Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight series was adapted to screen in 2008 and gained over $900m at the box office. Before it arrived on the silver screen there was tension between the director, Catherine Hardwicke, and the author Meyer when discussing casting.
In a recent interview to mark the 10-year anniversary of the Twilight movies, Hardwicke explains to DailyBeast how she had originally wanted a diverse cast of multi-ethnicity actors playing the main roles. Meyer, however, had a specific picture of the characters and pushed back at Hardwicke’s idea of black or Japanese vampires.
Meyer had allegedly pointed to her books’ description of the vampires saying, “I wrote that they had this pale glistening skin!”
After much discussion, Meyer eventually agreed to Kenyan-born actor Edi Gathegi playing the role of Laurent “one of the scary antagonistic vampires,” Hardwicke recalls, laughing. “The only reason that came through was he was described as having olive skin. And I said, there are black olives out there! Then she was open to the students in [Bella’s] peer group being other ethnicities, so we got Christian Serratos and Justin Chon, so we were able to open it up a little bit.”
“She probably just didn’t see the world that way. And I was like oh my God, I want the vampires, I want them all — Alice, I wanted her to be Japanese! I had all these ideas. And she just could not accept the Cullens to be more diverse, because she had really seen them in her mind, she knew who each character was represented in a way, a personal friend or a relative or something,” Hardwicke told DailyBeast.