The Twilight Saga reaches a major milestone this year, with 2018 marking 10 years since the release of Twilight, directed by Catherine Hardwicke, and franchise star Kellan Lutz talks about his experience with the series. Based on the best-selling books by Stephenie Meyer, Twilight kicked off what would become a massive film franchise. But at the time, none of the stars nor the studio knew how big it would be. Thanks to the success of Twilight, stars Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and more were launched to worldwide fame.
The first film was followed by adaptations of Meyer's second and third books in the series, The Twilight Saga: New Moon and The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, while the fourth book was split into two movies, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1 and Part 2. The film series concluded in 2012 with the release of Breaking Dawn - Part 2, but the legacy of Twilight is forever cemented in Hollywood.
Now, after appearing on the Twilight 10th anniversary panel at New York Comic Con earlier this month and in the wake of Twilight being released on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, Screen Rant had a chance to speak with Lutz about his time working on the franchise and what it's like looking back on the process. Plus, the actor offers some ideas for what a potential Twilight prequel or sequel could be about, and what could truly elevate a possible reboot of the franchise.
Screen Rant: Congratulations on 10 years of Twilight, that’s a major milestone. What’s it like to be looking back on Twilight now a decade later?
Kellan Lutz: What’s it like looking back at Twilight… It really just blows my mind how fast time has gone, how fast time has flown. I can’t believe it’s been 10 years since we did the first one. And it’s just really fun, it’s fun being a part of something. I’m really proud of the movie and how much I enjoyed the process of it and the journey of it. And that’s just what I really appreciated about it all. And it’s cool being a part of something that 10 years goes by and it’s coming back out in theaters because the fans have so much love for it. It’s pretty cool.
Screen Rant: So when it first came out, it was such a massive thing because of the books and then the movie adaptation, of course. But you're now doing all this 10 year anniversary stuff with New York Comic Con and the screenings and everything, has the reception to Twilight changed at all over the last 10 years? And if so, how?
Kellan Lutz: I don’t think so, I think just more and more people have become fans. I think for the fans 10 years ago who were die-hards and would camp out and they didn’t have - y’know, you’re in your teen years, you don’t have as much responsibility as you do in your 20s and 30s. So those fans have grown up, they’re still as in love with it, and even more so for the ones who have their own children now who have been a part of that experience as well, but I think they’ve just matured. They’ve matured with it as much as we have and as the movies have. But it’s still really cool, like even the New York Comic Con panels, the halls were full. I was really surprised how packed those rooms were and how much love fans still have for it.
Screen Rant: So how would you describe Twilight’s legacy in Hollywood and pop culture?
Kellan Lutz: A staple. I mean, it really is. I feel like it lead the way for the Divergent [movies] and Hunger Games so yeah, a staple.
Screen Rant: And looking back now, what was the biggest lesson you learned while working on the Twilight movies?
Kellan Lutz: I have to say, just enjoying the ride. Like, if I could go back and tell myself 10 years ago what to expect, or what to do, it’s really difficult to take it all in and to experience something so grandiose as this franchise. Every premiere you think, "OK I’m going to be really present, I’m going to talk to everyone and I’m going to be there with my family and friends and enjoy this process." And I always remember, you start getting ready for the premiere at like 4 p.m. and then within the blink of an eye, you’re at the premiere, and you’re like, “Oh my god, how did this happen already?” And then within the blink of an eye, the movie’s done and you’re at the after party, and you’re like, “Oh my god, this is so cool, I love what Summit and Lionsgate’s done with the celebration.” And then you’re home and you’re like, “What just happened?” It’s hard to process if that makes sense. It was hard for me to process everything, and I was telling myself, “OK next year I’m going to take more pictures.” It’s a lot, in the best of ways. I guess you could kind of [say] it’s like mimicking a wedding. So I got married last year and you try and remember as much as you can, and then you’re doing your dance with your wife and you’re like, “How did today go by so fast?”
Screen Rant: Totally understandable. So there are still a lot of fans who would want to see the original Twilight cast come back and unite for another movie, do you think that’s possible at all?
Kellan Lutz: Like a remake or a new movie?
Screen Rant: Like a new movie, like a sequel or a prequel - just another new movie with the same cast.
Kellan Lutz: Oh yeah, I think if Stephenie Meyer and Melissa [Rosenberg] wrote something I think we’d all for sure come back for it.
Screen Rant: And if you could come back to tell a specific story about your character, do you have any ideas of what it should be?
Kellan Lutz: Well, yeah so Stephenie wrote an excerpt called ‘Emmett and the Bear’ that showed how he turned into a vampire and how Rosalie saved his life. And I remember reading that and I was like, “Man, this is so cool, I wish we could be able to show this.” Because you’re able to show Alice’s transformation, you’re able to show Jasper’s, and Rosalie’s - but not Emmett’s. So I was always kind of like, “I wish we could do that.” And I think it would be really cool to have a spinoff of Rosalie and Emmett, that would be really fun to do.
Screen Rant: Are there any other particular characters from the franchise that you would like to see get their own stories told, besides Emmett?
Kellan Lutz: Yeah, the Volturi are really interesting. I also think James and Laurent - the bad vampires from the first one - are all really interesting. So there’s definitely a lot of origin stories that you could show that would be fascinating to watch.
Screen Rant: If Twilight was made today, how do you think it would be different?
Kellan Lutz: The first Twilight, or any of the movies?
Screen Rant: Yeah, the first Twilight - if it would be different at all.
Kellan Lutz: Yeah, I think it’d be completely different. I think Catherine [Hardwicke], if she was the director, to begin you’d have triple the budget. You would just have - even the CGI would be better. The difference between the first one and the second movie is just night and day, in my opinion. And we’d have cooler fight scenes. Yeah, you’d just have more of a budget because she only had a certain budget for the first one and then once it did so well, I feel like the doors swung open with every next director and the budget that they were allowed to play with.
Screen Rant: Speaking of Catherine, what was it like working with her on the first movie versus the other directors that came in after her?
Kellan Lutz: Well, she’s the original, so she hired us and every new director that came in had to put their trust in the actors. So like we only got deeper and deeper with our characters and then just to have new directors come in, who were all very talented, and you understand why they were picked for each movie because each movie’s so different and Catherine will always have a special place in my heart.
Screen Rant: So in Hollywood recently we’ve seen a lot of reboots and remakes and revivals. Do you think Twilight will ever get rebooted?
Kellan Lutz: Yeah, I could see it being rebooted. Probably not anytime soon because the other movies, the CGI, the budgets, everything was great. I don’t know what more would be different besides having new actors in it. But if somewhere new technology happens, or new VR experiences and you could integrate the fans into the movie, that’d be a new experience.
Screen Rant: That would be amazing. I think you’ve cracked it, the new idea. So last question, what was your favorite thing to film in Twilight, in either the first movie or the whole franchise.
Kellan Lutz: I just love all the fighting scenes. The wedding scene was really fun because I felt like there was so much build up to it, and also the baseball scene because we were just so innocent and pure. There were no security guards for each actor at that point, so we were just able to be.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Twilight is now available on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray.