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BAM Column: "Twilight: New Moon," Taylor Swift, Susan Boyle top charts in 2009

by Brandy McDonnell Published: December 8, 2009

Kristen Stewart stars in “The Twilight Saga: New Moon.”

From Tuesday’s Life section of The Oklahoman.

Women dominate song, film

Women entertainers and the audiences who adore them rocked the movie and music worlds in 2009 — and seem poised to power into next year.

“The Twilight Saga: New Moon” has illuminated the box office the past few weeks, with the vampire romance sequel biting off more than $230 million domestically in just 10 days. The second film based on Stephenie Meyer’s best-selling book series, “New Moon” quickly proved the strength of its fervent, mostly female fan base. Despite mixed-at-best reviews, the movie made after two weekends nearly $40 million more than the first film, 2008’s “Twilight,” took in during its entire 20-week run.

Even women who aren’t “Twihard” fans should celebrate “New Moon’s” rising. Hollywood typically counts on young men to keep the box office buzzing — which explains the cinematic careers of Michael Bay, Megan Fox and countless comic-book characters — but maybe the saga’s success will show the studios that women will flock to theaters if given good reason.

In music, the industry has seen the ascension this year of several mighty divas. Last week, Scottish reality TV standout Susan Boyle (pictured left), 47, sold more than 700,000 copies of her first album, “I Dreamed a Dream,” to debut at the top of the U.S. album charts. She notched the best first-week album sales of 2009 and scored the best-selling album debut by a woman in the Billboard SoundScan era. Boyle also saw her CD top the U.K. charts.

Country-pop star Taylor Swift, who turns 20 Sunday, has been riding a hot streak all year long. For the past few years, Swift (pictured right) has been among the music industry’s top sellers, and she cleaned up at practically every awards show in 2009. Even an insulting interruption by Kayne West at the MTV Video Music Awards couldn’t keep the “Fearless” singer-songwriter down.

Grammy-nominated country music artist Taylor Swift  poses for a photo at a hotel in the Universal City area of Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2008.   (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes) ORG XMIT: NY493
Grammy-nominated country music artist Taylor Swift poses for a photo at a hotel in the Universal City area of Los Angeles on Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2008. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes) ORG XMIT: NY493

Among her many trophies, Swift earned the top prize, entertainer of the year, at last month’s Country Music Association Awards. In April, Oklahoma star Carrie Underwood won the entertainer of the year title at the other major country awards, the Academy of Country Music Awards.

The girl power seems primed to continue: Last week, pop diva Beyonce earned a leading 10 nominations for the 2010 Grammy Awards, with Swift close behind with eight more chances at awards show glory.   

-BAM

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by Brandy McDonnell
Entertainment Reporter
Brandy McDonnell, also known by her initials BAM, writes stories and reviews on movies, music, the arts and other aspects of entertainment. She is NewsOK’s top blogger: Her 4-year-old entertainment news blog, BAM’s Blog, has notched more...
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