It’s easy to forget that Pattinson didn’t arrive at his extreme celebrity in increments – he was plunged in. Imagine what that’s like.
You’re a 15-year-old in south-west London, acting in the local theatre company because that’s where the cute girls hang out. Your mum’s a model booker, your dad sells vintage cars, and you’d like to be a singer, deep down, so you do so in a band called Bad Girls. Even after you score a part in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005), you’re still not sold on acting. Maybe political speechwriting is more your thing? But your agent persuades you to go to LA to read for some romcom called Post Grad (2009), so you go and stay at her house, try for the part, and when you don’t get it, you’re crushed. You’re 21 and it feels like your career is over already.
When your agent brings up this other audition, you say fine, whatever, no one else is hiring you. It’s some vampire movie and the director has already seen 5,000 boys. Also: you’re too old. But who knows, maybe it’ll be like the director’s other movie, Thirteen, which was a pretty cool indie. And that was it – last chance saloon one minute, Bieber fever the next.You stayed more or less the same, but the world around you changed forever.
“I remember when it happened,” he says. “I was going to clubs in LA and you had to call the promoters ahead of time to get on the guest list. But one time I forgot to call, and I was on the list anyway. That’s when I knew. I showed up with mustard down my T-shirt and they’re like giving me the wink, ‘Yeah, man, you’re on the list.’”