Twilight Sage: Eclipse - Kristen Stewart
Kristen Stewart © Summit

It’s once again time to choose between Team Edward and Team Jacob.

Don’t want to play? Well, Bella Swan has to choose in the third installment of The Twilight Saga: Eclipse. Based on the phenomenally successful novels by Stephenie Meyer, Kristen Stewart reprises her role of Bella, faced with the dilemma of her life, choosing between her love for Edward (Robert Pattinson) and her friendship with Jacob (Taylor Lautner) – knowing her decision could ignite the ageless struggle between vampires and werewolves.

At the press event for the movie, Kristen Stewart spoke about her journey portraying Bella, the crucial decision that her character has to make, and if Edward or Jacob are truly good choices for any woman!

You’re in the middle of this journey with Bella Swan. Do you worry that it’s taking over your persona? How do you feel about your life and career versus Bella?

This is a really unique situation. I get to play Bella for a really long time, and that’s also a serious indulgence and something that’s really lucky because I feel really sad when I lose a character at the end of a short shoot, which is typically six weeks on a small movie. That’s what I’m used to.

It’s obviously the one role that’s put me in this epic position, but it’s just another movie. It doesn’t matter if you’re doing a studio movie or you’re doing an independent movie. When you get to set and you’re doing a scene, it’s always going to be the same job. I really don’t think about my career, in terms of planning it out and what this does for me. This was a part that I just really wanted to play and, luckily, I got to do it for a really long time

In this film, Bella has to make a decision. Did you feel like that was a big challenge?

Twilight Sage: Eclipse - Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart
Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart © Summit

Yeah. There’s definitely the conflict, in that she’s pushed to the point where the decision needs to be made in this one. What’s cool is that things change and, as certain as she is sometimes, and as absolutely gung-ho, young, courageous and brave as she is, she’s also willing to take a step back and go, ‘Okay, I’m going to reconsider my options and reconsider how I’m treating everybody.’

Was there one scene that was really challenging for you?

One of the most challenging scenes would probably be kissing Jacob for real, finally for the first time, and seeing that there was a different road to go down that was desirable as well.

She’s got such tunnel vision that Edward is the only thing for her. That’s a strange perspective. Then, I have to go in and talk to Edward about it, and it’s such a different dynamic than we’ve ever had. It was a different Bella. I had never had to play somebody who would’ve done stuff like that, so that was hard, and I was nervous as hell.

Because of the kiss?

Just because of that moment and how different that kiss is to all of the rest of them in that movie. It is the most unique moment. It’s also a mistake, and I always say that Bella makes a lot of mistakes and she’s willing to own them. I think it’s cool to see her a little bit ashamed and, at the same time, scared.

Some suggest that the success of these movies has to do with forbidden love, in loving a vampire, mixed with traditional family values. What do you think?

The Twilight Saga: New Moon - Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner
The Twilight Saga: New Moon - Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) and Jacob Black (Taylor Lautner) © Summit Entertainment

I think that, if you took out all the mythical aspects of the story, that it would still stand as a really strong and interesting thing to be a part of. I think the whole vampire and werewolf thing are really good plot devices. All of the aspects of the vampire and werewolf are fully encompassed by the humans, by Jacob and Edward. If all of that was gone, they would still be the same people.

I don’t think it’s a big phenomenon because of the mythical vampire aspect. It definitely takes a good story and it raises the stakes and makes it a little bit more interesting. But I think it’s just about how whole the characters are and how easy it is to have faith in them and be addicted to them.

Are either Edward or Jacob really good choices in men, since they’re both a little obsessive and possessive?  Are they actually good fantasy choices that young girls should dream about?

I don’t know. People always wonder if we should be giving little girls ideas of meeting the perfect man. It’s not something that’s been shoved into their heads. Everyone has that ideal and, especially, little girls have this idea in their head that there is something that could be perfect for them. That they can be better than all the rest of the girls because they’ll have the perfect guy who will never screw them over.

Our movie isn’t perfect. None of our characters are perfect, at all. They’re all so completely crazy and messed up, and that’s why they go well together. They don’t make excuses for their weirdness and they accept each other for who they are. Jacob is a nutcase. If you’re really in love with someone, then it doesn’t matter because that’s such an overpowering feeling and you’re willing to make sacrifices. That’s our whole story.

We will be back to hear more from Kristen in the next few days…


Judy Sloane

Judy is Film Review Online's regular Los Angeles based reporter.