With the fourth Twilight movie in production and all three of the films so far showing on Sky this November and December, we find out exclusively from the franchise’s young stars whether three really is a crowd. Interview: Jenny Cooney. (spoilers below)
“They never do the kissing scenes when I’m on set, so you genuinely feel like someone’s cheating on you!”
When Sky Movies Magazine sits down with the lead actors from the Twilight franchise – Kristen Stewart (Bella), Robert Pattinson (Edward) and Taylor Lautner (Jacob) – it’s immediately evident just how close these young A-listers are.
Which is not surprising given how much their lives have changed in the two years since the first Twilight movie was released in 2008. Overnight, Stewart (18 at the time), Pattinson (22) and Lautner (then just 16) became teen idols, swept away in an incredible wave of Twilight mania.
Now, as they approach their fourth movie together, Breaking Dawn – Part 1, and with the first three movies (Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse) showing on Sky this November and December, we get the lowdown on what it’s like to be part of one of the most successful franchises ever…
Sky Movies Magazine: So, the third movie came out in cinemas earlier this year and you’re about to start shooting the fourth – did you ever expect Twilight to be such a big success?
Taylor Lautner: It was a big surprise. When we were filming Twilight we just thought we were making a movie that we were passionate about. We didn’t know if anybody else was going to want to watch it. We had no idea it was going to turn out like this and then it just kept growing and growing.
Robert Pattinson: I genuinely thought this was a dark little indie vampire love story… And then it just ended up being this massive thing. I didn’t see it coming at all… But it’s not like I objected to suddenly being in a big film! I mean, it’s great.
Kristen Stewart: What’s cool is that you have this fantasy full
of myths and stuff. So it does raise the emotional stakes. I think that’s why girls love it so much, because it’s just a little bit more serious than what you’re dealing with in real life. It’s just a little bit more passionate than whatever you’re feeling.
SMM: Have your lives changed a lot with all the press and fan attention?
TL: Yeah, a little bit, because it’s not normal to wake up and have 12 paparazzi cars waiting for you, who are just going to follow you all day…
KS: It’s really funny when they fall down all over each other because they’re running backwards to try and get your picture. Whenever you see me really happy in a paparazzi shot, it’s because I’m laughing at them.
TL: But the pros that come with the job highly outweigh the cons. I’ve been having the time of my life these past two years. But it’s very important to not let it affect your life. I really live in two different worlds. I have the Twilight world and then I have the same world that existed before, with my family and friends.
RP: I’m relatively fearful about when the series ends, because it’s such a great security blanket. It’s like a net. You can afford to make mistakes when you have another Twilight film to make. But after that, I guess you’re on your own.
SMM: You guys have worked together for a while now – how have your relationships changed?
KS: We have a completely different relationship now. We’ve become good friends… I care immensely about Rob and Taylor, we’ve really grown close – and it doesn’t get weird!
TL: Yeah, we’ve grown closer and closer. I mean, we’re like best friends now and it’s really amazing how much that helps. We’re able to be more open with each other and we have more fun. I think that creates a better working environment.
SMM: Do you ever annoy each other?
KS: They don’t annoy me [laughs]. We have totally normal relationships with each other… We can be honest and not be worried about offending each other.
TL: Kristen and I are super close [shoots a mock ‘challenging look’ at Pattinson]. We talk about anything and everything. During downtime we’ll either throw a football around or she’ll throw a grape and I’ll catch it in my mouth… You get really bored on set sometimes. I don’t know how we’d film this franchise if we weren’t as close as we are. It’d be a nightmare.
SMM: Taylor and Rob – your characters are rivals in the films. Is it difficult shooting the scenes, particularly in Eclipse, where you fight?
TL: Rob’s very funny. Like in the tent scenes where we’re yelling and screaming at each other – it’s so hard hating Rob because he’s just a fun, nice guy, so having to look him in the eye and scream at him is difficult. Every time after they called ‘cut’, we both just burst out laughing, so that’s pretty challenging.
RP: I was in a very strange mood when we were shooting that scene [laughs].
I kept getting obsessed with the word, ‘thoughts’, because with an American accent it sounds like ‘farts’. And I couldn’t get over it, the entire day. The opening line was, “Can you at least keep your thoughts to yourself?” I mean, I’m sitting in this tent and every single time [laughs]… And Taylor got to the point where he was just like, “That doesn’t even sound the same – it’s not funny at all.”
SMM: Does that happen a lot?
RP: [There was a scene] where Kristen was supposed to be asleep on the floor. So I looked down and she’s looking up and trying to make me laugh the entire time. But it meant the scene got some energy to it, because I was trying to stop myself laughing and that kind of made it easier.
SMM: Jacob and Bella come even nearer to getting it together in Eclipse – does that cause any weirdness between you?
TL: It was good for Jacob to get in there and get his shot and kiss Bella for the first time. Definitely [laughs].
RP: Not only do they do the kissing scenes, they never do it when I’m on set. You genuinely feel like someone’s cheating on you… I’d come back to work and be like, “So how was it?”
TL: [There was one kiss] at the climax of the movie. We’re on top of this mountain and the background was amazing. It’s a really important, emotional moment… But it was so funny because whenever Kristen and I would kiss, as soon as we’d finish, Kristen would look at me and go, “We just kissed.” I’d be like, “Yeah, we did.” It was funny.
SMM: Did you guys get embarrassed?
TL: No, when Kristen and I do scenes, we are Jacob and Bella. Everything we do, whether we’re kissing or fighting. We definitely live those characters so after three movies it kind of just happens now.
KS: Yeah, I could probably be certified absolutely insane at this point because
I’ve gotten so into the head space of Twilight’s reality…
SMM: Can you tell us a bit about the next installment, Breaking Dawn?
KS: Well, it’s now been split into two movies. We start filming in November…
TL: I’m really excited that it’s going to be two movies. I think that’s going to work really well and I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to work with Bill
Condon [the new director]. When I heard he was on board I was like, “OK, this is going to be golden.”
KS: I think each director has suited the projects perfectly. Catherine [Hardwicke, the director of the first movie] has a really strong connection to youth and discovery and stuff like that, and it’s really hard to describe how nice Chris [Weitz, the director of New Moon] is. He’s so compassionate and has a wisdom about him – I really needed someone to look up to and who was willing to go to the depths with me. David [Slade, the director of Eclipse] has more of a morbid sensibility. Which is good as Eclipse gets a little scarier…
SMM: How have your characters changed as the movies progress?
RP: When I first read the books, I was like… I can’t play this. This is impossible. But I’ve tried the entire time to make [Edward] the perfect underdog. No matter what anyone says to him, no matter what heroic deeds he does, it’s impossible to convince him that he’s done anything right. And the only thing that has made him feel alive – feel anything – is Bella.
TL: In New Moon, I was kind of playing a split personality; for the first half I was the old Jacob and then the second half, I was the new Jacob. For Eclipse, Jacob has matured and he’s a little more serious because he knows what he’s dealing with now, which was definitely emotionally challenging. That’s why Eclipse is my favourite movie, because everything that’s great about this franchise – the romance, the action, the danger, the suspense, everything – Eclipse takes to a whole other level. It’s the height of the love triangle – Bella is being torn between these two guys who are literally fighting for her.
KS: Well, in Breaking Dawn, Bella becomes a wife. She becomes a mother. Luckily I’ve played the character for a while. If Breaking Dawn was its own movie, it would be much more difficult to play such a young wife and mother, but because I have been with her since she was 17, it’s been a progression. I think that’s what’s so cool about the series. It takes her a long time to get to that point and she loses a lot and then gets it back. I think to make decisions like that you have to really know yourself and trust yourself and she achieves that. She’s very straight up and honest about everything and I’m excited because I know the guys so well and we’ve all taken this journey together.