Normally, when a distributor sends cast members from an upcoming movie on promotional appearances around the country, they send the film along with them.
But when actors Taylor Lautner (pictured at left) and Edi Gathegi, who play Jacob Black and Laurent in the much-anticipated Twilight, meet with fans at the Shops at Sunset Place mall in Miami at 4 p.m. Saturday afternoon, there will be no opportunity to see the film.
Distributor Summit Entertainment is being extremely coy with the movie, which opens Nov. 21. I was interested in interviewing director Catherine Hardwicke for an advance feature story on the Twilight phenomenon, but they wanted me to talk to her without seeing the film, which would make an interview rather tricky.
Executives at Summit have obviously made the decision to market Twilight directly to the books' fans instead of bothering with pesky journalists, who may have less-than-adulatory opinions about the movie. Twilight is going to make a billion dollars regardless of its quality. But I can't help thinking that if the movie was really good, Summit wouldn't be so protective of it.
Anyway: If you want to meet Lautner and Gathegi (who is the middle vampire in the trio above), you're gonna have to cough up $30 and line up outside the Hot Topic store on the mall's second floor. Get there early (the queue starts forming at 6 a.m.), since only the first 750 people in line will receive a Twilight bracelet that entitles them to a) a Twilight T-shirt b) a Twilight poster signed by the actors and c) the opportunity to say hello to them in the flesh.
Yeah, it's not much for $30. But we're in a recession. Times are tough. And this is, after all, a movie about bloodsuckers.