‘Twilight’: Why Robert Pattinson ‘Fought’ for Limited Screen Time in ‘New Moon’

When Robert Pattinson first signed on to play Edward Cullen in Twilight, he had no idea about the fame and fortune that the franchise would bring him. Having starred in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire three years prior, Pattinson was hellbent on doing small indie films that “no one would see” before he did another blockbuster. But Pattinson had no clue how massive the Twilight fan base was until he’d finished filming the first movie and he was doing promotion for it.

Twilight stars Taylor Lautner, Kristen Stewart, and Robert Pattinson
Taylor Lautner, Kristen Stewart, and Robert Pattinson | Popow/ullstein bild via Getty Images

Once Pattinson realized just how intense the Twilight fandom was, he began to feel the pressure of living up to fans’ expectations. This was particularly true when filming the second film in the franchise, New Moon. Fans will recall that Pattinson’s character doesn’t appear very much in the film in comparison to the other four movies. Since Edward breaks things off with Bella, fearing for her safety, for the bulk of the film, we only see Edward as a figment of Bella’s imagination.

Robert Pattinson fought hard to have limited scenes in ‘New Moon’

In an interview with Collider, Pattinson revealed that getting the apparitions right was a tricky thing for him to do, though he did ask his fellow co-star, Kristen Stewart, for her input. Since Pattinson’s character wasn’t present in the books, he worried that his scenes in the film would be random and have little meaning. “Before we started shooting people were asking questions, like, ‘Do you think people are going to be worried about not having enough Edward in it?'”the Twilight star revealed. “He’s not in the book. I was so worried that it was just going to be random scenes.”

RELATED: ‘Twilight’: Robert Pattinson Shared the Secret To His Chemistry With Kristen Stewart in the Movie

Pattinson revealed that there were talks about adding in additional scenes that weren’t in the book. However, he fought against more screentime because he felt that too many extra scenes wouldn’t be true to the overarching story. “There was talk at the beginning of showing his back story in South America, going around moping or something,” the Twilight alum confessed. “That would’ve been terrifying for me and I think that it would’ve been catastrophic for the film as well. But I fought as hard as I could to keep it as limited as possible, mainly because it just doesn’t happen in the book.”

The ‘Twilight’ star shared that filming his apparition scenes was tricky

But fighting for less screen time certainly had its challenges. Pattinson confessed that playing an illusion in Bella’s mind was difficult because it could so easily look ridiculous or hokey. To combat this, the Twilight star did his best to play the scene with as much truth as possible even though he was only a part of Bella’s psyche.

“But then at the same time, it’s scary just to do voice over because it could well end up being very cheesy,” Pattinson stated. “I guess there’s a kind of medium. Also, it was interesting because you’re not just there. You’re supposed to be playing something, whether I achieved it or not. You’re just playing a vision and if you play it as realistically as possible it becomes an interesting thing to try and figure out. So it was interesting for me at the time.” Pattinson certainly seemed to achieve his goal according to Twilight fans. If you’re interested in revisiting his work, New Moon and all of the other Twilight movies are currently streaming on Hulu.