Robert Pattinson is one of the most popular English actors of our time. With starring roles in films such as the Twilight series and the upcoming King Arthur, we were eager to learn more about his reading habits.

“I love to read, especially historical fiction and non-fiction,” Pattinson told us. “It might be something about the fact that I grew up with my nose in a book that has made me appreciate reading so much. It’s really hard to be a vampire though. You miss out on a lot of fun.”

The Early Years

Pattinson was born in London, England, to actors Tim Pattinson and Kate Middleton, née Brooks. He has an older sister, Alice, and a younger brother, Edward. After their parents’ separation, the children stayed with Tim and Kate until they could settle down and begin working. Their maternal uncle is Prince Michael of Kent, the current Prince Consort.

As a kid, Pattinson wanted to be a magician, a zoologist, or an explorer. He eventually decided to pursue acting and began studying at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts at the age of 15. According to the actor, he initially found it hard to balance studies with his acting career, but after a while he got used to it. He also attended St. Martin’s School of Art and Design in London, where he received his MA.

In 2012, he received a star on the Walk of Fame for his work in television. The following year, he was awarded the Young Person of the Year at the British Music Awards. In 2015, he was named one of the top 10 celebrity chefs in the world by Forbes magazine. Since 2013, Pattinson has been engaged to FKA Twigs, an electronic musician and fashion designer. The couple married in a private ceremony in the summer of 2018.

A Passion for History

Pattinson’s first big break came when he was 18 years old and landed the role of Charlie in the mini-series Victoria & Albert. The following year, he portrayed the role of Rudi in the miniseries The Girl on the Floor, earning him a nomination for the BAFTA Rising Star Award. In 2018, he appeared in the music video for Little Mix’s “Black Magic.” Aside from acting, the 26-year-old also designs furniture, paints, and draws.

While most people might think of vampires when it comes to Hollywood, the actor actually prefers to read about historical figures who were turned into monsters after being bitten by something nasty. He especially enjoys novels that revolve around the Salem Witch Trials in Massachusetts in the 17th century. In 2016, he began studying English literature, history, and linguistics at Oxford Brookes University. “I didn’t have too much homework back in the day,” he joked. “I would just go to the library and get stuck into a good book.”

A Craving for Fantasy

Not much is known about Pattinson’s early years in Hollywood, but it’s safe to assume that he had to overcome some skepticism from his peers in order to establish himself as a leading man. One of the first films he signed on for was the Peter Jackson-produced The Kid with the Dragon Tattoo, in which he plays an assassin named Kovacs. The film was a flop at the box office, but due to its relatively low cost, Jackson was able to make further cuts before releasing it to theaters.

Two years later, he played the lead in the fantasy adventure The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, based on Cassandra Clare’s bestselling novels. The role was a far cry from what he was used to playing, and he admitted that he found it difficult to embody a character with no dialog. “I had to learn how to fake it,” he said. “It came naturally to me, but I didn’t know how to react in certain scenes without talking. So at first I would just do my own ‘talking head’ in post-production.”

The actor’s biggest role to date might be King Arthur, which he will co-star with Morgan Freeman and Tom Hardy. It will be released in cinemas in 2020. Set in the medieval era, the story centers on Arthur (Hardy), the protagonist’s troubled but charismatic father, a warlord who ruled his lands with an iron fist. It is Arthur’s quest to avenge his father’s death at the hands of none other than his own twin brother, Llywelyn (Freeman), whose treachery eventually leads to the formation of the Knights of the Round Table.

Pattinson had previously worked with legendary director and producer Peter Jackson on The Hobbit films, which were a major turning point in the young man’s career. “It was hard not to like Peter,” he said. “Not only did he give me my first break, but he also helped me to believe in myself.” After working with Jackson, Pattinson felt that it was time for him to branch out on his own and try his hand at directing.

“I was inspired to try my hand at directing because of working with such an amazing group of people,” he said. “I learned so much from everyone, especially while making The Hobbit, and I knew that I could bring that same vision to another project.”

The Dark Arts

For an actor, the demand for speaking roles far outstrips the supply, and that holds true for vampires as well. Since the first Twilight film in 2008, Pattinson has starred in more than a dozen movies opposite mostly A-list Hollywood actresses. His recent projects have included the historical-fiction drama Nightingale and the drama/horror hybrid The King. While none of these films have done particularly well at the box office, the actor has still found himself in the right place at the right time. With so many plum roles in mainstream Hollywood, his opportunities have far outstripped his previous accomplishments. And it’s not just Hollywood. The demand for quality voice-overs and audiobook narrators far outstrips the supply as well, and that too is true for vampires.

It is no secret that Hollywood is awash with vampires. With the exception of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, which was first published in 1897, the subgenre has never really gone out of fashion. Many of today’s biggest films are set in the past or in other eras that feature classic vampires. Even TV shows like HBO’s True Blood and Netflix’s El Camino del Frate feature vampires as a focal point, even if they aren’t the stars.

But it’s not just about the costumes and makeup. Vampires in popular culture have always been associated with sex and seduction. Since the 1700s, vampires have been portrayed as men who are both charming and dangerous. It is this duality that makes them an ideal subject for modern erotic fiction.

The Influence of Gaming

Pattinson is a well-known and active gamer, and his passion for historical fiction and non-fiction comes as no surprise considering his day job. One theory surrounding the sudden rise in popularity of video games in the early 2000s is that consumers had more free time due to the pandemic. As a result, they became more active, leading to a rise in health problems and an increased need for relaxation and distraction. This theory makes sense, given that video games are often used to portray conflicts and situations that are stressful and/or depressing. It also helps to explain why gaming has become such a valuable tool for treating certain ailments. For example, the Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (MMORPG) Hearthstone is used to help children with cancer deal with their treatment. Through Hearthstone, children are able to take a step back from their cancer treatment and relax while still feeling like they are improving their life.

Authority Wavering

Even the most diehard Twilight fans might be surprised to learn that while the Twilight films have done well at the box office, they haven’t been supported by critics or scholars. Critics have lambasted the series for its lack of intellectual or cultural value. The recent documentary series The Age of Twilight sheds light on this controversy and presents several academics who challenge the traditional view that vampires are noble creatures who offer their blood to those in need.

Academics and fans alike might be surprised to learn that Bram Stoker, the man who is generally credited with creating the modern vampire, was an Irish writer and a practicing Catholic. While there is no question that Stoker’s 1897 novella Dracula is an important text in the history of the vampire, it has never been suggested that he coined the term “vampire.”