Welcome back, Twilight fans, for part two of my interview with Rob Pattinson, who plays dreamboat vampire Edward Cullen in the upcoming film adaptation of the popular book. Several of you noticed in the first part of my interview that his answers about the movie and his character were perceptive and articulate. Indeed, I found him to be extremely thoughtful and level-headed, considering he's at the center of such a major project.
Did I mention that his accent is so charming it borders on dangerous? Um, anyway, on with the interview:
You’ve done fantasy before. Do you think it’s important to keep these characters grounded in reality?
Yeah, definitely. I definitely tried to humanize every element of being a vampire. I mean, luckily, Stephenie [Meyer] didn't have vampire lore in the book. It's very specific, and the characters in the book even kind of joke about the mythology about vampires, and so you can kind of get another element of realism there. And Edward, you know, there are scenes in the film and obviously in the book where he's breaking down the kind of all-out clichés to Bella and says, like, "No, I know about all these kind of fictional things and they don't do this and they don't do that. This is what it is, it's simple, I have this problem, and there’s nothing else really to it." It’s just a monkey on your back. So yeah, I think it's important to keep it grounded. I think it also makes it more frightening, and that’s what I liked about Catherine [Hardwicke] directing it, because I went into it thinking it's going to be shot with this kind of realism and grittiness, and I thought that could work for this story. I mean, it's trying to reinvent the vampire genre a bit.
Lots more after the jump, including a bit about his vampire sparkle, so
One of the big vampire myths the Twilight universe debunks is this idea that vampires can't go out in the daylight. Edward and his fellow vampires actually can go out in the sun — it's just that they sparkle. Did you guys shoot the scene where Edward reveals this side of being a vampire to Bella in the field? Do we get to see you sparkle?
It is. I haven't seen it yet — I never watch my own movies, so I don't know what it’s going to be like. In fact, I did the press junket [last week] and apparently they said it looked quite good . . . I know they were having a ton of trouble trying to make it not look like My Little Pony.
Compared to the books, would you say the movie's more violent or action-packed?
It's definitely not an action film, but it's — when you read the end of Twilight, it definitely has a pulse. It’s not just an essay, it is kind of gripping, which is why I think people get kind of addicted to [the books]. But I mean, the pace definitely changes in the end, and when I read the script, the script was a lot faster-paced than the book. The whole point of the book is a very lingering. . . you know the big fight at the end? You see the fight and stuff like that. They’re really, though, the same tone — I mean, people who read the book [and who saw the movie] whom I’ve talked to in the last two days said it's exactly the same tone, so that's good.
From your perspective, what is the appeal of vampires right now, anyway?
I’m not entirely sure, because I was never really a vampire fan. I mean, I don't have anything against vampires [laughs]. I think in Twilight, it's something to do with having this sort of protector character who can't reveal to anyone else and has this whole commitment to Bella, which is why a lot of girls like it. But I think also it is that kind of attraction of having this incredibly powerful being. It’s the perfect template, vampires, for having any kind of mysterious creature. Every single stereotype — that they can only come out at night, they have a dark secret you can only find out if you die — it's all to do with being seduced. It's not really to do with brute force. Plus, there aren’t that many supernatural things that are attractive. You can’t really have, like, a sexy zombie.
Any thoughts on Team Edward vs. Team Jacob yet?
[Laughs] Not really. I haven’t really . . . I don’t know. My agent started wearing a Team Edward badge.
This is a huge role that you're launching into. Do you have any fear about only being seen as Edward forever more?
I haven’t so far. I've been so involved in the whole Twilight thing I haven’t really had the chance to separate that. I guess I'll have a very different perspective when the movie comes out — we'll see how it does. I mean it's definitely changed my career a lot. People take me more seriously, I guess, in the industry. I'm not particularly worried. Maybe I will be when I haven't got a job for five years!