Walking down the streets of London today, you’d be hard pressed to find anyone who doesn’t know who Robert Pattinson is. The English actor has amassed a staggering amount of fame since first appearing in the Harry Potter films as Ron Weasley in 2007 – most recently playing the titular character in the latest installment of the Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. In the meantime, he’s appeared in countless other big-budget films that have helped him establish himself as one of Hollywood’s biggest stars.
But before he was famous, before he was even born, there were already rumors that he would play a legendary wizard in a future installment of the Harry Potter series. So what is it that makes this unlikely English actor so attractive to Hollywood? Why has he seemingly been born to play wizards and witches?
A Brief History Of Robert Pattinson
The son of Elizabeth Taylor and her actor husband, Richard Patterson, Robert Pattinson was born in London on October 19, 1978. He began acting at a young age, appearing alongside his siblings in TV commercials and music videos before landing his first major role at the age of 15 in the comedy film Local Hero. He then went on to graduate from Oxford University with a degree in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics in 2000, having also spent a year at Cambridge University as part of a program for gifted students.
Pattinson made his debut in the Harry Potter series as Ron Weasley, a role that would define his career. Since then, he’s appeared in a wide range of big-budget films, often playing a supporting role. Most notably, he played John Wick in the film adaptation of the iconic John Wick series. Wick was the first instance of Pattinson playing a character who possessed similar skillsets to those of the actor himself: a lethal combination of martial arts and marksmanship. Although his role as John Wick was not widely praised, it did earn him a Saturn Award nomination – as well as a dedicated following amongst fans of the horror series.
Born To Be A Wizard
Pattinson has repeatedly said that he was born with a “star” on his hand, which certainly seems to be the case. With his smooth looks, chiseled features, and magnetic charm, it’s no wonder why Hollywood has been quick to snatch him up for some of their biggest films. However, despite his obvious talent, it has taken him a while to truly break into the mainstream English-speaking film industry. The stigma surrounding film accents has mostly disappeared, which has made it easier for English-speaking actors to make the transition into movies. While the Harry Potter films helped him gain an international audience, it has been his breakthrough role as Wick that has put him on the map in Hollywood. According to one estimate, he has over 70 credits to his name, with a wide range of roles spanning from comic-book superheroes to real-life bandits.
The Mysterious Case Of Wick
Wick is a character who has seemingly been born to kill. Much like Harry Potter himself, Wick is a legendary figure, credited with creating an entire subculture within the world of fiction. In the comics, he’s even credited with inventing the hitman profession – and he’s about to invent a whole new form of assassination. So why is Wick such a draw for Hollywood?
Let’s take a closer look at the character.
Wick is an “immortal” hitman, credited with being the world’s greatest assassin. He possesses a distinctive appearance: tall, with blond hair and a full, bushy beard. He dresses entirely in black, favoring stylish leather trench coats and smart boutonnieres. He is a highly trained killer, skilled in hand-to-hand combat, martial arts, and marksmanship. He is partnered with a bloodhound named Rocket, and together, they form an unlikely but efficient killing duo.
But before Wick, there was a different sort of immortal, one who had been around for centuries, waiting for the right time to step into the spotlight. It was the character of Sherlock Holmes, who had been observed by one and all, and now, at last, his time had come. So it was that Rudolf Hess – deputy führer of Nazi Germany and longtime friend of Adolf Hitler – arrived at the Reichenbach Falls in order to “dye the color of destiny” and in the process shoot three of his bodyguards dead. The plan failed, and Hess was subsequently captured, much to the horror of Hitler and the rest of the Nazi party. After the war, Hess’s good friend Sherlock Holmes returned to England and resumed his role as a consulting detective, never disclosing his true identity nor taking on any other cases. While this had been an exciting case for amateur detectives online, it certainly hadn’t been the sort of thing that could hold up in court. Nonetheless, Hess’s dramatic return to England had set in motion a chain of events that would culminate in the founding of N.W.A.W.F. (The North West Avengers of the Sherlock Holmes Society), a covert organization which sought to protect freedom of speech by taking matters into their own hands, be that through economic intimidation or, if necessary, physical violence.
Wick’s Special Abilities
Wick is not your typical action movie character; he does not shoot first and ask questions later. Instead, he is a highly calculated killer who makes it a point to avoid any unnecessary risks. He begins each case by gathering as much information as possible, utilizing his exceptional intellect and photographic memory to piece together a complete profile of his target. He then chooses the perfect weapon, crafting an exact replica or leaving something akin to a calling card as a trail of evidence. Once he’s settled on a plan, he executes it with surgical precision and avoids being seen by the police or anyone else for that matter.
Wick’s Fashion Style
While we’re on the subject of fashion, let’s take a look at Wick’s impeccable style. Like many famous men in Hollywood, he favors classic men’s wear and sporty attire; this time around, however, he’s chosen a more fashionable look. In the comics, Wick often wears bold, colorful attire, opting for outrageous prints and unique combinations of textiles and leather. While he certainly doesn’t shy away from a good laugh, his fashion choices are certainly influenced by the often grim nature of his work. But even in his off-duty moments, Wick rarely leaves the house without a smile on his face. Why? It’s all in the detail, as they say. A close look at his outfits reveals that his clothing choices are often chosen for their artistic merit rather than their practicality.
The John Wick Effect
When it comes to reinventing the cinematic hitman genre, it is highly unlikely that anyone can come close to achieving what John Wick has. The world is fortunate enough to have more than one immortal hitman roaming the earth, and while we may have only seen Wick in action films and comic books, his influence can be felt far beyond the worlds of fiction and fantasy. The late Michael Madsen played a pivotal role in bringing Wick to life, and it was his acting talents, as well as his undeniable charisma, that made it possible.
However, even non-believers may be inclined to give Wick the benefit of the doubt. After all, who among us hasn’t dreamed of being a famous, rich, superstar – especially one who is famous for killing people? Wick’s cinematic existence seems to have been no dream. While our knowledge of him is limited to pop culture and the historical record, this unlikely Englishman has certainly made the most of his talents, and it seems that Hollywood is far from done with him, as his impending screen career suggests. In the meantime, the mystery surrounding his real identity continues to captivate fans and speculation continues to swirl. If anything, Wick has proven that even the most unlikely among us can achieve the impossible if they truly want it bad enough.