Kristen Stewart is back with her favorite leading men, Robert Pattison and Taylor Lautner, to close the book (Part I of the closing, actually) on Bella Swan in Breaking Dawn. Stewart sat down with Buzzine to pontificate about childbirth, shooting two movies simultaneously, playing a pregnant vampire, her friendships with her leading men, and being Snow White…oh, and how she’s just like any other girl.
Izumi Hasegawa: You look sane and normal today. Bill Condon talked about you having a schizophrenic life while making this movie -- playing a virgin in the morning, a vampire in the afternoon, and delivering a baby in the evening. Can you talk about that experience?
Kristen Stewart: Shooting two movies at the same time completely out of sequence wasn't something that initially we were concerned about -- keeping sequences in tact, scheduling-wise. It was like, "Okay, we'll work on this part and we'll work on this part." It really was everywhere within each day, like Bill said. I think what that gave me is that she's always looking into the future and thinking about what she's going to achieve, and ultimately, in this movie, she does get everything she wants, or she's sort of feeling bad about things -- Jacob, for instance, her family... She's very much in her own head.
Basically, what I'm saying is that, being able to play a vampire, a human, a woman's who's pregnant, a woman's who about to get married, literally sometimes within the same day or sometimes within the same week – who knows – actually helped remind me...everything felt more important to me and more relevant to me. Everything felt very close. So I think, if we did it more systematically, it just wouldn't have been the same. Everything was happening all at once, and it was so overwhelming that it was good. It gives you that energy every day.
Q2: Bella has become such a mythological pop culture character, but how does she compare to playing the fairy tale myth of Snow White?
KS: I guess a million (comparisons) could be drawn, but the one thing that sticks out in my mind is that they really are both, in different ways, matriarchs -- very strong matriarchs that need to find that position. You see the whole process, but they're so different. Them both being icons... It's funny -- Snow White -- I didn't grow up on fairy tales. I know everyone says the reason this thing is so cool is that we've all grown up with these stories and it's a retelling. I'm like, "Nah, not really. I didn't." I also didn't grow up with Twilight. So, for me, these things are being put on these characters. Right as I think, "Wow, this is important," everyone goes, "That's important." It's like, "Okay, cool." So I've gotten really lucky. I know Snow White, obviously more so than Twilight, was expected to be important to people because they know it.
IH: You've had a lot of success outside of the Twilight franchise as well. How have you avoided being typecast, and is there another project that you're attracted to outside of the franchise?
KS: The movies that I've done between the Twilight films...I've just been really lucky that they've been very different. Not because I've meant them to be, but literally because the things that I was drawn to happen to be different from the Twilight thing. It's really hard for me to answer questions like that. Right now is the first time in a long time that I haven't worked or haven't known what I was going to be doing, and I don't want to know. I don't want to rush it because I want to have time off to see what I'm interested in, what my interests are. That's not to say that I'm just going, going, going all the time and I don't even know myself. It's not that at all, but it's just that I do want a little bit of time to really figure out what I really, really want to do.
IH: Are you drawn at all to lower profile projects maybe, to escape the hysteria that's followed you throughout the Twilight movies?
KS: No, not necessarily. It really has nothing to do with the profile -- literally zilch, genuinely.
IH: It appears that you lost a considerable amount of weight between the honeymoon and when you were growing. Was that digital?
KS: Yeah, digital, totally. I didn't have time. Everything was sporadically shot. To do that, we would've had to shut down production for a couple of months while I lost the weight or gained it back, whichever we did first.
IH: It looks very genuine.
KS: It's so cool that you're saying that. That's great because you do fear that. It does make you feel a little bit like, "Oh, I hope you guys do a good job," because I can't do that part and it can ruin you, obviously, if you look ridiculous. Obviously, I don't, so those guys are amazing at what they do.
IH: During the wedding scene, as you walked down the aisle, what was going through your mind? You can see all these emotions in your face...
KS: I had a million different things kind of going through my head, and kind of what I kept telling myself was, "Stop, stop, stop. Just do it. Actually have this experience, because you're just about to ruin it if you keep going." I think I was so in the right place to do it that I needed to just put the dress on and go and stand there and walk, and see him and everyone. I know the story so well. The most common question for actors is: "How do you remember all your lines?" It's literally the last thing I think about. If you know a story so well, they just come out. You know it if someone asks you, provokes you in the right way. That's what it is. So I just kept telling myself to find myself in this moment and appreciate it, or else I'd look back and go, "God. Why didn't I just take that ride and just do it? It would've been better in the movie anyway." I tried the best that I could.
IH: You and Taylor Lautner and Rob Pattinson have all experienced this together from the start. What do those two men bring to the whole experience and set that no one else could?
KS: I couldn't have done this... I guess always, if you insert different numbers into the equation, you're going to get a different answer, but I can't imagine what this movie would've been if I didn't have really, really, really solid and always growing relationships with them. Also, the most common question is: "Are you guys a big family? Do you love each other?" Yeah, but it's more the idea that, if I don't see Taylor for a while, I suddenly go, "Oh," and you take your phone out. It's not like I see him all the time or every day, but it's just that, when you work with people like that, you can give so much since you're so comfortable. You can do no wrong. So they've got you. I think we all just got along and it shows.
IH: Have you had a chance to process the impact you've had on so many women and girls?
KS: I love that. I hate when people say, "What advice do you want to give your fans?" Oh, God, I don't even know how to explain this. The people that I look up to you...you find people in life that are your common thing, like, "Yeah, I'm like you." Everyone chooses differently. It's just weird because this question does always sort of present, like, "So why are you better?" I'm literally the same, which is why it's so cool. I thank them too. For the same reason that they like me, I'd like them. It's common ground, and because I'm placed on this pedestal, it looks like, "Wow, it's so incredible that you can be that way." It's like, not really because this is so weird. Trust me. Come on up, you'll see. There's really no difference.
IH: What did you think about all the ado Rob caused by telling people that, since you used a real priest in the wedding scene, you two might accidentally be married?
KS: Honestly, that's the first I've heard of it. He couldn't even remember the vows.
IH: The priest couldn't?
KS: Yeah. I think he was nervous. He was great. He did great, but he kept saying our names as well, and I think that he also called me Bella Elizabeth or something. He definitely messed up my middle name. That's a funny story to come out of all of this because that wasn't my memory of it. And was he even necessarily a real ordained minister? I'd like to find out.
IH: Bella has some major milestones with the marriage, the honeymoon, the first time and, of course, giving birth. I'm sure you might think about what those things would be for you in the future, particularly the parenting part. When you're wearing the belly for the movie, do you think if you will or won't, and if there will be six or one?
KS: It's funny, it's such a far-fetched story, but it's really not if you just compare it to someone who's my age and not in agreement with people that thinking they're making the wrong decision. That's such a common position to be in. Of course, this movie does have every milestone in it -- or not really, but it crams a lot of milestones into one movie. It was almost like, within this series, it doesn't last for a very long period of time, but it was much more of a full experience that you'd get to have with something about a girl that age because of her unique situation.
I really did get to live like 10 to 15 years in like four to five because everything is so important for them, obviously. All the imposing elements just speed everything up and make everything, especially with questions like these, very unreal. Basically, yes, I had all of those experiences. I definitely looked down. Also, my favorite image every single time that I think about this installment -- I just think of a cat in the corner with claws out, belly swollen, like, "Stay the f*ck away from me." That's so cool, and I would only really identify with that. Like, yeah, of course. I can't wait. Lots of milestones. A million times. Heavy, heavy, heavy.
IH: What's on your iPod right now? Are there any specific songs or artists that you want to mention?
KS: This is actually hilarious. I'm doing Snow White right now, and it's really weird being here, to be honest, because I'm so very involved in that right now. Adele's new album. Honestly, I've choreographed whole marches with my army behind me, so I'm listening to that a lot. It's really good for the story, almost oddly good for it -- too good for it. It hit the nail right on the head. It's amazing. She's incredible. Not to give everything away about Snow White. I have a few little things that I listen to a lot right now. I only listen to the things that I'm listening to for the movie right now, and my regulars. Everyone knows what I listen to all ready. It's very boring.
IH: Is there any part of Bella, after finishing your time playing her, that sticks with you?
KS: Parts of her.
IH: Any qualities of hers that you've taken on after portraying her for so many years?
KS: Not really, only because I'm pretty wrapped in her and vice versa. I've always felt like you really project yourself onto that character. If you're the type of girl to identify with Bella, then you just kind of are her. So it's really hard for me, especially when I'm asked, "How do you make her different?" It's not you, but I genuinely had to justify every decision that she made the whole way through. Sometimes your characters in films do things that you wouldn't do. You're not playing yourself all the time. But for her, somehow I could not disagree with her ever. And I didn't. So I'm not sure. I think we're pretty similar at times, but then at times no. It's hard to say.
Summit Entertainment's 'The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1' is released on November 18, 2011.