When “Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince” opens next week, the landscape will have changed dramatically since Potter’s stars, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint last appeared on the big screen. They’ll be fighting to regain their fan base from Twilight’s Rob Pattinson, Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner.
The sixth “Potter” movie is more grown-up than its predecessors and features a strong romantic plotline to keep up with its older fan base. The movie’s stars are now all in their late teens.
Not surprisingly, “New Moon,” the sequel to the blockbuster vampire movie, is also expected to be steamier than the movie that made Pattinson, Stewart and others household names.
Stars Rob and Kristen are the subjects of non-stop tabloid stories, largely speculating on whether their on-screen romance will blossom off-screen, including outlandish reports that Stewart is carrying Rob’s child. So far, the couple has denied anything other than a friendship.
But some industry insiders point out that, at least for the moment, “Twilight” is a one-hit wonder, while the Potter films are a solid franchise. The five films in the series have grossed $4.5 billion worldwide, one of the biggest hauls for a film series in box office history, according to the Wall Street Journal.
It’s been nearly a decade since a then-11-year-old Daniel Radcliffe appeared in the first Potter film, and its fan base appeared to be permanently cemented in place.
To hold its now, late-teen audience, the new film is heavy on romance and is darker, including the death of a major character. But the love scenes seem incongruous because romance has never been a story line in the movies until now.
In contrast, Twilight’s romantic themes are ingrained in the picture and play to the feelings of teen girls, who like Bella, long for eternal love with the perfect mate, even with deadly imperfections. Edward, after all, lusts for human blood.
In fact, the response to news items about Pattinson, when its unrelated to his Twilight character, has not been as strong, suggesting that Bella and Edward Cullen are the focus of teens’ obsession, not necessarily the stars themselves.
But fans will be the truest test of that claim. So who are the hotter stars and which film captures more teen hearts? Vote and we’ll publish the results!
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