Hardwicke revealed Rob’s secret grooming habit in a new interview in Newsweek magazine. She talks about the young actors she helped launch in Hollywood, and there are more than a few.
Rob and his on- and off-screen girlfriend Kristen Stewart may be the most notable. but Hardwicke also gave a boost to Evan Rachel Wood, in the teen drama “Thirteen,” Emile Hirsch in “Lords of Dogtown” and Nikki Reed, also in “Thirteen,” who also went on to star in the “Twilight” franchise.
And, she also cast Taylor Lautner as Jacob Black, which is a story in itself.
Although some of Hardwicke’s revelations have been published before, it’s always interesting to her hear describe how she matched Pattinson and Stewart in one of the greatest screen romances of their generation.
Not that it was a slam-dunk decision. In fact, Hardwicke said she almost didn’t cast Rob.
The Twilight Director said she had trouble finding an actor otherworldly enough to play vampire Edward Cullen.
Then, she said, she got a call about an actor in London whom she’d never heard of.
“I looked at a couple pictures and was like, ‘I’m not sure,’?” Hardwicke tells the magazine. “He had been fired from his last job, he was unemployed, he was in debt.”
Rob was so eager to try out for the film, he flew to Los Angeles and paid for the tickets himself. He later said he was motivated because he knew Kristen had been cast as Bella.
Their first meeting was electric, Hardwicke recalls.
“I have footage of their first meeting at my dining-room table,” she says. “Kristen was like, ‘It’s got to be Rob!’
“That electricity, or love at first sight, or whatever it is,” she said.
Hardwicke gave him the part, with a warning.
“You’ve got to realize that Kristen is 17 years old,” she said she told him. “She’s underage. You’ve got to focus, dude, or you’re going to be arrested. I made him swear on a stack of Bibles.”
Pattinson kissed Stewart for the first time in his Twilight screen test on Hardwick’s bed.
“MTV came and did an episode in my house filming the bed. It’s legendary,” she said.
There was also one other condition before Rob got the part. He had to pluck his eyebrows!
“They were a bit bushy,” she says. “We needed to see some eyes!”
Rob apparently continues the grooming habit to this day.
Rob’s Water for Elephants co-star Reese Witherspoon also talked about Rob again at the Oscars. Check out the video.
She talks about Rob at 1:20 in the two-minute interview.