You might remember a post written by Screen Rant guru Vic Holtreman back in February, which begged the question “Just How Fast CAN They Make a Twilight Movie?” in reference to the news that The Twilight Saga: New Moon was going to be released just one year after Twilight, with the third film in the franchise, The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, aiming for a release date just SEVEN MONTHS after New Moon!

Well, today we have an official answer to Vic’s question: almost faster than you could write that post, Holtreman.

Empire reports that The Twilight Saga: Eclipse is slated to start shooting on August 17, 2009, with the principal shoot scheduled to end on Halloween 2009. That means that the third Twilight film will already be in the can almost a month before the second film (New Moon) is even out in theaters!

Of course, this über-rushed shooting schedule is Summit Entertainment’s way of cashing in on the Twilight franchise while it’s still at the height (if you could call it a height) of its popularity. And Twilight fans, I’m sorry (Screen Rant has struck a tenuous truce with you guys in recent months), but if you think that this is anything but a BLATANT money-motivated exploitation of this series, you are deluding yourselves. For all the crap we’ve gotten in the past for slamming The Twilight Saga, it looks like the studio doesn’t care any more about the (alleged) “quality” of Stephenie Meyer’s books than a male over the age of sixteen does (if the f/x in that New Moon trailer are any indication).

Still, I’m sure some Twilight fans have already convinced themselves that Summit Entertainment is simply catering to their rabid desire for more Edward-Bella-Jacob creature-on-creature action. I won’t try to shatter that illusion any more than I already have. Plus, the news that 30 Days of Night director David Slade (above) will be helming Eclipse has made me slightly curious about the film (just slightly).

The Twilight Saga: New Moon is slated for release on November 20, 2009.

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse is slated for release two days later on June 30, 2010.

Source: Empire