FearNet: Melissa Rosenberg Melissa Rosenberg on New Moon, Edward’s Proposal, and Breaking Dawn

Jen Yamato has this week’s Twilight special up on FearNet and it is well worth the read.  As usual Jen asks the questions that fans want to know!

In your script for Twilight, you wrote in a number of direct quotes from Stephenie Meyer’s book. Can we expect the same in New Moon and Eclipse?

There are definitely some quotes sprinkled throughout. In some cases I’m paraphrasing, but I do try to include as many as I can. It’s very important. It brings the flavor of the book into the movie, so I definitely try to.

Fans want to know: Did the proposal scene make it into New Moon?

The proposal comes into the end of New Moon, and that is the first proposal. Absolutely in Eclipse, the proposal when they’re on the bed, yes — to me, that was a quintessential scene from the book. When Edward gets on his knees, with his mother’s ring, and she says yes — that was one of the most romantic scenes that Stephenie wrote in all four books.”

Get the rest on Fearnet


  1. FilDeCuivre says:

    I’m so glad the proposal scene is in the movie, too! I heard that someone said there wasn’t it in some version of the script..

    • Amie(vampwolf) says:

      i would not have been surprised if they had left it out. they have not been doing well with writing the script

      • How would you know? Only ONE movie has come out so far??? Chill!!!

      • First of all there are a lot of movies that are PG-13 and have blood, violence as well as love scenes that do them justice without being overly graphic….just like the love scenes from the book! The birth thing can totally be done in a good descriptive way without going into R territory.
        Second of all I think I read somewhere a while ago (before Twilight came out) that Stephenie has it written into her contracts that the movie versions of her her books will NOT be rated R. PG-13 only or lower. So if I’m remembering correctly, this argument is moot because there is no way BD will be rated R simply because Stephenie says so!!

    • Maybe they didn’t mean that the proposal didn’t exist, just that it didn’t exist in the same way as the book.

      I remember reading a quote from Chris regarding the proposal. He said something along the lines of “Yes, the first proposal will still happen, but not exactly the same as in the book. It will be quite sudden and unexpected. The whole conversation will be done in just a matter of seconds”. Or something to that effect.

  2. emilypruitt says:

    The Proposal Scene in Eclipse is hands-down one of my top 3, if not THE top, scene of the entire saga in my mind. Thank GOD it was written, now if it can just stack up to the way i envision it everytime i read, i can die a happy woman.

  3. M. Rosenberg butchered the Twilight script and is second only in abomination status to C. Hardwicke’s watered down Twilight vision.

    However, I have high hopes for NM and E.

    Forgive the rant.

  4. Melissa Rosenberg has done a fantastic job transferring the book to script in Twilight and I’m really looking forward to the next two films. However, I don’t agree with her that one could do a PG 13 version of Breaking Dawn. This would be an insult to every wake mind. You can’t build up all the sexual tension and violence and then not deliver in the end. At some point the audience has to see things and not just infer them from context. Don’t get me wrong, this is not about a voyeuristic need to see some skin and blood but about the logic of storytelling.

    • But you see, SMeyer even writes it as PG13. There’s nothing graphic except for the birth and if you look at the content of some other PG-13 movies it would be easy to keep the same sexual tension and whatnot in the movie without making it almost porno, as most rated R movies go. There is a tasteful way that it can be done that has been seen many times before.

    • What violence exactly? As far as I can recall, Breaking Dawn is probably the least violent of the four books. One of the Denali sisters gets killed, and the discription of the birth was a bit gruesome I guess but there are ways and ways… As far as sexual tension, I dont think a movie has ever not made pg13 on tension alone. And there is nothing i would consider graphic in terms of sex in the book. I know cause I remember being disapointed with all the fade-outs 😛
      If what you want is a more detailed, hyped up version of the book, which movies sometimes do, I can understand, and I kinda want it too. But in any case, Breaking Dawn can certainly be done pg13 without loosing any integrity.

  5. Sharon Lopitz says:

    Will there be a movie for the whole Twilight saga ?

  6. I agree with Tina… Breaking Dawn it’s not supposed to be PG 13, I mean the book is way too complicated … I’m looking forward to see how it all ends…

    • I agree that you can’t have Breaking Dawn be PG 13 unless you totally skip around Isle Esme and the whole Renesmee birth scene. I think if you skipped both of those scenes or tried to play them down then the nonreaders wont know whats happening. Not to mention those who did read the books will be upset that all the details were exposed in writing yet can’t be transported onto the screen. I really think that Breaking Dawn isn’t really an appropriate book for those under 13 to understand anyways, so having the movie be Rated R is no big deal. If people under 13 did read the book then they should be able to sit through the movie with all the scenes included exactly like the book told them to be.

      I’m not trying to be negative, but anyone who can’t handle a Rated R movie for Breaking Dawn probably shouldnt have read the last book. If you can read the birth scene from the book then you should be able to see it in the movie. You can’t get around that scene without all the blood and gore.

  7. I’m not so happy with her. I feel like she isn’t writing the movies true to the books. Twilight was pretty much butchered. As far as Breaking Dawn goes, she’s totally wrong! I feel like one of the main parts of the book is the violence and sexual scenes, and cutting those out or “implying” them is just not gonna work. Bottom line, if your to young to know that married people actually have sex (even if it’s a vampire) then your way to young to read or understand these books and see the movie.


    • I disagree. Twilight was certainly not butchered, and I say this as a long-time fan of the books. As an adaptation, it remained true to the source, covering all of the main events without being bogged down by others.

      Furthermore, I agree with her about keeping a PG-13 rating for BD. Do you seriously want a Twilight movie that’s rated R, which would potentially cut down its audience by alienating parents that have taken their kids to the earlier films? In the books, it was all implied, anyway.

      • I don’t know. Twilight seemed a little “light” to me, when it is an emotional book. Bella & Edward’s relationship went WAY to fast, that was my main complaint.

        As for Breaking Dawn, I do not agree. I think that SOME was implied, but you also the turmoil Edward went through, which is a “sexual scene” in a sense.
        To add to that, Renesmee’s birth is totally the center of the whole book. If that is not shown, what is there then? That’s when Bella is about to die. That’s when Edward cracks. That’s when Jacob imprints.

        • Same goes to me and my friends! not to mention my cousins!!
          their love story went so fast i didnt even get it at first.thats why i read the book and wow, the book was amazingly soooo much better than the movie. as for new moon, i think its gonna be awesome. i mean,just watch the trailers!cool,awesome,ahmayzing,cant wait. hope the movie’s great.if it is,im gonna watch it atleast 4 times in the theatre.

          ps, i wasnt such a reader until i read twilight. thanks to stephanie meyer 😀

        • I, and all of my friends, would be very happy and everything if a pro.director would re-direct twilight. its so hasnt been done right!too fast and so..not-really-twilight-like (u get the point, right?)they fall in love too soon. EVERYBODY’s agreeing. try a survey or something,or just read the comments flooding this post.

    • Also, BD was certainly not all about the violence and sex. In the book, the sex was implied, and I’d rather not see some trashy, extended sex scene in the theaters like Watchmen.

      • I agree with you Matt, I totally think the BD can be PG-13. If we think about some of the PG-13 movies that have been released, they get away with a lot of things. Really the only criteria that calls for an R rating are full-nudity, excessive swearing, and excessive gore, and none of those things are anywhere in the book.

        Admittedly the birth scene will be difficult, but that is more up to the director, than the script writer.

      • Agreed 100%

    • I agree. I was really diappointed with Twilight. If I was someone who watched the movie without reading the book first, I would have wondered what the big deal with the books is. She ripped the heart and soul out of it, I’m keeping my fingers crossed for New Moon and Eclipse. I am glad the scene in the bedroom with Edward’s proposal made it in, hopefully the tenderness didn’t get stripped out.

      • vicariousfun I saw the movie prior to reading the books. I went out and bought the books to figure out what all the hub-bub was about. I mean, I liked the books but couldn’t understand WHY they were so big.
        translated – MR and KH obviously missed the mark in turning a great book into a great movie. They totally missed out on developing the love story between B & E. If they had a problem with time, they should have left OUT all that nonsense they added and stuck closer to the book.

  8. LaTuaCantante says:

    Bummer, my work blocked the site so I can’t read the whole article 🙁 Story of my day so far. Anyhow, I’m glad the proposal scenes made it into the script. I don’t know how they would do the movies without it.

  9. I have to agree with whomever said Twilight was butchered. I think it was a very light adaptation of the book. It left out or skimmed over some of the most important parts of the book. The movie does very little to adequately portray Edward’s struggle not to kill Bella, to do the right thing and stay away from her, eg. the chapters in the meadow, him staying over that first night and frankly the scene in the hospital is simply sad and weak compared to the powerful emotions and language in the book.

    I think you have subtle romance, love, and violence to keep the PG-13 in BD. There is nothing implied in the books it is very real. Stephenie just chooses not to give us all the details and allows us to use our imaginations.

    • There is nothing in BD that couldn’t be PG-13. I’d rather not see an extended, trashy sex scene, since it was very much implied in the books. It is still very possible to tastefully show a lot of these scenes without going overboard and making it an R-rated film.

      Furthermore, I will disagree about the movie. As an adaptation that had to remain around two hours, it worked exceptionally well. In the books, they focused entirely on Bella’s perspective, so the film did a nice job of showing Edward’s reactions.

      • It was not really “implied” in the book – sure it was no ‘letters to Penthouse’, but I don’t think it was at all ambiguous what was happening. It was quite erotic in that ‘less is more’ sense, actually. That being said, I don’t see how it would be possible to keep the intensity that is so integral to this part of the story and still keep the visuals – even if only implied – PG-13.

        Maybe I’m looking at it the wrong way by confusing ‘what would be appropriate for a 13 year old to watch’ and ‘what they can get away with putting in a pg-13 film’.

        • sillygirl says:

          SM totally yadda yaddaed over the sex scenes in BD. Eclipse was more racey than BD was. All we read was about Edward kissing her and than it was the next morning.
          In order for BD to be an R movie, we would have to see full frontal nudity from Bella (Kristen) which would be completely unnecessary. I think when something is implied it makes it more intriguing. Besides, it is written in Stephenie’s contract that all movies have to be given a PG-13 rating. So even if they wanted to ruin it by making it an R movie, their hands are tied…

          • GrayPanther says:

            Did you actually read the book–the parts where Edward discusses being a product of the turn of the 20th cetnury–not turn of the 21st century? He even mentions how surprised he was to find that he was GOOD at kissing as he had never kissed anyone before. Young men and women in America in 1918 didn’t do that–at least they didn’t do that in the upper-class MidWest–remember this predated the excesses of the Jazz Age. He mentions his virginity obliquely in all the books. There is NO yada yada yada–it is what it is–that’s why the books were classified as young adult lit. Jeez–you watch too much “True Blood”

  10. I don’t mind not seeing the sex scenes. Like Matt said, they were implied. but i really want to see all of the Edward getting Renesmee out stuff without it being watered down. That scene needs to be pretty intense.

  11. I don’t find that she did that great of a job and as for the quotes in Twilight she didn’t put that many in didn’t even put Do I dazzle you in there. I hope she does a better job on the other movies or get someone else.

    • sillygirl says:

      Not to mention that we didn’t hear Bell say “Holy Crow” even once!!!
      Do I dazzle you so should have been in there!!!

  12. Can we have a do-over of Twilight? LOLOL

    The first movie wasn’t given the budget it deserved and just imagine what it would be like if they did it again with a bigger budget and a different director!

    I swear…I’d go see it again!!!

    • I’m with you, I’m all for a Chris Weitz Twilight do-over! Didn’t The Incredible Hulk get a do-over?

    • I wish they would remake it too. Twilight the book is one of my favorite love stories. But Twilight the movie is starting to gather dust on my shelf.

      It’s a tragedy because those around us that haven’t read the book will never know how amazing that story is meant to be.

      Maybe one day BEFORE we look like Grandma Swan someone will remake the series. It’s not much of a stretch when you think about how many times remakes have been made of Pride & Prejudice, Romeo & Juliet and Wuthering Heights.

      Then we’ll get to fall in love with Edward and Jacob all over again – and that will never be a bad thing!

    • … and if they DO remake Twilight sometime in the future, they will be able to include Edward’s POV because Midnight Sun will have been finished (hopefully).

      It would be incredible to get to see scenes like Edward composing Bella’s lullaby with her bottle cap on top of his piano.

    • yes, a redo would be great. I doubt you could get the cast to do it. It’s unfortunate it wasn’t done right to begin with.

    • I couldn’t agree more with all of you. I’d love to see Chris Weitz re-do Twilight. I’m really glad the proposal scene in Eclipse made it to the movie.

  13. I agree with whoever said that this woman did not do a good job on Twilight. Shallow, weird conversation.. Yeah, there was a ‘weird vibe’ in the book too, but in the book it was all explained by Bella and we understood what the deal with the two was. Their conversation in the film and waaaaay too soon falling in love thing just gives me the creeps. There should have been more scenes where they get to know each other, like the cafeteria scene where she sits with Edward. I dont know, i feel like this writer could have done a much better job.. Maybe it was just the whole mix of Catherine’s “modern age” awful blue hue, weird music in random places and the shallow writing. New Moon should be better with the warm tint of the movie and different director.

  14. I’m saying this as a person who watched the movie before reading the books. There were a LOT of blanks in the flick, I don’t think the film conveyed a lot of the feelings adequately.

    I’m on the fence whether BD could be PG-13. I don’t want all blood and gore, but I DO want the depth of their commitment, love, etc. I DO want to feel that this is true love, realized love. If you’re old enough to read the books, then you can old enough to see the movie. I’m not going to worry about the parents who let their 10 year olds read the books and whether the rating works for them!

    • totally agree with you
      saw the movie prior to reading the books
      after reading the books, THEN I got it
      what a shame and a missed opportunity
      You know what they say
      “Don’t judge a book by its movie”

  15. Can’t we just move past this and look forward to the rest of the movies? This has all been hashed out over and over and over.

  16. Overall, I think she is doing a pretty good job bringing the books to screen, from what we’ve seen so far, anyway.

    But it really hurts my heart to hear that Breaking Dawn will remain PG-13. It is simply NOT the same level of storytelling as Twilight, which really is a sweet teen love story in comparison. I’m sorry, parents, if you can’t have the same family-night-out movie-going experience with your under-13 children as you did with Twilight, but are you honestly letting a child under 13 even READ Breaking Dawn??? It is NOT a children’s book! Not even close! This is much heavier subject matter and it is full of violence and sexuality. Take out those elements and you got a whole lot of nothing. Please don’t kill the best and final chapter of our beloved saga for some pre-teen box office $$$s.

    • I agree. I get chills every time I hear a 9 year old drooling over “Edward”. I have to stop myself from grabbing the mother and yelling “Do you have ANY idea what your daughter is reading??”

      I have no idea why there is even a discussion going on about bowing down to a section of the population that shouldn’t be reading Breaking Dawn anyway.

      But what I really don’t understand is how a company can be discussing ways to do sex scenes and gore so children can watch it, and then people wonder how kids are becoming over sexualized at such a young age? Yeah, it’s a complete mystery to me too!

      If children don’t have to wait for anything, what do they have to look forward to?

  17. She did a horrible job with Twilight, so i hope New Moon and the following are better done. Thank god for great directors like chris and David who will change as they need to.

  18. cheering4twi says:

    Great interview, gives me great insight into why she nails it, everytime.

  19. cheering4twi says:

    I definately agree with her comment that sometimes something that is inferred has greater power than something that is seen. Less is more.

  20. I didn’t think that Twilight was done very well. I couldn’t feel the intense love that Bella and Edward felt for eachother. When they were in the meadow, it was something they shared together. Not something he draged Bella to. Edward and Bella both smiled more. They made eachother happy. It was hard for them to be be togther, but not all the time. In the movie I got the feeling the Bella was scared of Edward, but in the book that was the problem. She wasn’t scared enough. I know that somethings need to change to make a book a movie. The Twilight adaption change the whole tone of the book.
    Sorry for the rant 🙂 I just hope the other movies will be better. New Moon look fantastic!!!

    • yes, It unfortunately it looks like from some of the clips of New Moon it’s spilled over. Bella and Edward still don’t look comfortable together, what gives. It wasn’t that way in the books, after the meadow scene their whole relationship changed and the were very at ease with each other. very disappointing.

  21. GrayPanther says:

    Melissa Rosenberg is a lazy writer whose imprint (and mental and verbal shorthand) is all over the first project as well as many of the little tidbits that have shown up on the internet. She has certain little phrases she uses in her writing as well as phrases she borrows from others such as Strphenie that show up on her other projects. I did not realize it til I reviewed Dexter season 1 and 2 recently–imagine my surprise when a few of Dexter’s little bon mots were finding their way into Twi’s 1st script (and vice versa) as well as into the little teasers we see on the new Twi movie.

    I know, I know–the totally out of character Spider Monkey line wasn’t hers, but I think she could have been truer to the book and told the same story with the same brevity that a screen play demands. What we hope to see in all these movies is Stephenie’s over the top romance as well as some of her more memorable lines delineating those ideas. Stephenie’s story was memorable enough that paraphrasing should be kept to a minimum.

    What I see is a screenwriter putting in a minimum amount of time into a screenplay while working at her primary job (Dexter) and certain amount of bleedover as the lines are coming from the same fertile imagination–she said somewhere that she was ‘adapting’ (rewriting) the Twi books on the weekends while writing for Dexter during the week. Not that anyone cares, but the producers for the last movie should consider an open call for screenplays rather than just calling on Melissa Rosenberg again. I’d like to see Stephenie working more closely with a screenplay author or even trying her hand at writing her own screenplay–then we would know which parts of the story she thinks merit emphasis.

    Just my 25cents worth.

    • Thank you! Amen to that. I didn’t mind the spider monkey comment even though it was totally out of character for both of them. I guess at that point I was so disillusioned by the movie, that nothing surprised me anymore. I don’t mind add-ins if they make sense, but deletions for no particular reason drive me crazy. I am cautiously optimistic about NM. The clips have been encouraging and at the very least will be a much more appealing movie visually. No more blue, woo hoo.

  22. Well I hope she kept “The clouds I can handle but I can’t fight with an Eclipse” line because that scene is so crucial, painful and gut wrenching!!!

  23. If I have said it once I wish they would have dumped Melissa Rosenberg as soon as they saw what a horrible job she did on Twilight. I wish they would re-do Twilight & do Breaking Dawn asap since the series takes place over such a short period of time.

    I am not sure why they left so many crucial scenes from the book out. I am especially shocked they left out the meadow scene and that Stephenie didnt force them to add it since that is where Edward and Bella were first seen by her. I am really curious to see how they will have Bella searching for the meadow in New Moon or if they will just leave that as well.

    I do not understand why they left out the blood typing scene, Alice’s entire back story, Bella always cooking for Charlie, Jasper’s abilities & the affect he had on Bella in the hotel, Tyler asking Bella to the girls choice dance or better yet showing up to take her to prom, and all the Cullens at the prom just to name a few.

    I do not understand why they handled Bella finding out about the Cullens the way she did. Why couldnt they have just stuck to the book and had Jacob tell her?????

    I do not understand why they added scenes like the field trip or the death of Waylon Forge or why they had Rosalie comment on being able to smell Bella in the field when Alice was really the one that said it. Why mess with perfection????

    The biggest disappointment to me was that no where was the relationship between Bella and Edward formed. I was left wondering where did they show the tie that binds them???? They just seem like obsessed teenagers with no real bond when one was truly formed and it really kills me!!!!!

    I did like that they added a few things from Midnight Sun.

    I am really nervous for New Moon!!!! I know a lot of people seem confident this one will be better because there is a new director but Melissa Rosenberg still wrote the screenplay which I think is where the issue lays…..

    I have grown to love these characters and really hope the rest of the films do a better job sticking to the books. I am praying they show the back stories of the rest of the characters the way they were done in the books since they are all so crucial to the story. It will be especially crucial to see Rosalie’s to understand the turn in Bella and her relationship in Breaking Dawn.

    I read somewhere that they are concerned over the length of the films but to me they need to extend the film times rather than try and fit 700 pages in 120 minutes and do them the right way. The way they deserve to be done. I know I am counting on it.

    Oh wow that was a lot of rambling, sorry!!!!!!


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