You may know him as the adorable and talented heartthrob Robert Pattinson, who rose to fame after his role in the Twilight film series. But did you know that the actor has a rich and varied past life beyond his Hollywood stardom? Here’s an illustrated tour of Robert Pattinson’s personal life and work, spanning from his early years to present day.
Early Life and Education
Robert Pattinson was born on November 25, 1986, in London, England. Both of his parents are photographers, and it was thus inevitable that Robert would grow up surrounded by images. The young actor spent his earliest years in Paris, where he attended a private school. He then relocated to London in 2003, when he was just 11 years old. The youngster began studying at Eton College, an expensive, prestigious, all-boys’ school – the equivalent of America’s Harvard University. There he met and befriended a young boy who would later become his costar in the Twilight films. After two years at Eton College, Robert moved to Venice, Italy, to study opera. During this time, he also attended a performing arts high school in London. And did I mention that he’s a brilliant pianist?
Like many of his celebrity peers, Robert Pattinson enjoys being at the center of the media spotlight. The young actor has been romantically linked to famous women such as Katy Perry and singer/songwriter Amber Heard. In 2017, he was even rumored to be dating Taylor Swift. But while some of his relationships have been widely publicized, other aspects of his personal life have remained private – at least until now.
Although many details of his private life remain a mystery, we can be certain of one thing: Robert Pattinson is dedicated to his friends, family, and the people that he loves most. He is protective of those he cares about, and is never seen or heard talking about his costars or fellow actors in a negative light. And he certainly has a way with the ladies!
Before he could even think about pursuing an acting career, Robert Pattinson had to complete a number of mandatory services. He had to work for three months as a lifeguard at a private club in Los Angeles. He also did some voice work for an animated film called Bambi vs. Godzilla. After completing his duties as a lifeguard, he traveled to New York to attend the prestigious Alvin Ailey Dance Theater School. He was then accepted at the prestigious British American Drama Academy, and began studying performance arts. He is now a qualified acting teacher, and has even been known to give master classes!
While still a teenager, Robert Pattinson began exploring the role of romantic lead in films. His first leading role was in a short film called The Voyeur, which featured an older man watching a woman undress. The role was a stark contrast to his boyish looks, and even landed him an agent. He also starred opposite Mandy Moore in a short film called What You Made Me Believe. It’s safe to say that Robert Pattinson was well on his way to Hollywood stardom.
While some of his early films were small roles in mostly British or American productions, his fame grew rapidly once he began working with international film companies. He first appeared in a small role in Woody Allen’s highly regarded Midnight in Paris, and followed this with a lead role in another Allen film, Vicky Cristina Barcelona. He then starred in Disney’s adaptation of the classic Peter Pan, and landed arguably his most well-known role as Edward Cullen in the Twilight films.
The franchise has become a cultural phenomenon, earning over $15 billion at the box office and spawning several companion novels and soundtrack albums. While the Twilight films were immensely popular, it’s clear that Robert Pattinson didn’t want to rest on his laurels. He has continued working steadily, and recently starred in the war film Prisoner of War. The film is based on true events that transpired during World War II. He plays an American soldier who befriends a German girl (Liv Tyler) while imprisoned in a Japanese camp. The pair fall in love, despite the war’s many horrors.
Although he has worked steadily, it hasn’t all been smooth sailing. Back in 2015, he almost didn’t finish production on the Twilight films, when he was struck down by a bout of severe flu. It took him three weeks to recover, and during that time, only his daily workouts enabled him to remain active.
The Twilight Phenomenon
There are many reasons why The Twilight Saga is so successful. One of the main reasons is the appealing chemistry between its young stars. But it also helped that the films were executed with cinematic prowess and visual symbolism. It’s hard to argue that the series wasn’t influenced by the 2010s.
The world had already embraced subliminal imagery and symbolism in music, fashion, and film before Twilight. But the series truly broke new ground, utilizing dream logic and self-reflection in ways that hadn’t been seen before. And it didn’t hurt that Hollywood’s biggest stars were flocking to be a part of such a special project.
Some of the most iconic songs from the series are undoubtedly its theme songs. They’re so closely linked to the films that they almost feel like an extension of the stories themselves. It would be quite an honor to have your song chosen to represent your film.
It’s been over a decade since Edward Cullen first caused a sensation with his haunting vocals, and it seems that the song has never been out of the top 40 charts. In fact, it’s still one of the most downloaded songs in the world, despite its almost ubiquity. Worldwide, it’s been certified quadruple platinum.
The success of the song marked the beginning of a long collaboration between the musician and the film’s director, David Slade. The pair wrote the song while on set, during pauses between takes. Slade even went so far as to say that the song represents “all the things that scare me and excite me about life.”
Since then, other songs from the series have become just as popular, if not more so. In 2017 alone, a song taken from the soundtrack album, Hidden Love, became Van Cleef’s most successful single since 2004. The song is a heartfelt ballad, detailing the troubled relationship between a father and son. Like many of the series’ songs, it’s been covered by other artists and heard in other films and shows.
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that fashion plays a huge role in The Twilight Saga. The films’ stylings are so inextricable from the stories that it wouldn’t be strange if fashion were the series’ major theme. After all, the films are primarily set in a beautiful and stylish Paris – a city that has been ingrained in the public consciousness as the fashion mecca of the world.
The first Twilight film, Twilight, was released in 2007. At the time, it was the biggest media hit since the release of Michael Jordan’s film, Space Jam, the previous year. It also spawned a fashion craze that continues to this day. In fact, people are still wearing their Twilight-branded fashion choices 12 years later.
It wasn’t just the film’s incredible box office returns that made it so memorable. It was also the way in which it influenced fashion, music, and culture at large. And at the dawn of the 2010s, it was clear that something had changed. People weren’t just paying attention to Hollywood – celebrities were setting the trends and defining the culture.
Whatever the future holds for Robert Pattinson, it’s hard to deny that he will always be remembered for his role in The Twilight Saga. It’s been 12 years since his breakout performance in the film, and it seems that he’s still not going to stop starring in films. He’s currently filming the dystopian adventure, The Lighthouse, which will be released this year. In it, he plays a lightkeeper who must protect a young girl (Imogen Poots) from evil scientists who want to unlock the gateway to another world. His other upcoming film, Birds of Prey, will be his first appearance in the lead role of a solo film, since his role in the Twilight films. And perhaps most excitingly, he stars in the highly anticipated Disney+ series, The Woody Woodpecker Show, where he plays the title character, a skilled woodpecker who moonlights as a lawyer. It premieres this October.
Whatever the future holds, it’s clear that Robert Pattinson will always have a special place in the hearts and minds of movie goers and TV viewers alike. He may be a Hollywood superstar, but he’s also a global phenomenon with a diverse range of interests – not just film, but music, fashion, and even ballet!