‘Twilight’ Author Stephenie Meyer Wanted a DC Superhero to Play Edward Cullen Instead of Robert Pattinson
The Twilight saga is unquestionably one of the most popular movie franchises in history, earning over $2.5 billion at the box office and catapulting the cast into superstars. Twilight has such a following that Taylor Swift reportedly made a serious attempt to land a role in one of the movies.
Today it’s near-impossible to imagine anyone else in the main Twilight roles, but during casting back in 2008, that nearly happened. According to Teen Vogue, Twilight author Stephenie Meyer initially envisioned an entirely different cast. In particular, she had someone in mind to play Edward Cullen who’s nothing like Robert Pattinson.
The world of ‘Twilight’
The Twilight films are based on Meyer’s four novels and set in an otherworldly — yet eerily realistic — realm where humans co-exist alongside vampires and werewolves. Storylines throughout all five movies primarily follow Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), a vampire; Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart), a human; and Jacob Black (Taylor Lautner), a werewolf.
Bella and Jacob are best friends, but Bella falls in love with Edward and Jacob is in love with Bella. Since vampires and werewolves are natural enemies, this leads to a number of conflicts. Each of the movies has a different central focus, but all of them involve the love triangle, vampires vs. humans vs. werewolves, Bella’s desire to become a vampire, and Edward constantly trying to protect her.
Edward is a telepathic teenage vampire who’s a member of the “vegetarian” Cullen family. While most vampires eat human blood, the Cullens eat only wild animals, which allows them to live peacefully among humans without detection.
Physically, Edward is extremely attractive and Bella frequently likens his appearance to the Greek god Adonis, according to the Twilight wiki on Fandom. He’s a tortured soul, brooding, protective, and hopelessly romantic all in one.
Edward is also incredibly smart and well-educated, and he plays the piano and speaks multiple languages. Once he falls for Bella, Edward’s life centers around protecting her from anything he deems a threat.
Before Twilight, Pattinson was a largely unknown teen actor, despite having had a role in 2005’s Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Is anyone else noticing that Pattinson seems to have an affinity for majorly successful movie franchises?
Despite not having much in the way of acting chops prior to playing Edward, the role was seemingly written just for Pattinson — he was just so perfectly vampiric. In real life, Pattinson, like Edward, is also an accomplished musician. According to Insider, he sings, writes music, and plays the piano and guitar. Two of his original songs even appeared on the Twilight soundtrack.
Pattinson shares many qualities with Edward, so it’s a bit hard to believe he almost didn’t get the role. Next up, Pattinson has another starring role, this time as Batman in 2021’s The Batman. Ironically, the actor who Meyer originally wanted as Edward is most well-known for playing Superman. Batman v Superman, anyone?
Henry Cavill nearly played Edward
Henry Cavill is best known for playing Superman in a number of DC Extended Universe (DCEU) films. In the several years before 2013’s Man of Steel, Cavill had dozens of smaller roles in TV shows and movies, and he evidently caught Meyer’s attention with his chiseled features.
ScreenRant reports that Meyer “had a clear vision of how she wanted Edward Cullen to look, and her perfect actor for it was Henry Cavill.” Meyer reportedly wanted Cavill in the movie so badly that she proposed he play Carlisle, Edward’s adoptive father, once she realized he was too old to play a teenager.
Interestingly, Cavill was never officially approached for either role. Perhaps because he was working on the popular Showtime series The Tudors at the time, or perhaps the movie’s developmental delays really did make it so that Cavill was too old, even to play the ageless Carlisle.
Cavill’s career has been more than just fine, though. He’ll appear as Sherlock Holmes in Enola Holmes later in 2020, and he’ll star as Superman once again in Zack Snyder’s Justice League in 2021. Sometimes, things really do work out for the best.