He may be best known for his role in the Twilight series, but as a solo artist, actor, and director, Robert Pattinson packs a whole lot more than just vampire stories into his career. Here, we’ll take a look at some of the most interesting facts about the British actor.
Robert Pattinson was born on July 20, 1981 in London, England, though he grew up mostly in Scotland. His father, Andrew, worked for the BBC and his mother, Janette, was a homemaker. He has an older brother, Angus, and a younger sister, Vanessa. As a child, he developed an interest in acting and made his screen debut at the age of six, in a 1978 production of The Elephant Man. He later attended the same school as his Twilight co-star, Robert Pattinson. It was there that he began studying drama at the age of 11 and appeared in several more plays. In 1999, he graduated from high school and spent a year performing in nightclubs across Europe, before returning to London to pursue an acting career.
Pattinson made his screen debut in the British television series, Merlin, in the 1997 episode “The Hollow Tree”, though he didn’t land any major roles until the Twilight series. He played the adult version of Rob, the lead character’s son in Twilight and then returned for the sequels, Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009) and Twilight Saga: Eclipse (2010). In between films, he made several shorts for the British comedy series, Shameless, and played the role of the ukulele king, Shoenig, in the 2006 film, Into the Woods. However, it’s as Edward Cullen where he’s become a star, playing the sympathetic vampire opposite Kristen Stewart in the Twilight Saga.
In addition to acting, Pattinson has pursued a number of other interests, including fashion and music. He has been known to express an interest in designer brands and luxury goods, and is a self-confessed fan of musician and producer, Beck. He has also collaborated with Beck on a cover for the December 2009 issue of Rolling Stone magazine and designed a pair of shoes for Danish fashion house, Pedder. In 2006, Pattinson was named as one of the “Top 500 Celebrities in Luxury Brand Ownership” by luxury industry publication, Top Brand Z. The same year, he was also appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to drama. In 2007, he was made a Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government in recognition of his work with Beck. In 2008, he designed a watch for Jaeger-LeCoultre.
Pattinson also has a reputation for being a difficult person to work with, and has rarely given interviews. He has been quoted as saying that he does not like talking about himself in the third person and dislikes journalists who ask intrusive questions. In 2009, Rolling Stone put him at number eight on its list of “The Top 50 Most Influential Movie Stars of the Past 50 Years”. In 2005, Time Out magazine named him one of the “100 Most Influential People in the World Today”.