The ‘Twilight’ stars have been romantically linked since 2008, and co-stars on the big screen since 2010. The couple have faced much media scrutiny and criticism over the years due to their lavish lifestyle and public spats, which intensified when their relationship became more public in 2014.

Since then, the ‘Twilight’ and ‘Vampire Diaries’ actress has been accused of plagiarism, and leaked naked and paparazzi photos have resurfaced. In November 2019, Stewart filed for legal separation from Pattinson, citing irreconcilable differences. In the docs, she alleges the “irreconcilable differences” between the two are due to his “abusiveness and self-absorption.”

Here, we’ll explore the evolution of the couple’s relationship. We’ll also take a look at some of the challenges and controversies they’ve faced together.

From Friends To More Than Friends

It all started when Stewart was 24 and appeared alongside Pattinson in the ‘Twilight’ movie. The pair had previously worked together on the 2007 movie ‘Death Defying Acts’, which also starred Naomi Watts. The pair were introduced by their mutual agent, who saw promise in their on-screen chemistry.

“There is a very distinct sense of ‘Twilight’ in their personalities,” the agent told reporters at the time. “It’s similar to the ‘Twilight’ books in that it’s got this wonderful fantasy undertone to it. It’s a bit like ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ meets ‘Lost’.”

From the start, Stewart and Pattinson portrayed an unlikely pair of lovers whose relationship was fueled by an unceasing desire for approval and admiration. In the years that followed, Stewart became more involved in the couple’s life, and their on-screen chemistry only intensified. The couple were photographed leaving each other’s arms for the very first time in 2010, and their on-screen chemistry was hailed by fans and critics alike.

While ‘Twilight’ was a major turning point in Stewart’s acting career, it was also a platform for her to meet influential figures in Hollywood and beyond. Thanks in part to her growing celebrity, the 24-year-old is now routinely linked to high profile men, many of whom she has never even spoken with.

The Early Stages Of The Partnership

Even before their professional relationship was officially over, critics had begun to question whether or not Stewart and Pattinson would ever work together outside of the cinema. In 2010, Stewart and Pattinson were photographed leaving a London restaurant together, fueling rumours that their professional relationship was over. It was later revealed that the pair had actually spent the day filming a scene for the new movie ‘The Rover’.

Despite the rumours, Stewart and Pattinson remained close and in 2014, they renewed their vows at an intimate private ceremony in Venice. Their choice of wedding venue was no coincidence; the ceremony was held on the Bridge of Sighs, a 12th-century walkway that connects the Grand Canal with the Hotel Ca’ Dolcettio in Dorsoduro. Guests at the wedding included actor Richard Madden, director Michael B. Gordon, and producer Dede Gardner.

Gordon told Entertainment Tonight at the time that the pair had chosen the venue “because it was such an iconic location for wedding pictures” and that Stewart had wanted to “keep the Venice feel in the ceremony.” The ceremony was also beamed live on social media platforms such as Instagram.

A year later, in January 2015, Stewart and Pattinson were photographed leaving their home in London together. While some suspected the outing was a planned publicity stunt, sources confirmed to Variety that the pair were, in fact, traveling to Paris for a vacation. At the time, Stewart hinted that their on-going collaboration was more than just professional, telling The New York Times, “This is going to be our new life. We’re just starting to have a really good time together.”

The Rise Of The Mature Woman

In 2016, Stewart took a step forward, choosing to wear a romantical gown for the 2016 Grammys. The choice was surprising, as she had previously shied away from such bold fashion choices. The actress wore a revealing white dress with a skirt that swept the floor, as she accepted her award for Album of the Year for her self-titled record. She thanked her female fans and spoke about the empowering aspects of her music, drawing a contrast between her private life and the highly public nature of her career.

The following year, Stewart released ‘Lovers’, a song-and-dance musical about a couple’s tumultuous relationship. The song was co-written by Stewart and Justin Parker, with Parker contributing vocals. ‘Lovers’ was praised by critics for its authentic portrayal of an older, more mature woman falling in love for the first time. Entertainment Weekly wrote, “If there’s one thing ‘Cancel’ may not be able to do for us, it’s to make us feel like we’re watching a movie about a couple of kids in love.” The review went on to praise the song’s “sassy swagger,” as well as Stewart and Parker’s “biting sarcasm.”

The pair had previously collaborated on an anti-Trump protest song, titled “Daddy,” as well as “Forgotten Love,” a duet with rapper Kanye West. In the past, Stewart had described herself as a “little bit of a political person,” adding that she would often “troll” on social media about issues she believed in. It was rumoured that Stewart was considering a run for public office, but in the end, she decided against it.

Legal Trouble For Twitchers

In the fall of 2016, Stewart sparked a brief ‘paparazzi frenzy’ when she was caught on camera kissing her ‘Game of Thrones’ co-star, Sergii Linger. The on-set kiss, which was nothing more than a passionate greeting between the two actors, briefly generated headlines around the world. Amidst the commotion, Linger was more concerned about Stewart’s rumored alcoholism than he was about his on-screen kiss with the actress. (The two have since worked together on the upcoming ‘Twilight’ movie ‘Eclipse’.)

For her part, Stewart maintained that the kiss was “no big deal,” and even jokingly referred to the whole incident as a “wardrobe malfunction.”

As previously mentioned, the couple have frequently been plagued by scandal and controversy, with many of their missteps being publicized. In 2017, the spotlight fell on Stewart when it was reported that she had plagiarized parts of a speech at a TedX event. Her ‘Saturday Night Live’ costar, Bill Hader, claimed that the actress “copied almost word for word” a speech he had given at some point in the past, and which he had also posted on his social media accounts.

The allegation was quickly followed by another one. A few months later, it was revealed that Stewart had lifted lines from a novel written by English professor Adam Ferris. The couple swiftly issued a statement, saying that they were “mortified” by what had happened and that they had already contacted Ferris to “make sure he is aware of the lapse in judgment and will forgive us.”

Stewart did not respond to multiple requests for comment from The New York Times at the time.

Sharing Is Caring

In August 2018, Stewart made headlines for the wrong reasons when it was revealed that she had been the victim of a sex scam. The celebrity hacker, George Nader, claimed to have access to the accounts of over 100 celebrities, including Stewart, and that he would often “spoof” texts sent to these individuals in the name of a fictional doctor. Nader would then blackmail the celebrities, demanding money in exchange for not releasing intimate photos of the victims.

A representative for Stewart denied that she was a victim of Nader’s scheme, but a leaked police report revealed that Nader had made threats against Stewart and others, demanding a ransom of $500,000, since 2014. Nader was sentenced to eight years in prison in late October of that year.