In the summer of 2021, the world met the latest Caped Crusader, when Robert Pattinson played the character in the first of his two films based on the DC Comics icon. Today, we’re taking a look at the actor’s career, analyzing his performances in both live action and animated films, identifying key differences between the two types of movies, and outlining some of the actor’s best and worst roles. Let’s dive in.
Live Action vs. Animated
The first and most important distinction you need to make is whether you’re looking at this actor’s career from a perspective that includes or excludes his performance in the 2019 anime, Shazam! In the case of Shazam!, we’re going to include it because the film did so well and it’s been such a phenomenon, but for the most part, when we’re talking about Robert Pattinson’s performance, we’re going to exclude it.
For decades, Hollywood has been dominated by live action adaptations of famous anime and manga properties, but in recent years, that trend has begun to shift. In 2019, animated movies took home four of the five Academy Awards presented that year, with the other award going to Ford v. Ferrari, the acclaimed sports drama. The Academy also presented its first Best Animated Film statue to Bao, a critically acclaimed story of a Chinese mother and daughter trying to make a living in France.
This trend could be attributed to several factors, including rising global awareness of anime and manga, as well as a changing demographic in Hollywood. The latter is largely due to the phenomenon of anime fans becoming moviegoers, with millennials leading the way.
If you haven’t seen Bao, you should really check it out. It’s one of the best animated films of the past 10 years, and it’s largely due to the performance of its lead, Lupita Nyong’o. The Oscar-nominated actress starred in the film, and although it’s her first big-budget American production, she certainly did not disappoint. Nyong’o gave an incredible performance as the determined mom, battling both French customs and bureaucracy to provide the best life for her family. It’s safe to say that Nyong’o will not be returning to France anytime soon, and it’s clear that Bao was made possible due to her performance, not just in the film, but also in the animated form, which is something that can’t be said for most live action adaptations.
This is similar to the case of The Lion King, which also starred an Academy Award-nominated actress, Nicole Kidman. The 2019 film was a live action adaptation of the 1994 Disney animated classic, and although it wasn’t perfect, it was still a critical and commercial success, largely due to Kidman’s performance as the vixen, Mufasa’s second wife, Scar.
Even films inspired by beloved childhood characters can benefit from the talents of an award-winning actress. In 2022, Warner Bros. will be releasing a live action version of Pokémon, which will be based on the hugely popular video game series. If there’s one thing we’ve learned about Hollywood over the past few years, it’s that video games aren’t quite as popular as they used to be. It’s possible that with the upcoming adaptation of Pokémon, the video game industry will become all-too-familiar with the fame and success of Hollywood’s most famous redhead.
Robert Pattinson’s Best & Worst Performances
If you’re looking for an actor to emulate, Robert Pattinson is certainly your man. The British actor has been in the news a lot lately, and it’s not been for the most positive reasons. In 2019, he was arrested for domestic violence against an Instagram model named Bella Hadid. Since then, he’s had several brushes with the law, including attacking a photographer outside of a London nightclub and being detained by police at a Donald Trump event in London.
It’s fair to say that Robert Pattinson hasn’t been doing himself any favors in the court of public opinion, but what exactly is he getting himself into? Let’s take a look at his career, identifying his best and worst performances, and why. This will include both his live action and animated filmography.
The Twilight saga was undoubtedly Robert Pattinson’s biggest success. The series, adapted from the popular vampire romance novels by Stephenie Meyer, is the actor’s highest-grossing live action film, both in terms of box office and worldwide earnings. It also helped launch his film career, with the actor soon landing lead roles in several high-profile Hollywood productions.
It didn’t take long for Robert Pattinson to establish himself as a leading man, and his performance as an alpha male vampire, Edward Cullen, was very well-received, at least by those who are familiar with the source material. Even now, more than a decade after its premiere, Twilight continues to be one of the most popular film franchises of all time. It inspired two feature-length manga adaptations, as well as an anime. Additionally, the saga was responsible for launching the careers of several A-list actresses, including Kristen Stewart and Emily Blunt. If you haven’t seen Twilight, you should probably check it out. Not to spoil anything, but it’s an excellent film, and it’s probably the best of the saga, if you haven’t seen it yet.
The Loved One
In 2018, Robert Pattinson was cast in one of his most high-profile projects to date. Roman Coquio’s semi-autobiographical The Loved One, an adaptation of the famous William Somerset Maugham novella, starring alongside Ruth Wilson as an elderly widow, Helen, who goes on a cross-country road trip with her granddaughter, Carole, played by Elle Fanning. The film adaptation was a critical and commercial success, winning several awards, including the Grand Prix at the Cannes Film Festival. At the moment, the only bad reviews I’ve read about The Loved One involve some fans feeling that it borrowed too much from the original story. Still, if you haven’t seen it yet, you should probably try and see it, as it’s another excellent performance from Robert Pattinson, who continues to impress after more than a decade in Hollywood.
In 2007, Robert Pattinson played Henry VIII in the historical drama, The King’s Speech. The next year, he gained international recognition for his portrayal of the tragicomic character Ron Swanson in the comedy, Happy Days. Since then, Robert Pattinson has mainly starred in indie films and short-subjects for television. He’s also lent his voice to several video games, most notably the Assassin’s Creed series, in which he’s reprised his role of Connor from the 2016 movie, Assassin’s Creed.
Revenant, the actor’s upcoming feature-length film, is based on the 1862 Gabrielle-Annual, a collection of poetry by French author, Émile Zola. The title refers to the mythological creature, a type of werewolf, which was notably featured in the 1924 French horror classic, Blood And Roses. Robert Pattinson plays Louis Darget, an aging French artist who comes back from the dead, hell-bent on revenge against those who betrayed and killed him. When the full moon rises, he can transform himself into a monster, and continue his bloody rampage. The film’s working title, Revenge, was changed to Revenant at the last minute, but it’s still considered a mouthful. The marketing for the film has focused on the fact that Louis Darget is an art forger, and the movie poster artwork is included in the movie.
This is a very dark, twisted story, and there’s lots of suspense and dread throughout, largely thanks to the superb acting of Robert Pattinson. If you’re a fan of scary stories, this one’s for you. You can also check out the fantastic Japanese horror anthology, Shudder, which includes a short film with Robert Pattinson in it. The anthology also stars Juliette Binoche and Jeremy Irons, and was directed by Takashi Koizumi, whom you may recognize from the Netflix series, Stranger Things.
Clouds Over Catalunya
In October of 2021, we’ll be seeing a lot more of Robert Pattinson. The actor will star in the upcoming Stephen Simon Theatre Company production of William Shakespeare’s The Tempest, which will mark the first time that any of Shakespeare’s plays have been produced in Australia. This will be followed by a tour of the UK in early 2022.