No 'New Moon' For 'Twilight's' Taylor Lautner?

Director Chris Weitz may have inherited one of Hollywood’s hottest properties, when he took over the “Twilight” franchise from director Catherine Hardwicke, but he’s also been given a casting problem that has many Twi-Hards howling.

When Summit Entertainment announced Weitz’s new role as director, the press release also had a suspicious omission — Taylor Lautner, who played Jacob Black in the first film, was left out of it.

Many fans first thought this could have been a mistake by Summit Entertainment, but the company was quick to announce that casting for the character, who plays a major role in the second film as a werewolf, has not been decided.

“The casting decision in regards to the character Jacob Black has yet to be made,” a rep for Summit told MTV News.

As for who would replace Lautner, MTV reported that Michael Copon, from “Scorpion King 2,” is one of several actors being considered by Weitz.

Copon’s rep told MTV they are working hard to get Copon the role of Jacob.

The “Scorpion King 2” actor is even conducting his own guerilla marketing campaign on Facebook, with status updates that read, “Michael Copon [is] in a Twilight Zone!” and “Michael Copon is the older Jacob Black!”

Copon’s rep confirmed to MTV News that the Facebook page is run by the actor and that he made the status updates.

But, die hard Lautner fans still have a glimmer of hope when it comes to keeping the 16-year-old actor in “New Moon,” thanks to the visual effects company that turned Brad Pitt into an elderly baby in his upcoming movie.

According to Entertainment Weekly, Lautner’s agent has reached out to one of the visual effects company that worked on Pitt’s “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” in order to show Weitz and Summit how visual effects could create a digitally bulked-up Lautner, suggesting the possible casting change was based on Lautner’s physique.

In yet more “New Moon” casting news, “Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian” star Ben Barnes is angling for the role of Aro, “a mind-reading vampire whose ‘New Moon’ encounter with Edward and Bella helps shape their destiny together,” according to MTV.

It appears Summit and Weitz have a lot of decisions to make in a short time — “New Moon” begins filming in just 12 weeks.

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