Melissa Rosenberg talks about New Moon, David Slade, and Dexter

MRScreenwriter Melissa Rosenberg, seen here with Stephenie Meyer, spoke to Sci-Fi TV Zone about her career.  The interview was done over the phone and they have supplied the recording for us to listen to.  They have divided it up into four segments.  The first segment focuses on her work with the show Dexter.  The second segment is about how she adapted the Twilight Saga for films.  The third segment is all about her work with New Moon.  And the fourth segment provides her thoughts on The Twilight Saga: Eclipse director David Slade.

About New Moon, Rosenberg says, “It looks gorgeous!  And it is a big movie!” And she confirms that Taylor Lautner is “unbelievable” in the way he stands up against the relationship established by Kristen Stewart and Rob Pattinson in the first film.

Listen to all four segments over at the Sci-Fi TV Zone.


  1. sillygirl says:

    I’m so disappointed. People blame the outcome of Twilight on CH, but melissa just doesn’t get it. She’s a good writer for sure, I love Dexter. But this is just not a job for her. The movie just looked like another teen movie, no different than everything else we’ve seen. She just doesn’t grasp Edward and Bella’s relationship at all, and how different it is from your average love story. The “conversations” should not have had music played over them. the conversations were what made us all fall in love with story in the first place. K, rant over… sorry

    • I agree with you. Bella and Edward’s relationship isn’t an ordinary one and that is why we fell in love with them. I also agree with the whole music thing playing over their conversations WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT ? Where was the banter and deep conversations they have ? Anyways at least this movie looks more appealing.

    • Ditto! Total agreement.

    • Rant away…its all true. Melissa skipped everything. At the same time in the outtakes did you see the one with Carlisle & Esme looking out the window at Bella & Edward? If they had Left that 6 second clip it could have made so much difference….that was Catherines choice…so they can share the screw ups. That was my favorite outtake. Catherine left the Cullen family dynamic out altogether.

      • I agree rant away. I think the movie completely missed the complex relationship that Bella and Edward have. Their conversations are some of the most poignant points in the book. She completely skips over Edward’s struggle to not kill Bella; it’s like an after thought in the movie. I think the movie is a pale comparison to the book and it did not have to be at all. The actors could easily have pulled off the more complex relationships. I am trying to be more optimistic about New Moon. If they have music playing over Bella and Edward getting back together I will scream right then and there.

      • sillygirl says:

        I know!! All of those deleted scenes should have remained in the movie. I LOVED the Carlisle Esme one! Too long? It would have added only about another 15-20 minutes to the film…if that. But they would have added so much to the story. Even the scene where Bella and Charlie are sitting in the diner and Bella says..”you know, I can cook”. I know it seems like nothing, but you would have gotten such a better feel for who Bella is with just that one simple line. Wow, looks like I’m still ranting 🙂

        • I guess I am just a bit bitter because they really skipped or edited down my favorite part of the book so much that it didn’t even seem the same. The chapters of the meadow, the confession, the cullens and then the end in the hospital were my favorite and all were just too basic. They didn’t even say I love you to each other for goodness sake.

      • I think it would be nice if they made movies just a bit longer, maybe not 3 hours, but they could leave in more. I think you missed the point that missed conversations = missed character development. The script relied too heavily on people already knowing the story.

        • Totally agree. I was so annoyed when Catherine acted surprised that everyone wanted “Blood Typing” in and said, “Well, I couldn’t add any more. It was already too long at almost two hours!”

          At least we don’t have to worry about that with Chris. I was reading the Companion last night and he was talking about how the first cut of New Moon was three hours long. He said that in order to cut it down he shortened some scenes, but didn’t delete ANY! Isn’t that so cool??

  2. I disagree somewhat seeing as the decision to put music in lieu of conversation is a directorial one… there was obviously dialogue during those moments in the movie… the fact that we didn’t get to hear it had little to do with Melissa, in my opinion. I am not saying CH is not talented… I think she made a few mistakes , i.e. the conversation/music thing but I really think it had everything to do with her puny budget. Twilight could have been so much more. Judging from the trailers/clips of New Moon… I think we are in for quite a pleasant change. … a proper blockbuster budget is making all the difference. Thank goodness Summit is finally giving the movies the money they deserve!!!

    • anh
      you said “I disagree somewhat seeing as the decision to put music in lieu of conversation is a directorial one… there was obviously dialogue during those moments in the movie… ”
      If you listen to the the director’s cut when they are talking over the movie, CH says that she just told them to look like they were talking so I don’t believe that there was actual lines that they took out.

  3. They did not omit the family dynamic altogether. I think some fans have a difficult time accepting that a massive series must be distilled into a movie that doesn’t drag on. They showed the baseball game, how Edward’s family wanted to make Bella feel comfortable, etc. It was a cute kitchen scene. We also saw some close moments when they were discussing how to proceed with hiding Bella. Carlisle’s line about family in the movie was touching.

    If you want to try to make a movie that has to remain under three hours out of a book of such size, be my guest.

  4. Lunna-san says:

    Matt, I agree that making an adaptation of a novel is difficult. But she’s a profession and she’s up to recive criticts. Especially from fans.

    And for me, Twilight movie was bad written. I’m sorry, but it was. I didn’t watch to an adaptation of the novel. I watched to a version of Twilight. Which is very different. It’s like they did with “Princess Diaries”. The protagonist is there and somethings that happened in the book are there. But something is off.

    And what was off in Twilight was B&E’s love. The Cullens were great. I agree with you. But the meadow scene was a nightmare. It’s my favorite part on the book and she messed up. It happens. I hope she’ll do better in New Moon. Let’s see. I really do.

    • I didn’t have any issues with the relationship in Movie 1. I thought that the meadow scene was particularly well-done, especially when Edward was demonstrating his enhanced attributes to Bella in a frustrated way. When he’s protecting her from James and tells her that she is his life, there’s definitely a sense that they share an incredible bond. I wasn’t disappointed.

      Different views for each fan, though. To each their own.

  5. I don’t like Melissa’s comment about how every scene has to move the story forward. What Twilight lacked was the development of Bella and Edward’s relationship, the story was moving too fast. Kristen and Rob did so well in the Edward’s bedroom scene that it would’ve been great to see a couple more scenes like that. Just them being together and talking. I sure hope Melissa and Chris got this right in NM, the beginning of the movie will be crucial in the sense that in order to miss Edward and understand Bella’s emotions when he leaves the audience has to feel that the relationship is real and means something. If it doesn’t come across like that, the reunion won’t have the effect it has in the book. The trailer looks promising though, I really trust that Chris knows what he’s doing.

    • I agree. Little things like Edward kissing Bella on the forehead in that scene when he left because Billy and Jake were coming or his hand in the small of her back every now and then would have made a world of difference too.

  6. Am I the only one concerned with everyone saying Eclipse is darker??? I agree, there is a fight scene, and that in itself is ‘darker’ but that’s at the end of the book… the main story in the book is the love story between Bella and Edward and Bella and Jacob! And of course the love scenes and the proposal. I hope the ‘darkness’ is not overdone and only used in the appropriate places.

    • Thank God someone else is worried about that too! David Slade is without a doubt very talented; I’m just scared that he’s going to use his talent to stray further from the mood of the book.

    • Laura, you’re not alone, alot of fans caught that. It was such a lighter book (except for the fight of course) all about mending relationships, the Cullens & the wolves, Bella & Edward, Bella & Jake, even Jake & Edward.(to a point) come to a more generous understanding of one another. Who knows where they pulled dark from(I actually know from where but it is the Lexi) lol Again, did Melissa write it dark, or did David interpret it like that? If he did, I know he couldn’t possibly have done anything but skim thru the book….that would be taking more than artistic license, that would be heading in the opposite direction. There with you sister…..

  7. I wish the Lexicon would start a thread about the Companion because I am dying to talk to you guys about it!

  8. I agree w/ Laura… I loved Eclipse for the love story it was – there were only moments of fighting! As far as Twilight goes… the movie was a huge dissapointment for me. I do still love it, but I don’t know if it was CH’s fault or Kristin Stewart’s fault. Was she directed to show only one emotion? Or is that just her acting? I know the age may not have been right, but I would have loved to see Rachel McAdams play Bella. She just shows sooooo much more emotion. I’m really hoping that it was only the direction she was given. Almost everyone I know who saw Twilight thought the same thing. Where’s the flirtation between Bella & Edward? Bella expression was confused during the whole movie. She DID NOT look like a girl in love. Maybe because dialogue’s were left out, we weren’t able to grasp that “love”. I think Rob did an AMAZING job, and Kristin sure looks the part. I just want to see more depth with her.

    • i agree to some extent Singing Moon. The only time i felt Kristen looked like a girl in love was at the Prom when she asked why Edward didnt let the venom spread. Kristen looked like she really wanted to be with the man she loves forever! But in the first kiss scene she looked like a girl in lust!…lol

    • I don’t agree with u, but I respect your opinion… (plz understand, this is not bashing)I really don’t get why some of u guys don’t like KS… Why? Is she awkward? yes, she is. & ‘sides, she left very clear on the time of auditions (when they were looking for an actor to play Edward), she said that she only would make this movie if RP was the actor who’d play Edward… The same way she stand to defend TL to continue in the franchise, she did 1st with RP.

      • M.P…its not that we dont like Kristen,we just feel the ‘love’ between Edward and Bella wasn’t totally portrayed by her acting as Bella. She got the clumsy, shy,caring etc bit but not the i’ll-die-without-u love bit. Kristen even confessed in an interview that she played Bella as a more ‘strong’ female as oppose to a love-sick girl. She also said in an interview during filming of New Moon that she is only beginning to fully understand Bella’ character.But you’re right, i LOVE how she stood up for RPattz and TL!

  9. twilight + star trek fan says:

    omg some news about stephenie! you remember… she created the whole series… yea its not all about rob

  10. Well, the producers and the studio play a big role in this. I get the sense that everyone wanted a more intimate movie. The actors even thought it would be an indie project.

    If you know anything about Summit you’ll know that they saved Twilight from MTV and Paramount (now that would have been WORSE) but they or their markerters realized they had a hit on their hands, the movie was kinda in limbo. Not an intimate, cult or indie film but not with a blockbuster budget either.

    Better than before but not as great as it could have been adapted. Now that it’s a “sure thing” they throw money at it but in a blockbuster way.

    I get offended when they keep trying to market Eclipse to guys…as if guys can’t have emotions or be interested in romance.

  11. cont…

    And Summit still gave CH a hard time about things, if I’m correct (or remember correctly). Executives don’t get the art…they just want to secure the money. It’s great when they get critically aclaim but it’s not their #1 concern. Just listen to CH’s UCLA podcast about making Twilight.

    Oh, and check out this article about Summit:

    “Until now, tiny Summit Entertainment has been largely ignored by the major studios and looked down on by A-list agents and managers. But because of a classic bit of Hollywood bungling, the fledgling movie company finds itself sitting atop one of the biggest pop-culture phenomena of recent years.”


  12. Singing Moon says:

    Okay, I know people are complaining about Twilight & how certain things could have been a lot better, but as it’s stated in the companion, CH set the foundation for the rest of the films by giving us these actors/actresses. I’m very glad with the people they chose & their commitment to the films, as well as the fans. If you’ve ever watched the commentary, you’ll find out that they were low-budgeted plus they were filming during the writer-strike. Rob & Kristen had to ad-lib some lines (a.k.a the spider-monkey line as well as the hospital). So cut them some slack & try to enjoy what they did.
    Second, you’re not the only one who’s worried about David Slade directing Eclipse. I’m worried that they’re shooting this too fast & that the romance won’t be captured since he’s focusing more on fighting. I hope he realizes that a lot of the fight scene occurs between Edward, Victoria, Seth, & Riley. I hope they make Breaking Dawn & I hope they bring Chris Weitz back to direct it. I read the companion & he cares a great deal about the movie.

  13. Singing Moon says:

    The prom scene is one of my favorite parts. I cry almost every time I like it. But I think it’s a part of a relationship when you go through the first overpowering feelings where you want that person so bad & I think that’s what the bedroom scene depicts then the prom scene depicts their undying love for each other. At least that’s how I see it. And from the looks of New Moon, it seems like they’ll have quite a few of those loving scenes before Edward leaves & when he comes back.

  14. Singing Moon says:

    I think that it was right of her to potray Bella as strong rather than love-sick in Twilight. You’d have to be strong to fall in love with a vampire, especially someone who wants to drink your blood so badly. You’d have to be strong to walk into a room, knowing you’re going to die, to save your mom. You’d have to be strong to want to become a part of the Cullen family, to leave everything about your human life behind. I think Bella’s love-sickness & strength were shown at the right times. I also think we’re really going to experience her love-sickness in NM, but we’ll experience her strength when she saves Edward & goes before the Volturi. So in all honesty, I think she’s playing the part perfectly & I’m very glad she’s the one playing Bella.

    • I hope Bookie is right, in that she’s getting Bella more now as she’s going through the series. I don’t think I was ever more dissapointed with a character portrayal as I was with her Bella. In all honesty though, I’ve seen Kristin’s other movies and she acts the SAME way in those movies as well. I am not at all trying to bash here at all. I think she looked like a lovely Bella. I think the Prom scene was very good (mostly in part to the setting and the music… for once, romantic music in this love story and not alternative rock. Except for the Rob’s song in the restaurant scene… loved that!). I know this movie isn’t completely about Rob… or Edward. It’s Bella’s story! That’s why I was so dissapointed w/ Kristin’s portrayal. I think someone can play Strong (and not love sick) with still showing an emotion that doesn’t look mad and confused throughout the whole movie. I was so excited when my husband agreed to watch Twilight w/ me… and he actually liked it a lot 🙂 Except he got the same thing as me… “why does the girl look so mad all of the time? She looks annoyed and confused the whole movie. She has the same expression throughout the WHOLE movie. She doesn’t ever smile or look like she’s in love at all… even when she’s alone w/ Edward. She looks like she’s trying to hard with her acting.” I am very hopeful for the remaining movies, and can’t wait to see them as I LOVE the books so much!

      • I understand why people don’t like Kristen’s portrayal of Bella, but in my opinion she did a good job with it. Kristen’s Bella might not be what many of the fans expected, but that is unavoidable as everyone has their own idea of the character in their heads. I dare say we all put a lot of ourselves in our idea of Bella’s character and Kristen even more so as she has to actually play the role. Kristen brought HER Bella to life. I’m sad that so many people don’t seem to get what she’s doing with the character, she’s always criticized over her expressions. People are different, you know? Individuals. Kristen’s I’m-in-love -expression is going to look totally different from anyone else’s. Twilight the movie is Kristen and Rob’s version of the Bella/Edward love story (well, kind of, Catherine and Melissa’s in the first place actually), they brought their ideas and opinions to the characters.

        • I get what you’re saying, but I don’t think Kristen intended to play Bella exactly the way she did. When you listen to the commentary you can hear her annoyance at how much she blinks when she talks and some of the looks on her face. Even with the scene when Edward is sucking the venom out, she said that nobody told her she had gone cross-eyed. I think that we will see her portray Bella a little differently now that she has had this insight.

  15. I agree with everyone’s opinions. I was disappointed at first with Kristens portrayal as Bella and I thought they rushed through too much, leaving out the minor details that made the strength of their love obvious. On the flipside, readers have much more insight into Bellas head. From the outside, she was not “goo goo gaga” obvious. The look on her face in biology when they start talking was a dead giveaway that she was really falling for him. I’m not a huge fan of KStew because she does act the same in all her movies, but to me she’s Bella in all her movies. She makes a great Bella because you can see the internal turmoil but can see she’s trying so hard to hide it- to be that “martyr” as Edward called her

  16. In otherwords, as I watched it in more detail and really thought about it, my original opinion if Kristen as Bella was off and I grew to love her as Bella

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