The first time I met Robert Pattinson, a few months shy of the release of Twilight in 2008, he strolled into the lobby of the Beverly Hills hotel completely unnoticed. No one had the slightest notion that his character, the charismatic vampire Edward Cullen, would soon prevent him from sustaining any kind of normality come the release of the film. He said back then, "I still haven't decided if acting is going to be my career. I don't know if it's going to work out. Who knows if people will go and see this movie?"'
As we know, this would turn out to be an understatement of epic proportions. This afternoon, three years later, we're in the same hotel but with a few changes to the scenery. Two burly bodyguards stand protectively outside his door, a couple of hundred paparazzi wait in the street and a horde of teenage girls are ready to stampede.
Life hasn't turned out the way Pattinson expected. Reminding him of what he said previously, he laughs. "You know, seriously, I just never thought I'd have that kind of effect on anyone and I still don't really understand it."
He admits to mixed feelings about saying goodbye to Edward Cullen.
"I'll be very glad not to put those contacts in anymore or have to put on the sparkling makeup, but I will really miss the character. I do love the guy. I feel like I know him pretty well now."
Much ado has been made of his Twilight co-star, Kristen Stewart, and the nature of their offscreen relationship. Both have remained tight-lipped on the subject and have never made any public declarations, although there are numerous photographs, shot all over the world, documenting their romance.
In Breaking Dawn, their characters Edward and Bella marry and have a child. One of the most pivotal scenes is the birth of the couple's baby and turning Bella into a vampire.
"It was insane, intense," he says of the scene, explaining that Edward can either lose Bella or give her a bite and thus immortality. "It was a pretty traumatic scene for me to do as an actor and, frankly, horrible for me emotionally. Edward has tried for so long not to turn Bella into a vampire and now ... well, it's very sad. He feels like he has let her down."
Read more here. Rob talks about his dog Bear, Water for Elephants, his music, and fame.