Big business for a 'New Moon' romance

Are they or aren't they a couple? That's the multimillion-dollar question fueling the "Twilight" franchise.

According to gossip magazines, Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart have been hooking up, breaking up, making up and shacking up for the past year. And as long as Pattinson and Stewart manage to keep fans guessing about the status of their relationship, they will manage to keep them captivated, helping to drive the box office sales for a movie that could have one of the biggest opening weekends of all time.

"Rob and Kristen become significantly less interesting as they confirm their love. The intrigue over Rob and Kristen stems from their youthful lust, and passion, and on-and-off, whirlwind relationship," said Jared Shapiro, executive editor of Life & Style Weekly, the first weekly magazine to put Rob and Kristen on their cover. "It's part of the fascination, that while real, they are also part fantasy."

Early on in the Rob-Sten (as MTV has begun to call them) mania, the pair issued denials of their love. Stewart claimed that in Rob she had found a "good buddy." Rob joked that he had asked Kristen to marry him several times but she just kept denying him.

But the press just kept digging, and as "New Moon" and "Eclipse" began filming in Vancouver the press was voraciously searching for any evidence at all that Rob and Kristen were an item: overanalyzing hand-holding on set, a steamier-than-expected love scene. Some outlets even called in body language experts to decode what a foot placement or arm cross meant for their relationship status.

"I must say the more forthcoming they have been lately with their romance, the more satisfying it is for me as an editor," Shapiro said.

As the opening of "New Moon" has gotten closer, jokes and denials have been replaced by radio silence and indignant how-dare-you-ask-me-thats.

Pattinson was ushered out of a radio interview this week by a handler after radio host Ryan Seacrest dared to ask him about his relationship with Stewart. Pattinson initially tried to work around the question but his staff, angry with Seacrest, gathered the star and told him his time was up.

Journalists who have been granted access to the stars prior to the movie's release have been told by the film's publicity team that they were not allowed to ask questions about their love life, especially when it comes to Pattinson and Stewart.

Stewart recently told Entertainment Weekly, "I probably would've answered [the romance question] if people hadn't made such a big deal about it. But I'm not going to give the 'fiending' an answer." ("Fiending" meaning celebrity press, of course.)

Bonnie Fuller, current editor-in-chief of and former head of magazines such as US Weekly and Star, believes that Stewart and Pattinson are actually a couple, confirmed by photos of the pair holding hands in Paris that emerged last week, but said that the dialogue the romance has created has absolutely helped to fuel the frenzy around the franchise.

"I think the romance is real. Look at the paparazzi pictures of them holding hands. I don't think they are a set-up," Fuller said. "Of course it is going to boost ticket sales and I think the producers just had the fortunate situation of having had their stars falls for each other."

Real or faux, on-set romances don't always translate into dollars at the box office. Persistent rumors of a love affair between Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie on the set of "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" generated enormous buzz for the film, which opened to more than $50 million in box office sales.

On the flip side, romantic ties between Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez could have contributed to the disastrous performance of their joint project, "Gigli," at the box office. "Gigli" generated only $3 million in its opening weekend.

"Co-star coupling is a mixed bag," said Borys Kit, senior film writer for The Hollywood Reporter. "Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck were dating when 'Gigli' became one of the biggest bombs of the decade because they were an unpopular couple to begin with. But on the flip side you had Brad Pitt and Angelina's romance helping to make 'Mr. and Mrs. Smith' a hit."

This Rob-Sten relationship could be one of two things. It could be a complete fauxmance, with Rob and Kristen playing the part of lovers to raise fan curiosity and drive interest in their films -- or they truly could have fallen in love, as so many actors have done before them, while spending endless hours together on the set.

Regardless of whether it is fauxmance or true romance, there is no denying that their refusal to discuss their romantic involvement just makes people hungry for more and drives them into the box office.

"Twilight" grossed more than $400 million in worldwide sales. "New Moon" had the most advance ticket sales of all time, according to online ticketer The Hollywood Reporter projects that the film will make at least $85 million in its opening weekend.

"Whether they are dating or not is almost incidental at this point," Kit said. " 'New Moon' is going to be huge regardless of Rob and Kristen dating."

via twicrackaddict


Rhonda said...

CNN weighs in. This is big stuff. LOL!

katie said...

It is big business-robert and robsten have sold many many issues for rags with sagging magazine sales.

At the same time, it compromises Robert too in terms of longevity. It stamps a "Edward 2010" on his forehead, the more he's associated with Twilight and with Bella and with all things tween Tiger beatish.

That's why I don't think he's a willing participant in all the frenzy around him. He's been put ina unique position, going 0 to 60 with celebrity, and a ravenous public wanting every square inch of his life exposed.

I think Kristen said it best honestly as to why she refuses to address it. She said she needs to keep something for herself.

That notion, especially when applied to Robert and how much he's had to give up of himself publicly in the last year, breaks my heart.

didiette said...

CNN?Really? I can't wait for Wolf Blitzer to discuss it on his show! lol

Anonymous said...

tout tourne autour de Rob et Kris à chaque article, ça me donne envie de vomir! Rob je suis fan de lui mais je suis un peu dégoutée par tout ça! tous le monde s'en fiche de lui, le plus important c'est de savoir si Robert et kris sont ensemble! pour moi les vrais fans il n'y en a pas beaucoup!

katie said...

oh, cnn tabloidized awhile ago, they've been following jonas and taylor swift and miley for ages. lol

Loisada said...

I honestly do not think the romance rumors fuel the franchise success. Too many women in Robland simply do not like Kristen. Likewise, these movies wouldn't be successful enough to become a "franchise" if only Twilight fans backed them. Even women who don't like Twilight and don't care about Robsten will fork over good money to see Rob, period.

Rob has captured the hearts of women the world over, not Edward, and that is the real motor of the Twilight movies' success. Robert fucktabulous Pattinson!

rpattzgirl survived Rob! said...

CNN? Really????

I agree Loisada..well said.

twmmy said...

That're my words Loisada !

Angie said...

Here, here Loisada, I agree.

lallieb said...

Loisada's makes a good point and allows me to say something that has bothered me. I can think of many reasons why Rob and Kristen want to keep their private lives private, but I can't think of many reasons why they would want to keep the speculation/gossip so high, and not just get it over with one way or another and then just retreat. They should have some control over their lives. But not doing that, feeds the notion I have seen expressed, that Summit may be encouraging this Robsten BS for the sake of the franchise? Does anyone think that is even possible and that they would be agreeable to doing that? I really don't, but I sure as hell would like to ask them and see what they had to say about that scenario. I hope this makes sense.

Karina said...

I think Robert and Kristen are doing what they think is easiest for them honestly, to not detail the exact nature of their relationship.

Kristen said as much in an interview a week ago--that she knows that answering the all important question will not make her life any easier.

If you think about it, it makes sense that if they are dating, confirmation will only make the fanbase fixate on her that much more.

The speculation will continue for the most part, whether they are fighting or mad or happy or sad. If Robert does one thing without her, they are fighting. lol

I think they just feel like it's a catch 22, and they are cutting their loses by simply not commenting.

Unknown said...

yeah, r/k are basically screwed.

they deny, the shippers will gut them.

they confirm, fangirls will shoot out Kristen's knee caps.


I wouldn't answer either, you answer the question, you take a stand, you make enemies of half the fanbase, and then the other half expects you to be together 4ever and married by the end of the year.

Forget that shizz, just keep your mouths shut, kids.

brijjiann said...

I think it's amazing how this has become such a hot topic. What does it have to do with their talent as actors? I'm perfectly fine watching both of them in movies(separately or together) and not knowing a thing about their personal lives.

Kimmie44 said...

I agree with so many of you. THese days how can one really know for sure what mag is really legit. Like with him and Kristen going to the soho and the avenue after the NY prem. There are no photos! Only 'eyewitness' and a 'inside source'. I'm sorry, but if they were together, damn why didn't someone take a freakin pic with their cell phone. Do you know how much that pic would have cost? And what about when they met up at the avenue supposably with Joan Jett. Damn where is all the paps. Myabe I'm being a stupidass, but I want pics not an 'eyewitness' or 'a inside sourc said' It doesn't matter if they are, it would not benefit them at all by answering. If they cam out and said, they will be watched even more: breaking up, cheating, moving in together. What I don't understand is why they are so adamant about not answering. I didn't even hear about the Ryan Seacrest deal. They are never ALONE in pics. I don't care, I just would like a confirmation. I love Rob regardless.

lallieb said...

Karina, thank you for breaking it down for me. You are right, it makes total sense. I couldn't get a grip on it from Kristen's explanation/denial, but I understand now.

Unknown said...

But how long could one commit to such a charade? If they've agreed to go with the rumors for the sake of PR, then that means they will have put their lives on hold -- eschewing all other potential love interests, essentially living a lie for the next 2+ years. I'm not saying this is impossible but it seems unlikely, especially for two people that are so young. And considering what we've seen of Robert and Kristen, does that even SOUND like something they'd do?

They refuse to even talk about their friendship, even though they know everyone is desperate to know and that they could lie to us all if they wanted to. They're not keen on media scrutiny and aren't media whores, yet they continue to spend their free time together knowing that the whole world is documenting every turn. Why would they put themselves thru all this trouble if they aren't seeing each other?

I feel like we keep asking but the answers are right in front of us...

MMc said...

I was at Barnes/Noble today and walked through the magazine section and like almost every magazine had Rob's face on was amazing. And they had tons of New Moon stuff, from bandages, to keychains, bookmarks and action figures and back packs and tshirts.
They are just milking this cow for every drop!

Unknown said...


"It doesn't matter if they are, it would not benefit them at all by answering. If they cam out and said, they will be watched even more: breaking up, cheating, moving in together. What I don't understand is why they are so adamant about not answering. I didn't even hear about the Ryan Seacrest deal. They are never ALONE in pics. I don't care, I just would like a confirmation. I love Rob regardless."

If they never announce a relationship, then they never have to answer to why they broke-up. If you don't invite people into your private life, then you never have to worry about kicking them out when they get nosy.

People say all the time "They never had a problem confirming or denying before. They're right: Kristen even said once that she wouldn't leave her BF for Rob. She invited the public into her private life with that one statement and people have been in in her business ever since. Lord knows Rob has been made to account for every quote he's ever given. If they've gone silent, I'd like to think it's because they know better than to open up. Smart kids.

fanFE said...


fanFE said...

I have to agree with Loisada too.I went to watch NM only to see Rob.Even for this 10 min. of him on screen,and I will spent my money again to see him one more time.Twilight became a phenomenon only because of Rob.I had no idea who was Stephanie Meyer bc I never liked vamp books.Rob's face and PERSONALITY make me a Twilight fan,and maybe Rob owns his casting as Edward to Kristen TOO (as Kristen's fans like to point all the time)but

she became familiar to me after her name was linked with Rob's.

beyonce said...

kimmie-oftentimes stars are given preferential treatment and clubs and what not, given more privacy or placed in a more exclusive section of a club. People in that environment tend NOT to make a scene with a cellphone shot, it would seem very tacky. And they are n't exactly brangelina, they are these young kids no one ever heard of until this year.

The way to see if the soho and avenue story makes sense is to see if you get more than one source placing them there, and to see which magazines will pick up the story.

OK is never to be trusted. US is not much better. People is better, but has been unreliable with robert in the past for instance.

But Vanity Fair actually confirmed the soho and avenue spot, and they are not a gossip y magazine, and the article they confirm this in was not shippy at all, more about robert seeming to shun the spotlight:

Loisada said...

Yves, I agree wholeheartedly, and as I said in another thread:

Don't know how anyone can still think he should just "man up" and give us deets on his private life... it would NOT end the frenzy but just fan the flames and make people expect him to keep sharing things that are personal.

Rob DESERVES a private life, and once fans get that in their heads, and stop wanting to get inside the poor boy's pants (figuratively of course, because every hot blooded lady wants inside that jackpot literally!), then the pappz will back off and find another target.

This is a waiting game: who will give up first, R&K? Or the pappz and the tabloids? Fans can be fickle, and the tabs will follow the next hot trend.... when it finally appears. Can't Britney start going out without panties again?!?!

rpattzgirl survived Rob! said...

you make a very good point as well.. If they never confirm the relationship they never have to explain the break up..

They have to keep some part of their lives to themselves and let people make of it what they will.., people are still going to say what they belive/want, no matter what they admit or deny..

They are being very smart... I just want them to be happy together, apart, lovers or friends..

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