Saturday, August 20, 2011

Remember When? Casting Twilight Saga

Do you remember (or did you know) that people were not entirely happy with Kristen Stewart as Bella Swan? There was OUTRAGE over casting Robert Pattinson as Edward... fans had much to say (as they do now about Hunger Games) and Twilight Lexicon relfects on the journey.

Twilight Lexicon wrote an awesome article on the casting of the Twilight Saga Movies and fans reactions to the casting as it occured over the past few years!

For Bella Swan, fans debated over Emily Browning, Alexis Bledel, and Danielle Panabaker as front runners. Fan wanted a true brunette with a small frame and a kind of innocence to her. (Keep in mind that the casting for the film happened before Breaking Dawn was published!) When Kristen Stewart landed the role, the feeling we got at the time from the fandom was that fans weren’t completely thrilled, but they were at least happy that Bella wasn’t being played by a Disney-esque actress and that the film was at least being made.

As fans waited casting of Edward Cullen Stephenie Meyer wrote:

For anyone who’s visited my site, this is not really news. After reading through your comments, though, I felt the need to reiterate a few things:
1) I did not choose Kristen Stewart to play Bella. Summit films choose her. I’m happy with their choice, but it was never up to me.
2) Similarly, I have no choice in the matter of who will play Edward, Alice, or any of the other characters. I have made suggestions, but no one at Summit is obligated to listen to my suggestions. They’re nice enough to let me bug them, but even that is more than I contractually have the right to expect.
3) Begging me to choose a good Edward is a waste of your typing time.
But since we’re on the subject of Edward, I’d like to give you all a little advice (the same advice I’m giving myself). To my knowledge, no one has been cast for the role yet, but here are some things for us to repeat to ourselves daily as we wait for the news:
1) Do not expect the actor who plays Edward to fit your preconceived notions of the character. No one is that perfect; that’s why he’s fictional.
2) DO expect that the actor won’t “look like Edward” to you. Try to be open-minded about that. Headshots lack the magic of makeup and lighting; they aren’t going to convey what the actor might look like on the set.
3) Do not expect a name you’re familiar with; do not expect the guy in your lexicon banner (who is probably too old, not a good enough actor, or not interested anyway).
4) No human actor is pretty enough to really pull off a vampire. What we are hoping for here is that magical element of screen charisma that makes all the difference in the world. Example: Pirates of the Carribean. Were you drooling over pretty Orlando? I wasn’t. I was taken with the drunk pirate in the eyeliner. Some actors can own any scene they’re in. Let’s not focus so much on the perfect face (which no one is going to be happy with regardless); let’s hope for an inebriated pirate. I.e. someone who can own a scene like Johnny or Joaquin or Jonathan Rhys, someone who will make us forget he’s not quite pretty enough to be a vampire.

Here’s my wish: that, after we find out who is going to play Edward, my comments page is not awash with “I can’t believe they picked HIM!”-s and “John Doe is the real Edward and no one else can do it!”-s and “I hate him! I want him to die!”-s. Can we give him a chance to become Edward? Can we let him try to convince us? I’m keeping my mind open. I hope I can keep my comments page open, too

Finally the news came...

The date was Dec. 11, 2007. And this was how we posted the news that day: “Summit Entertainment announced that Robert Pattinson, an actor from the UK, has been cast as Edward Cullen.”

And the world went crazy.

Twilight Lexicon goes on to discuss just WHAT the reaction was, and it was not very positive! People did NOT like Robert Pattinson as their precious Edward. Catherine Hardwicke told me once that she had to convince the studio that she could MAKE Robert Pretty enough for fans (starting with hair extensions that he hated ha ha)

Lexicon wrote a fantastic article reflecting on casting over the movies and fan reactions. It really made me think of how we are acting with Hunger Games. Read more at Twilight Lexicon

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