Life after Death
ROBERT Pattinson doesn’t have much faith in either garlic or crucifixes. The 26- year- old Englishman is banking on a soul- tempering pilgrimage to some of the world’s most arid desert regions – first the Australian Outback and then the Middle East – to free him from Edward Cullen’s immortal curse.
After five films shot in Twilight’s netherworld, the softly spoken Englishman is keen to immerse himself in material that is a little, well, earthier.
Futuristic thriller The Rover and Mission: Blacklist, based on the true story of US Army interrogator Eric Maddox, would both appear to fit the bill.
In Sydney for a special, fan- oriented event to ‘‘ promote’’ Breaking Dawn Part 2, Pattinson identifies the limitations of playing the same character over and over again as the thing he will miss least about the phenomenally successful vampire franchise that catapulted him to stardom.
‘‘ Because [ Edward] is kind of in stasis, it’s difficult to play after a while,’’ Pattinson says, picking his words carefully.
‘‘ You do five movies where your whole motivation is this relationship and it’s never, ever going to change.
‘‘ You don’t die. You don’t get hurt. You don’t age. So you are kind of stuck.’’
After inhabiting the undead heart- throb’s pearly white skin for more than four years, one might have thought Pattinson ( pictured with Twilight co- star Kristen Stewart as Bella) would hardly have broken a sweat going into the final instalment in Stephenie Meyer’s grand gothic romance. But he says the reverse is true.
‘‘ It’s nerve- racking when you go into, like, the fifth movie, you’re thinking: ‘ I don’t know what else to do’. You have nowhere to go!’’
Thankfully, the introduction of Bella and Edward’s child, Renesmee, gave him something to work with.
The actor says he enjoyed working with soon- to- turn 12- year- old Mackenzie Foy, who plays his fast- maturing vampire child as she grows up. But it was the anarchy of the infant performers that really added some fresh blood to the franchise. ‘‘ Because all the vampires are very stylised in their performance, as
soon as you get a baby involved, it shakes everybody up.’’
Despite his tender years, Pattinson has already had a bit of experience with dramatic fatherhood, most recently in Water For Elephants.
But, he says, the real thing is not even on his horizon. In fact, the idea hadn’t even occurred to him until recently, when several of his friends started having children.
When asked what he will miss most when he leaves the Twilight world behind, he says: ‘‘ I’m not sure yet. It’s like being part of a boy band and going solo afterwards.’’
Pattinson has already set about re- positioning himself as a versatile leading man in films such as Water For Elephants and Bel Ami, with Uma Thurman and Christina Ricci.
But it was the positive reviews for David Cronenberg’s weird urban odyssey Cosmopolis that finally lent him some serious, art house credibility.
Post Breaking Dawn Part 2, Pattinson has a slate of films lined up to prove he is no one- character wonder. He is juggling seven features in various stages of development.
‘‘ I don’t understand how it’s going to happen. I am kind of shuffling them around as we speak,’’ he says.
Pattinson insists he has no grand plan for his future. ‘‘ I got lucky this year with a bunch of stuff that is all over the place.’’