at Jacob and in Edward’s face you see him realize that Jacob has imprinted on his daughter. Edward immediately grabs Jacobs arm and breaks it then slams him across the room where he smashes into the fireplace while Jasper, Alice and Rosalie watch having no idea what just happened and why. Edward turns away and says, “I’ll deal with you later,” and tells Rosalie to “Protect them,” as he walks out with Jasper and Alice following. In the director’s commentary of the “Extended Edition,” and in the scene where Bella tosses Jacob around in “Part 2,” Bill talks about why they cut this scene. In essence it’s because Jacob’s imprinting on Renesemee is supposed to be pure, and Edward reacts in a way that indicates that it’s something terribly wrong and Jacob doesn’t get the chance to explain. By containing the moment to Bella’s reaction, there is time for Jacob to explain what imprinting is and that is not wrong.
Late in the fight between the wolves and the Cullen’s it flashes back to Jacob still on the floor where he landed. He sits up and adjusts his dislocated arm and then charges out to stop the fight.
These are all the changes I could pinpoint. I felt like there could have been slight alterations at other points along the way, but I’m not sure. Jacob and Bella at the wedding reception and the birth scene felt like there was something different, but someone with sharper eyes than me will have to figure out if there really is a change or just my mind playing tricks on me.
I’m sorry to disappoint you but there are no changes to either honeymoon sex scenes. The pre-wedding “the talk” scene between Edward and Carlisle didn’t make the new cut either, but Bill does mention it in the “Part 2” commentary during Edward and Carlisle’s chat in the woods the night before the confrontation. Bill said the “Part 2” scene was meant to be the bookend to the scene that didn’t make it in “Part 1.”
So should you buy the “Extended Edition?” I think if one of your friends buys it and you do a viewing party you’ll be happy you watched it, but I don’t know that it’s a version that you’ll watch over and over again when compared to the theatrical release. The reason to own it would be Edward wrecking Jacob – it is spectacular. I also recommend watching it at least once with the director’s commentary to understand why the added scenes didn’t make it from the director.
“The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ Guide
The only version of “Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ that is being released that has any bonus feature on it that you can’t get anywhere else is the Target Exclusive Edition. The Target Exclusive Edition contains a Bonus Disc that includes four Behind the Scenes segments (“tingles & chills: special vampire powers,” “Carlisle’s contacts: the new vampires,” “judge, jury & executioner: Aro & the Volturi,” and “Being Charlie Swan”) a segment called “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 at Comic-Con,” and “Stars on the Black Carpet,” which includes interviews from the World Premiere. Every version has Special Features that include a seven-part making-of documentary and a Bill Condon director’s commentary option. Target is also offering a Bella and Edward fabric in the meadow poster with purchase.
For those who were wondering about a case similar to the Borders “Twilight” and “New Moon” special editions or the Target “Eclipse” or “Part 1″ special editions with the thicker cardboard, you’re not getting it this time. The Target “Part 2″ edition has the right look, but it’s not the heavy hardcover book like quality cardboard.
I loved the extras on the Target “Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ bonus disc. “Carlisle’s contacts: the new vampires,” and “judge, jury & executioner: Aro & the Volturi,” provide awesome insight from Stephenie Meyer and the actors who play the roles. The behind the scenes segments gives us alternative takes of scenes if you look for it (like Kate shocking Edward a second time as he tries to get up) and a glance at some moments that didn’t make it into the final cut (Tanya talking about her past “relationship” with Edward at the “Part 1″ wedding reception and Amun’s talking to Aro on the field). You also get a close up look at many of the vampire ladies fighting on green screens during the battle that you never get a good look at in the film. I loved to segment on “Being Charlie Swan,” because it’s a documentary on Charlie Swan (Billy Burke)! The Comic Con segment includes almost the entire 2012 Hall H panel (with Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart, Taylor Lautner, Mackenzie Foy, Stephenie Meyer, Peter Facinelli, Elizabeth Reaser, Nikki Reed, Kellan Lutz, Jackson Rathbone and Ashley Greene) including Bill Condon’s taped introduction of the clip they showed and a (inaccurate) look at the fan experience. The reason it is inaccurate is because they they divided it into three days of camping, but the footage rarely matches the day it is noted to have taken place and in some cases is World Premiere footage, not Comic Con footage. The Comic Con and Black Carpet segments are must haves for those who attended the events and those who want to see what they experience was like. All of the items in this paragraph are on the Target Edition “Breaking Dawn – Part 2.”
All “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ DVD and Blu-ray contain a seven part documentary and the option for director’s commentary by Bill Condon. It wasn’t my favorite commentary. On the “Part 1″ commentary Bill does a great job at talking about the actors and what’s going on in the scene, where on “Part 2″ he spends a bit too much time focused on the technical production and team. For example, when Carlisle’s head was being ripped off I wanted some or any insight into the decision making regarding that moment, but it wasn’t even brought up because he was talking about finding the architecture of the battle scene and the names of production people that we can’t even begin to care about as the patriarch of the Cullen coven is being set on fire! To be fair he eventually does go back to talking about the Carlisle moment, but it’s about the audience’s reaction to it and by that point you want him to talk about what is happening on the screen then. He also revealed that Bella attempting to assist Jasper was originally filmed as a moment of her helping Carmen and Eleazar, but was changed in post production, which was a cool factoid. He also acknowledged that they could have used another six months for Renesmee’s CGI. Overall it often felt repetitive, and while there are quite a few gems I found much of it to be dull, especially compared to the “Part 1″ commentary.
The Behind the Scenes documentary, called “forever: filming The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ has seven parts – “Rebirth,” “Renesmee,” “the cottage,” “the gathering,” “the field,” “the battle” and “forever” and there is a separate Behind the Scenes piece called “two movies at once,” and there’s the Green Day video for “The Forgotten.” There definitely is some repetition between this and what’s on the Target bonus disc, but there is plenty of new stuff. You get to see non-CGI’ed little girls and babies standing in for Renesmee and Robert Pattinson interacting with these kids (aw!). You get to see most, if not all, of the new vampires’ auditions. The auditions are awesome because in some cases the actors are reading lines from the books that didn’t make it into the film or they are playing a different character than the one they end up being cast as (Angela Sarafyan (Tia) auditions for Irina while Bill Tangradi (Randall) reads for Eleazar).You get a lot of info on the new vampires and Renesmee, and we finally get to see the dance off, but there’s very little insight or interviews with the “Cullen’s.” There is a lot of Kristen Stewart and understandably so, but I didn’t feel like there were many interview moments with Mr. Pattinson.
Is there a box set?
Best Buy will be selling on Blu-ray only “The Twilight Saga: The Complete Collection,” which includes all five films with the “Breaking Dawn, Part 1 – Extended Edition,” in one Best Buy exclusive package, but there are no additional bonus features on this set.
What can I only get where? What are the exclusives and giveaways?
Target – Target’s Exclusive Edition – “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ features a bonus disc, special packaging and you will receive a fabric Edward and Bella poster with purchase.
Walmart – Walmart Special Edition packages “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1, Extended Edition” and “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn, Part 2″ in one box. THERE ARE NO “BREAKING DAWN – PART 2″ SPECIAL FEATURES IN THIS PACKAGE! It is the film only. Midnight release party only giveaway – set of five mini replicas of “The Twilight Saga” theatrical posters. Quantities are limited.
Best Buy – The Blu-ray only “The Twilight Saga: The Complete Collection,” containing all five films (movies only – no special features) will be sold exclusively at Best Buy. Best Buy is offering an exclusive locket key chain in a blister pack attached to “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ Blu-ray. The digital copies on this set are CinemaNow, not iTunes or Ultraviolet.
Sam’s Club – On Saturday, March 2, Sam’s Clubs will be giving away “Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ mini posters and tattoo sheets at sampling stations in stores.
Barnes and Noble – With the purchase of “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ on Blu-ray or DVD is giving away an exclusive “Breaking Dawn” picture frame with a picture of newborn vampire Bella and Edward.
Fred Meyer – The first 100 customers for the midnight release will receive a “Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ keychain and movie poster.
So that’s everything I think I know, but do you still have questions? I’ll answer anything I can right up until Friday night. Just leave a comment below or tweet me @pagetopremiere.
“The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1, Extended Edition” and “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2″ DVD/Blu-ray arrive at retailers on March 2.