Capone Attempts to Steal Bella Away from Edward!! TWILIGHT's Kristen Stewart and Director Catherine Hardwicke!!
Published at: Nov. 18, 2008, 11:25 p.m. CST by Capone
Hey everyone. Capone in San Diego with my brief interview with TWILIGHT's Bella, the sweet and shy Kristen Stewart, who I've been impressed with back to her time as Jodie Foster's child in PANIC ROOM. She followed that film with roles in such works as UNDERTOW, ZATHURA, THE MESSENGERS, IN THE LAND OF WOMEN, INTO THE WILD, and a strange cameo in JUMPER earlier this year. But it's in the coveted role of TWILIGHT's Bella, the young woman who falls in love with a vampire, that will undoubtedly propel her into a new level of fame and demand in film. I caught up with the diminutive 18-year-old actress shortly after a riotous Comic-Con panel for the film. When I spoke with her, it was in the middle of a chaotic gathering of the filmmaking team and a gang of reporters. I think my one-on-one interview fell between a quick shot on MTV and another for G4. Hope this gives you some sense of the woman and the film.
Capone: That was an unbelievable response the crowd gave you guys. Have you ever been to this event before?
Kristen Stewart: No.
Capone: I've been told it's not usually like that.
Capone: I'm guessing the boxers or briefs question doesn't come up at every Comic-Con panel.
Capone: What's your response the that, because you all looked a little shell shocked up there.
KS: Right. It's completely surreal. I'm sure everyone would say the same thing. Most people don't have to get up in front of thousands of people and get asked questions. The other thing is, you don't know ever what they're going to ask, but the fans of this book happen to be really respectful and nice, and they're my age. Once I got out there, I was much less intimidated.
Capone: You said you weren't familiar with the novel before Catherine Hardwicke contacted you about doing the movie and sent you the script. When you finally read it, what was it about the story and the character that made you say 'This is something I have to do.'?
KS: The love story. I know it's really simple and really basic, but I think that's what pushes humans to got to crazy limits, it's for love. If somebody ever dies for somebody, it's because they love them. And for me, this was the most epic love story and I wanted to give it a shot.
Capone: What do you think it is about the vampire mythology in film and literature that makes writers and filmmakers constantly return to it as a subject?
KS: I don't know. There are a lot of interesting themes, like immortality. What I like about it in TWILIGHT is the struggle for power, at least between my character and Edward. The dynamic is that she will give herself completely to him; she's subjecting herself to anything, and that is the most powerful thing that you can do, to give yourself over to someone rather than standing up over somebody. That push-and-pull dynamic, that I can't get to close but I have to. It's forbidden fruit. If you can't have it, you're going to want it 10 times more. Plus vampires are hot! [laughs]. [She delivers this last statement as if imitating some of the questions from the panel.]
Capone: That's pretty clear from today's panel. Thanks you so much.
Next up the the wonderful director Catherine Hardwicke. If there's anything about TWILIGHT I have complete and utter faith in, it's that Hardwicke is absolutely the right director for this material. She made the move from being a celebrated production designer to director with her controversial 2003 work THIRTEEN and followed that up with LORDS OF DOGTOWN. Anyone who knows Heath Ledgers career, knows that before DARK KNIGHT, his best and wildest performance was in DOGTOWN. In 2006, she released the probably ill-advised but still compelling NATIVITY STORY, and she's perhaps the best director working today who understands how hormonally charged young people think and act. My reason for even entering into the TWILIGHT insanity was to talk to her, and I told her as much. Enjoy…
Capone: Hi, Catherine. How are you?
Catherine Hardwicke: Hey, how are you doing?
Capone: Good. I'll confess to you right up front that the real reason I'm at this at all is because I love your movies.
CH: That is so cool. Thanks.
[At this point, she nudges me away from a particularly crowded and noisy part of the balcony where we're standing so we can actually hear each other.]
Capone: When you adapt something that's this popular, you have more than just the responsibility of making a good movie. You have to draw in the un-indoctrinated, you have to be as faithful to the book as you can, but also make it visually interesting movie. I'm guessing you haven't dealt with some of the elements before.
CH: You're absolutely right, and that was the great challenge because the book is 500 pages, and you really get inside Bella's head and her point of view. But we had the opportunity--because a picture tells a thousand words--of clearing 10 pages with a single scene. And we've got to do this in 90 or 105 minutes, so you have ask, 'What is the essence? What scenes do you love that have to be in there? How long do those take, and what else can I fit in?' But also, some stuff that's in Bella's head, I wanted to make it visual and take you out and feel the power of Edward and what he can do. When he says, 'You should be scared of me," I want you to feel that, an adrenaline rush in your bones. Did you get to see that scene today?
Capone: Yes, I was in there.
CH: So some of that stuff in the book is barely mentioned, and it's just through her eyes, but we actually got to do the scene. That was cool.
Capone: Did you ever think that you'd be part of a cultural phenomenon. Your name will forever be identified with this universe.
CH: I know, it's wild. I was kind of innocent. I read the script and I read the book, and I thought 'This is really cool. I'd love to do it.' But even since I first looking into it last January, in the last year and a half, it's gotten way bigger.
Capone: I know a lot of vampire loyalists--and I realize this goes for any movie or book that deals with vampires--but they were mad at Stephenie Meyers for changing the rules about vampires.
CH: Everybody writers their own. Stephenie made her own rules and her own world.
Capone: I asked Kristen this too, but why do you think people keep returning to the vampire world in art? It's not like it gets revisited every 20 years; some new wave comes in every year or so.
CH: It's constant. It's because they're the sexiest of all the creatures. Zombies are not sexy. Gross. Mummies are disgusting. Vampires are seductive, eternally beautiful. They bite your neck and other erogenous zones. I mean, come on. Yes! [laughs] Who wouldn't want to be bitten by a vampire? A hot chick or guy, right? I think that's it. They're just seductive. You can stay 17 and gorgeous, and you can seduce anybody.
Capone: With a film like this, casting is so important. And fans seem to rally against some of your choices initially, but clearly from today's reaction to Robert Pattinson, you've got the right guy for Edward.
CH: Oh my god, the decibel levels were off the scale. I didn't even know what half the questions were. I didn't know what I was saying or anybody else was saying. I think that's Stephenie's book inspired a lot of passion, and women of all ages are falling in love with Edward. I know guys who are doing their hair like him. I know guys who are like, 'Hey, I'm going to take a couple of tips from this guy. And the fact that Rob embodies that on screen. He's got the chiseled jaw, he's got that intensity that he can turn on.
Capone: Quite a few chiseled jaws on stage today.
CH: Oh my god, our whole cast is beautiful. Cam [Gigandet, who plays James] is drop-dead gorgeous. All the guys are ridiculously good looking. And the girls too. Kristen is like that old-time beautiful movie star. When you see her on the screen, you're like 'Wow!'
[At this point a publicist whisked Catherine away to her next interview.]
Capone: Well, thanks for talking. Good luck with this. You're clearly going to need it.
CH: Yeah, people don't seem that into this movie. I don't know why. I heard TWILIGHT is going to be good. [laughs]