Massive opening prompts 'New Moon'

Fresh from a massive opening day for “Twilight,” Summit Entertainment has officially greenlit a “New Moon” sequel.

Summit made the widely expected announcement Saturday morning. “Twilight” generated first-day grosses of $35.7 million from 3,419 playdates on Friday — including $7 million from Thursday midnight shows.

The vampire thriller’s a ready-made franchise for Summit with four books in Stephenie Meyer’s series, which have sold more than 17 million copies worldwide.

“New Moon” is the second title in the series and is centered on Edward Cullen leaving Bella Swan in order to keep her safe from other vampires. Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart play the leads in the film.

“I don’t think any other author has had a more positive experience with the makers of her movie adaptation than I have had with Summit Entertainment,” Meyer said in a statement.

“Twilight” had been expected to open in the $50 million to $60 million range, although it looks likely to end up above that.

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