Twilight was Kristen Stewart’s big break, but she wasn’t the only one on the list to play Bella Swan. Here’s who could have played the role.
The Twilight Saga was a big boost for Kristen Stewart’s career, but she wasn’t the only one considered to play Bella Swan. Back in 2005, Stephenie Meyer introduced readers to a world where humans, werewolves, and a very special type of vampires coexist in Twilight, the first book in what would become a successful series of four novels. It didn’t take long for the Twilight books to make the jump to the big screen, and the first film was released in 2008.
Directed by Catherine Hardwicke (Thirteen), Twilight was an even bigger success than the novels, even if it received mixed reactions. Twilight made it possible for the rest of the novels – New Moon, Eclipse, and Breaking Dawn – to get their own films, with the final one being split into two. As Twilight already had a big and passionate fanbase, they followed the casting process quite closely, and at first weren’t quite welcoming with some of the decisions.
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For example, Robert Pattinson got a lot of hate when he was cast as Edward Cullen, but fans eventually accepted it and are now very supportive of everything he does. Conversely, Kristen Stewart’s casting was better received, but she wasn’t the only actress on the list to play Bella Swan.
Twilight: Lily Collins Almost Played Bella Swan
Kristen Stewart wasn’t a newcomer when she was cast as Bella Swan, having being part of films like Panic Room and The Messengers, but Twilight was her big break. Before she was cast, there were other actresses in consideration for the role – some were newcomers who could have benefited from it, and others weren’t new in the film industry. Lily Collins could have played Bella Swan, making it her first film role, which ended up being that of Collins Tuohy in The Blind Side. Jennifer Lawrence was also in consideration for the role of Bella Swan, but not getting the part didn’t really affect her career, as she was part of three films in 2008: Garden Party, The Poker House, and The Burning Pain.
Michelle Trachtenberg was also one of the options to play Bella Swan, and she was no newbie in the entertainment industry. Trachtenberg played Dawn Summers in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and starred in Harriet the Spy in 1996. She also had roles in Inspector Gadget, Ice Princess, and the 2006 remake of Black Christmas. Another name on the list was Sara Paxton, who’s film debut came in the 1990s, but might be best remembered for her role in Aquamarine, where she played a mermaid. Kristen Stewart came to the attention of Hardwicke after visiting the set of Adventureland, where she had an informal screen test. Twilight radically changed her life and career, and even though it wasn’t an easy ride for her and Pattinson, it played a big role in shaping her career.
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