As the waning hours of Thursday turn into the first few minutes of Friday, “Twilight” fans all over the U.S. will pack the theaters.
The popular series ends with the fifth movie, “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 2,” and fans are whipped into a frenzy for the — for now — last movie of the series.
The first movie in the saga, “Twilight” was released in theaters nearly four years ago, in November 2008.
Blythe Steelman was a senior in high school at the time, and she drove 45 minutes from Lawrenceburg, Tenn., to catch the midnight showing at Carmike Regency Square 12 in Florence.
“I had always wanted to go to (a midnight showing),” Steelman said. “But I never had a vested interest in any kind of movie before then.”
Having read all of the books in the “Twilight” series when the first movie was released, Steelman said she was more than excited to go to the midnight premiere.
“I was obsessed,” Steelman laughed.
When Steelman went to the first premiere in 2008, she said the theater was filled with “ ‘Twilight’ fanatics” and nearly everyone was wearing T-shirts from the series or were dressed as characters.
“It was intense, and everyone was so into it,” Steelman said.
Steelman is now a senior at the University of North Alabama, majoring in journalism.
She said she plans to go at midnight for the final movie as she has for the previous four films.
Rylei Collier, of Albertville, is a freshman at UNA studying public relations. She said she’s planning to see “Breaking Dawn — Part 2” in Huntsville at Monaco Pictures, which is a tradition for her and her mom.
“We have gone every year from the first ‘Twilight,’ ” Collier said.
Collier said she was 15 when the first movie came out and she went with her mother who also got into the series. She said she hasn’t read any of the books and likes being “blindsided” by what happens in the films, as opposed to going in with an expectation from the books.
One of the benefits of seeing a movie at midnight, is that most of the moviegoers are focused and intent on paying attention. It just creates a different atmosphere from a typical showing, Steelman said.
Collier echoed that sentiment. “I’ve seen these movies multiple times in the theaters, not just midnight premiere,” Collier said. “And it’s just more serious with the midnight premiere. In the regular movies everyone’s talking or not paying attention; with the midnight premiere it’s like more respected. You’re all there for the same reason, not just there to be at the movies.”
Jimmy Greenhill, the owner of Kings Drive-In in Russellville, said they are showing “Breaking Dawn — Part 1” at 10 p.m. today before showing “Part 2” at midnight.
Kings Drive-In has shown the previous two “Twilight” movies at midnight.
“We are normally closed at this time, but we stay open just to play ‘Twilight,’ that late,” Greenhill said. “Got so many of the ladies that want to see that, so I try to do it for them.”
The management at Carmike Regency Square 12 in Florence declined to comment because of corporate policy.
Bobby Bozeman can be reached at 256-740-5722 or bobby.bozeman@TimesDaily.com.