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‘Twilight’ comes to campus in double feature

The Southwest Film Center (SWFC) held a double feature on Saturday, Feb. 3 of “Twilight: Breaking Dawn” parts 1 and 2, showing that community that can be found both in movies and in a movie theater.

The Student Union Building theater was decorated with “Twilight” references and filled with “Twilight”-inspired outfits. The event included “blood bags” – fake blood bags filled with Sprite, red food coloring and sparkles, which were reserved for the first ten attendees.

Theatre manager Stefan Rossell explained that the blood bags were meant to be an incentive to movie-goers to come early, and it worked. Over ten people were at the doors before they opened officially.

The first person in line was University of New Mexico student Gracie Bauman, who said that her group of friends had been preparing for the showing. Bauman explained that part of the popularity comes from the community that surrounds the movies. She said that her sister got her interested originally.

“We just spent the last couple of weeks watching all of (the movies) to get ready,” Bauman said. “We (came) to the conclusion that if it wasn’t a saga – and it was just the first (movie) – it would not be as popular.”

UNM student and SWFC regular Willow Glenn said that she has been a fan of the saga since she was 14 and has written six episodes of a “Twilight” fanfiction television series. 

“It’s a horrible movie – it’s the best movie, duality,” Glenn said. “I’m proud they put it in the theater because the best part was people’s reactions.”

The double feature was shown in collaboration with UNM’s chapter of Planned Parenthood’s Generation Action. Vice President Marysa Apodaca said that the organization was excited to collaborate on the movies as many of their members enjoy the series.

“With this collaboration, we’re hoping to get our name out there – not only as a student organization, but as a resource on campus, and provide a safe space to discuss topics around reproductive health and sexual education,” Apodaca said.

Southwest Film Center Executive Director, Rylee Norman, said that collaborators will pick the movie that they want to work on from the upcoming schedule, then table at the event, alongside providing concessions.

“We want to reach more people when it comes to Generation Action. When you’re coming to a fun event and get to hear about this awesome organization, I think it’s better received (and)  reaches more people that way,” Norman said.

Generation Action has worked with the SWFC twice before – the first time during their annual Sex Week in 2022 showing “Portrait of a Lady on Fire.”

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Rossell designed the film lineup for this semester. When designing a lineup, the staff takes into consideration other events on campus as well as holidays, Norman said.

Rosell explained that they chose to do a double feature because it felt more social and community-oriented. They did not want to make people wait another night for the second part, Rosell said.

This semester, Norman said they would start with college films, move into romance, then into realistic and thought-provoking, then animation and end with futuristic films.

The SWFC hopes to create a space where people can hang out without having to spend money, Norman said. When she became Executive Director, Norman stopped charging for admission and concessions at the showings.

“We want to be a third space where you do not have to pay to be there and have fun,” Norman said. “You can come with your friends (or) come and make friends and have community (without worrying) about finances or anything like that.”

Bauman said that her group usually gets together to watch movies, and then goes to La Posada afterwards.

“It’s great because you get to pass by them every time you go past the concessions. You get  information (about the program) and you don’t have to pay,” Bauman said. “It’s free which makes it easier to come and see movies rather than go to a movie theater.”

Marcela Johnson is a beat reporter for the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted at or on Twitter @DailyLobo.

Marcela Johnson

 Marcela Johnson is a freelance reporter for the Daily Lobo, and the editor-in-chief of Limina: UNM Nonfiction Review.  

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