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It’s no secret that the first movie in The Twilight Saga looks completely different from its four sequels. Because Summit Entertainment didn’t expect the film to perform as well as it did, it was given a much more conservative budget than its successors. This gives the film a distinctly indie feel in comparison to the others. Furthermore, fans couldn’t help but notice that some things about the first film simply feel off. Perhaps the best example of this is the way The Cullens looked in Twilight.

Twilight cast members who portray The Cullens: Liz Reaser, Jackson Rathbone, Nikki Reed, and Kellan Lutz pose for a photo
Liz Reaser, Jackson Rathbone, Nikki Reed, and Kellan Lutz | Nick Rood/Young Hollywood/Getty Images

Since The Cullens are members of the undead, it makes sense that they look different from humans. However, many fans of the Twilight movies will agree that they looked overly odd in the first film, especially in comparison to their appearances in New Moon, Eclipse, Breaking Dawn – Part 1, and Breaking Dawn – Part 2. Everything from hairstyles, to complexions, to hair color seemed distinctly off. But what was the reason for this?

Why do The Cullens look so bad in the first ‘Twilight’ movie?

Back in 2009, Nikki Reed (who portrayed Rosalie Hale in the Twilight movies) spoke to MTV ahead of filming New Moon. The Thirteen actor revealed that she didn’t feel that the first movie really nailed the Cullens appearance-wise because of hair and makeup issues and weather conditions. In fact, she made a point to talk to Chris Weitz, who directed the second film, about how the family of vampires looked on camera.

“[My conversation Chris] was revolving around the look of the Cullens; I don’t know if we necessarily got it right the first time around,” Reed shared about filming Twilight. “We weren’t expecting all the weather issues and all the makeup we had to put on. Every single character. I know a lot of people think it was just me that changed how I looked physically, but Peter Facinelli (Carlisle Cullen) has black hair, and he has to go back blond. And Kellan Lutz (Emmett Cullen), who is a natural blond, has to go back to dark hair.”

Nikki Reed cites makeup issues and weather conditions for the vampires’ bizarre appearances

Continuing on, Reed explained why it was so difficult to make the Cullens look the way they were supposed to in Twilight. “We all had hours of hair and makeup in the morning, and then when we showed up on set, it was raining,” the actor revealed. “And because we are vampires, we can’t shoot in the sun! So, we were always shooting when it was cloudy, and then there was hail, and the makeup was pouring off. It was an experimental process — now, I think, we are more prepared.”


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Reed also shared that she was looking forward to the extreme makeover that The Cullens would receive prior to New Moon. “The goal is for something better, just better, all-around better,” she revealed. “I think we are always striving to better ourselves.” We think that fans of Twilight would agree that the makeover that The Cullens received after the first movie was much needed. At least, fans finally have an answer to why the coven looked so bizarre in the first film.