LOS ANGELES – Dakota Fanning is set to star as a bloodsucking vampire in the highly anticipated “Twilight” sequel, “New Moon”.
Film bosses have finally confirmed that the 15-year-old will play the role of Jane, a member of the Italian Volturi vampires in the sequel.
The teenage actress has been at the centre of fevered speculation in recent months as Internet reports claim she has been offered a role opposite Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson in the upcoming movie.
Filming for “New Moon”, which sees Stewart, Pattinson and Taylor Lautner reprise their roles as Bella Swan, Edward Cullen, and Jacob Black respectively, is set to begin in Vancouver later this month, and the cast is already gushing over the script.
“We did just get a script, we’re shooting the rest of the films back to back,” said Nikki Reed, who plays Rosalie. “[Director] Chris Weitz is amazing and I think it’s going to be wonderful.”
Vanessa Hudgens, of “High School Musical” fame, was rumoured to be up for the role of Leah Clearwater in New Moon. However, it appears to be just rumours, according to screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg.
“I’m not sure about [final] casting but I had heard Vanessa Hudgens was going up for the part of Leah [Clearwater, a werewolf]. But at the moment, the part of Leah doesn’t happen until the third movie,” said Rosenburg.
As for other changes in the next instalment, Rosenberg said she expects new director Chris Weitz, who replaces the first film’s director, Catherine Hardwicke, to put his expertise and imprint on the second film.
“Chris Weitz directed ‘The Golden Compass’, which was a beautiful-looking film,” Rosenberg said. “And I think it’s wonderful we have someone who has worked with CGI animals … that will be a big part of New Moon. I’m delighted we have someone who’s so expert at that.”
Weitz, however, will not direct the third film in the “Twilight” franchise, “Eclipse”.
The second and third “Twilight” films are due to be released very close together and Weitz would still be in post-production on “New Moon” when shooting for “Eclipse” begins. “New Moon” is set to be released in November 2009 while “Eclipse” is scheduled to his screens in June 2010.
Summit Entertainment is already canvassing for new directors to helm “Eclipse”. Actress Drew Barrymore has reportedly joined a “select group” of possible directors – which includes James Mangold (“3:10 To Yuma”) and Juan Antonio Bayona (“The Orphanage”) – who could step behind the camera for the film. Barrymore, who runs her own production company, has just finished work on her directorial debut, “Whip It!”, starring Ellen Page.
Perhaps film bosses are looking to pick two names from the group as Stewart is confident that there will be a fourth film in the series.
“We all really hope there is going to be a number four. I’m pretty confident that the fans aren’t going to, all of a sudden, lose interest
“The only case that a fourth one (instalment to the series) wouldn’t be made is if all of a sudden people stopped caring, and I really don’t think that’s going to happen,” said the actress.
Channel News Asia