Bill Condon wasn't on hand with the rest of his The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2 cast at the Comic Con panel today, but he popped up in a video message with a surprise that might have been better than the presence of Robert Pattinson. Condon showed us the opening 7 minutes of the movie, which kicks off precisely where the first half of Breaking Dawn ended-- Bella opening her eyes to reveal herself as a newly minted vampire, with red eyes and especially great eye makeup. Want to know more? Of course you do.
If you caught the film's teaser trailer that focused on Bella hunting, you've got the gist of the first 7 minutes. After Bella wakes up, squeezes Edward in a slightly too-strong hug thanks to her new vampire powers ("It's your turn not to break me," he says), and asks to see her new baby, Edward tells her she needs to "take care of your hunger" first. They take off in the woods, running at that surreal fast speed we've seen from the other vampires in the previous movies-- the effects aren't quite finished, so it's hard to tell how the effects hold up. Eventually they stop in the forest and Edward tries to train her to listen for what she's hunting and go for a deer. Instead, she smells the blood on a guy who cut his knee mountain climbing nearby. She tries to go after him, Edward finally talks her out of it, so she jumps back into the forest to get that deer-- and that's where it gets really crazy.
Just as Bella is about to go after the deer, a mountain lion creeps up to try and get it too-- and Bella goes for the prize and takes down the damn mountain lion. Seriously! She leaps on it, wrestles it to the ground, then bites its neck, in a scene that probably would be more fun and gory in an R-rated movie, but is still perfectly nuts for a Twilight movie. This is the scene that might make the entire movie worth seeing.
Edward and Bella then return to the house for a bit of an anti-climax-- they run into Jacob, he makes some typical digs about how "human" she looks, and she sniffs him to test that she can handle being around her human baby. Damn, Jacob, always gotta be a third wheel!
That was it for the first 7 minutes, but they later revealed another clip from a different part of the movie, where Bella has to try and appear human so she can visit with her dad. The advice from the vampire Cullens proves just how hard this is-- you have to remember to blink and look like you're breathing, you can't walk too fast or sit up too straight, and you have to wear contacts. But the scene is surpassingly funny, and not just by Twilight standards. I think we've been underestimating Kristen Stewart's knack for physical comedy this whole time.
Aside from the footage, of course, there was an entire panel and Q&A, which you can read all about in my liveblog here!