My project of Cullen Cars.
Q: How did you get involved with TheTwilight Saga: Eclipse? Was it just a regular audition?
Kirsten: Yeah, it was just a regular audition. I had just come off of two films, and it was after Kyle XY, which was a television show I worked on for three years. I had been working on it for so long and, before that, I hadn’t taken a real break because I had been working steadily since I was 10 years old. So, at the end of Kyle XY, which also happen to coincide with the end of my high school career, I decided to go off to University and leave the industry. I went for a year to McGill University and I majored in English literature, and I took all my advanced classes that I prepared for in high school, and I had a great time there. I got straight A’s and was on the honor roll. But then, when I came back to Vancouver during the summer, I went for an audition because it was what I was used to doing, and I booked it. And then, I booked something right after that was a mini-series that would shoot into the school year. So, at that point, I decided to put off going back to University.
I had just come off of two shows and, in between filming them, I had gone for Eclipse. I read for a different vampire, called Bree, who is a brunette with short, short hair that is 13 years old and completely not me, but I went for the audition just because it was a big project. I can tell you that I’ve never felt that level of nervousness in an audition room, in my whole career. I had read the books, but it hadn’t really sunk in what a huge phenomenon Twilight was. I went into it and it was an important audition, but I wasn’t really nervous. I was just focusing on my work, but a lot of people were just so stressed out. I went to the audition room, and then I heard back about the audition that I was wrong for the character, but they wanted me to come back for another vampire that was essentially the same size role and everything, except she had long blonde hair, was extremely pale and was older. So I went in, did one audition and a week later, I got a call and then showed up on set. It was pretty rapid. I only had one audition for it because I’d already auditioned for another character and they’d seen what I could do.
More of Kirsten’s interview after the break!
IESB: Had you seen Twilight before auditioning?
Kirsten: Yeah, I had. I was very familiar with the franchise, just because my younger sister was reading the books. I was curious about what she was reading because she was just going through them like nothing. I was like, “What is that?” And she said, “It’s Twilight. It’s a vampire romance.” And I was like, “Oh, that sounds kind of cool.” I started reading it and I just shot through it. It was very readable stuff. And I’d seen the movie because everyone’s seen it.
IESB: What can you say about your character in Eclipse? How does she fit into the story?
Kirsten: Without revealing too much, Lucy is one of the vampires that turns Jasper, played by Jackson Rathbone. Jasper gets turned while he is an officer, and I’m one of the vampires that causes Jasper to be turned during his military career. Lucy appears to be an innocent little victim, and then she turns into something a lot more sinister.
IESB: Is Lucy the darkest character you’ve ever played?
Kirsten: I’ve always been on the good side. I’ve never played a villain, in my entire career. I’m the girl next door, or the girl who helps out, or the girl that makes an innocent escape. For once, I got to look all innocent and have that angelic quality, and then, all of a sudden, turn into something really dark. That was fun for me. That was the first villain that I’ve ever played.
IESB: Did you do anything to get to know Jackson before filming, or did you just click right away?
Kirsten: We actually got along really well. We met in the make-up trailer, during the make-up testing, before filming even started. When I first got the part, they had to figure out whether they had to airbrush you, which in my case they didn’t really because I’m already pale enough. But, they take a look at you, and design your hair and the hair pieces you’re going to wear, and all that. So, I met Jackson when he was getting his hair done. He was getting his hair dyed by the on-set stylist, and he was getting weird patterns shaved into it underneath, which was kind of funny.
IESB: Playing a vampire, were you at all disappointed that you weren’t going to get to wear fangs?
Kirsten: When I was reading the books, I was very surprised that there weren’t fangs. The vampires in the Twilight Saga don’t have fangs. We sparkle. No, I wasn’t disappointed. The thing is, a lot of the actors that have been hired have very nice teeth that are very noticeable. They’ve picked people with teeth that stand out. It’s more threatening. You notice that there’s something different about that person’s teeth, but it’s not fangs. It’s not obvious. You don’t know you’re going to get bitten. I was not disappointed. When someone tells you you’re going to be a vampire in Twilight, the reaction is not disappointment. I’ve had to deal with prosthetic teeth and it’s not fun.
IESB: How secretive were they with you, when you were auditioning? Did you get to read actual scenes?
Kirsten: No. The technique that they used for the audition was that they made the scenes exact transcripts from the book. It was very strange to audition with them because they were written to be read and they weren’t adapted yet. They didn’t give the screenplay out. So, the audition side was just reading a page of Twilight and reading the lines that were interspersed between the descriptions. That’s what it was like. They could never distribute that. Even when I got the job, the secrecy was so high in the Twilight world.
IESB: While you were shooting, did you have any experiences with the paparazzi?
Kirsten: Oh, yeah. The first day that Jackson came into work, he almost tripped on the stairs, coming out of his house, because there were so many photographers that he couldn’t even see. The circus around all the trailers and everything was crazy. They had giant black dividers to keep paparazzi out. On the first day, they took down all the signage and blocked everything out. All the actors had to wear bathrobes to cover their wardrobe in between scenes. It was really intense.
I was born and raised in Vancouver, and I’ve done a lot of film work in Vancouver. I worked with Jennifer Garner on Elektra and there was a lot of paparazzi on that as well. But, Vancouver has changed a lot since Twilight. It’s changed the whole media culture there. We didn’t used to have paparazzi. You’d get five, tops. And then, on Twilight, all of a sudden it was like, “Where did all these photographers come from?” They were hiding everywhere. There were hundreds, just waiting. It’s part of the whole phenomenon of Twilight. You have to just take it as it comes because it’s just nuts.
IESB: How was David Slade, as a director? Had you been familiar with any of his previous work?
Kirsten: Yeah, I had. He’s a great guy because his way of working is so open. He just says, “Do what you do,” and lets you play with it. If he has notes, he gives them to you, but he’s a very open director. He keeps it light. He loves his job and he’s very serious about it. He’s a great director.
‘Now that I’m getting older, I’m finally getting to the point where I can fit into those things’.About her role on The Runaways (sexy wild child rocker with a girl-on-girl kiss), she dished: ‘I really enjoyed doing that subject matter for the first time in a biopic, because it really happened, it’s not just a made-up story about a 15-year-old running wild. It’s a true story of her evolution from good Valley Girl to bad rock ‘n roll princess’.She shared about her kissing Kristen Stewart: ‘It’s passionate,they were just as close as two could get’.About drugs, specially the cocaine: ‘It’s actually crushed B vitamins. Kristen and I were, like, our hair is gonna grow a lot from these’.