This is who Stephanie Meyer originally wanted to play Bella and Edward in Twilight

5 May 2020, 16:05 | Updated: 12 November 2020, 14:41

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By Katie Louise Smith

Henry Cavill and Emily Browning as Edward and Bella? It's almost impossible to imagine.

With the news that the Twilight saga is back in business following the announcement of Stephenie Meyer's new Edward Cullen-focused book, Midnight Sun, it's time to take a look back at the early days of the franchise – long before Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson were cast.

Back in 2018, for the 10th anniversary, BuzzFeed resurfaced an old post on Stephenie Meyer's website where she had dream cast the roles of her characters, including Bella, Edward and Jacob.

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In a blog post called 'Twilight Movie Updates from 2007', Meyer listed all the actors who she envisioned as the perfect real-life faces to bring her fictional vampires to life on-screen. Any Twi-hard worth their salt will already know this, but for those just rediscovering their love for the franchise, the films you know and love could have been completely different.

Twilight author Meyer originally wanted Henry Cavill to play Edward
Twilight author Meyer originally wanted Henry Cavill to play Edward. Picture: Summit Entertainment, Mike Marsland/WireImage

Bella Swan

Before Kristen Stewart took the role, Meyer had her sights set on Emily Browning (A Series of Unfortunate Events), with Ellen Page and Danielle Panabaker also in the mix. Popular fan suggestions included: Alexis Bledel, Rachel McAdams and Anna Paquin.

In an update on the blog post, Meyer later revealed her excitement over Kristen's casting, which was all thanks to director Catherine Hardwicke.


Edward Cullen

Meyer's dream choice to play Edward Cullen was Henry Cavill, citing him as "the only actor I’ve ever seen who I think could come close to pulling off Edward Cullen".

But after the ball took a little too long to roll on the movie production front, she soon decided that Henry was too old to play Edward. (He would have been 24 at the time of her blogpost.) In an update, she later suggested Tom Sturridge or Logan Lerman for the role.

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Meyer also added the most popular fan suggestions for the role which included: Hayden Christensen, Robert Pattinson, Orlando Bloom and MCR's Gerard Way. However, her favourite fan suggestions were: Mike Vogel, Drew Fuller, Hugh Dancy and Jackson Rathbone (who went on to play Jasper in the franchise.)


Jacob Black

As we all know, Taylor Lautner was eventually cast as the werewolf heartthrob in the franchise, but before that, Meyer said that actor Steven Strait 'is sort of what Jacob looks like in my head."

Strait was then deemed too old to play teenage Jacob by Meyer, and she suggested Tyler Posey instead.


As for the other roles? Meyer's dream choice to play Carlisle Cullen was Charlie Hunnam. For Alice and Rosalie, her choices were Rachel Leigh Cook and model Joanna Krupa, who she thought looked the most like how she envisioned the character. (Olivia Wilde was also a popular choice amongst fans.)

As Bella's dad Charlie, her dream actor was John C. Reilly. And for Emmett, Daniel Cudmore, who later played Felix in the saga.

Speaking about the casting of the films years later, director Catherine Hardwicke expressed how she actually wanted a more diverse cast, but Meyer rejected her ideas.

In an interview with The Daily Beast in 2018, Hardwicke said: “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 representing in a way, a personal friend or a relative or something.”

The more you know...

[H/T] Teen Vogue