Playing the pale-skinned, soft-spoken, and occasionally glittering vampire Edward in the Twilight movies has kept Robert Pattinson quite busy over the past few years. He’s managed to appear in a handful of other projects during that time and has now landed the lead role in a horror tale of the existential kind, Cosmopolis.

Cult auteur David Cronenberg is the creative force behind the book-to-film adaptation, which was originally set to star Colin Farrell and Marion Cotillard. The latter is reportedly still attached to the project, while Farell is expected to begin work on the Total Recall remake this spring.

Deadline claims that Pattinson decided to sign on for Comopolis as he is a big fan of both Cronenberg’s work and that of author Don DeLillo, who penned the source material. DeLillo’s novel follows a day in the life of 28-year old billionaire Eric Packer, who travels across Manhattan in order to get a haircut from his preferred barber. Through a series of chance encounters with his wife (Cotillard), strange individuals, and his own costly financial miscalculations, Packer begins to see his world of wealth and privilege in an entirely new and unpleasant light.

Paul Giamatti is reported onboard for Cosmopolis as well and may play one of the peculiar people that Packer encounters on his journey, whose ranks include a “pastry assassin” and a “credible threat,” as they identify themselves. It’s a strange tale, no doubt, but considering that Cronenberg’s previous cinematic ventures have included human insects, diabolical gynecologists, and people that fetishize wounds from automobile accidents… strange becomes a relative term when this director is involved.

For all the flack that Pattinson takes for being Edward in the ultra-popular supernatural teen romance series, he has attempted to play more than just a Hollywood heartthrob onscreen. Pattinson stuck on a fittingly oddball mustache to star as a young Salvador Dali in Little Ashes and donned a floppy-haired hippy look to play a troubled youth in the indie dramedy How to Be – both of which, admittedly, were being made before he hit it big in Twilight.

The actor has so far stuck primarily to appearing in coming of age stories like last year’s moody drama Remember Me, as well as the upcoming adaptation of Water For Elephants. While Pattinson is certainly far from being a screen presence to be reckoned with, his post-Twilight career is far from a sure thing. He could go the route of Leonardo DiCaprio post-Titanic and become a well-respected thespian on his own terms – or perhaps Breaking Dawn will mark the last time Pattinson’s face adorns the poster for a major Hollywood production.

Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon on the set of 'Water For Elephants'.

Signing on for Cosmopolis certainly seems like a move in the right direction for Pattinson. There’s something almost poetic about him playing an ultra-successful young man who is living a life of riches and fame – and decides that his existence is more a nightmare than an enviable dream. That’s not to mention that, with Cronenberg at the helm, the film will undoubtedly be far more (intentionally) twisted than anything Pattinson has starred in before.

We’ll keep you posted on the development of Cosmopolis as more information is released.

Source: Deadline