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Teens are stars of 'Twilight' success

Written by Sharon Eberson on .

stargirl coverBy Sharon Eberson / Friday, Nov. 21 

Fandango, the sellers of movie tickets and perpetrators of the brown-bag puppet commercials, sends e-mail updates on how brisk sales are for new movies.

If you need any more evidence that "Twilight" is going to be huge, consider:

  • Fandango has been selling 5 "Twilight" tickets per second, as of early Friday morning.
  • Fandango sold out more than 1,000 "Twilight" midnight show times on Thursday night, in advance and online;
  • 34% of moviegoers in a Fandango.com poll said they will take off a few hours from school or the office today to see "Twilight."
  • It's the company's fastest-selling film since "The Dark Knight" in July of this year.
  • "Twilight" has the No. 3 spot on Fandango's list of Top Advance Ticket-Sellers, surpassing the "Harry Potter," "Pirates" and "Lord of the Rings" movies. "Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith" and "The Dark Knight" remain in the No. 1 and No. 2 spots, respectively.

There's a lesson in this for moviemakers and theater owners: Teen girls are important consumers of entertainment and not to be ignored.

Since "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" has already hit the big screen, I went looking for another book aimed at teens that might fit the "Twilight" demo. So I searched imdb.com for "Stargirl," to see if anyone had considered adapting Jerry Spinelli's tale of "the perils of popularity, the courage of nonconformity and the thrill of first love, in which an eccentric student named Stargirl changes Mica High School forever." It was a book choice of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh for the Post-Gazette's My Generation Book Club, and a choice for a movie adaptation, due next year from director Paul Feig (episodes of "The Office," "Weeds" and "Mad Men"). Canadian actress Zemphira Gosling is rumored for the title role.

There's also a film project on the Bronte sisters, with the estimable Evan Rachel Wood rumored to play Ann.

Clearly, the movie studios have gotten the message.

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