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Nov 21, 2009 at 04:13pm IST

Vatican offcials slam Twilight series

London: The Roman Catholic Church has expressed concerns over the growing popularity of the Twilight series, as Vatican officials have called the vampire franchise a "moral vacuum with a deviant message".

The worldwide hype of the series has drawn criticism from the Vatican, with officials urging parents to be more vigilant about the type of films their children are watching, reports a website.

"The theme of vampires in Twilight combines a mixture of excesses that as ever is aimed at young people and gives a heavy esoteric element. It is once again that age-old trick or ideal formula of using extremes to make an impact at the box office. This film is nothing more than a moral vacuum with a deviant message and as such should be of concern," said Monsignor Franco Perazzolo of the Pontifical Council of Culture.

VAMPIRE SERIES: The Twilight Saga: New Moon will hit cinemas on Friday worldwide.

The second film in the vampire series, The Twilight Saga: New Moon, hit cinemas on Friday worldwide.

Vatican officials previously criticised the Harry Potter film franchise for its themes of magic and wizardry, as well as Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons for their depiction of the Catholic Church.