Ten years ago, both fandoms and vampire lore as we knew them were changed forever when Twilight was released in theatres. Whether or not you can get behind sparkling vampires, there's no denying the film's culture impact on the world. You'd be hard pressed to find someone in 2008 who didn't have at least one Twi-hard in their life, making it impossible to escape the phenomenon. The cast became stars overnight, and the careers of Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart were especially skyrocketed. However, in director Catherine Hardwick's perfect world, some of the casting choices would have gone down differently.
Hardwicke, despite breaking barriers and records with Twilight, wasn't asked to return to direct the sequels. That being said, we still have her to thank for cementing the universe that drove the following four films. In a recent interview with Daily Beast, Hardwicke let it be known that she originally envisioned a more diverse cast. Unfortunately, the author of Twilight, Stephanie Meyer, was a little too attached to what she had envisioned when writing the characters.
"I had all these ideas," says Hardwicke, "And she just could not accept the Cullens to be more diverse, because she had really seen them in her mind..." Meyer's reasoning was that she had written the characters to have "pale glistening skin", but considering Hardwicke wanted Alice to be Japanese, that excuse doesn't hold much weight.
Hardwicke did manage to get one vampire of color: Laurent, who was played by Edi Gathegi (also known for playing Darwin in X-Men: First Class). "The only reason that came through was he was described as having olive skin. And I said, there are black olives out there," Hardwicke explained. She was also given room to cast Bella's school friends as more diverse, choosing Christian Serratos and Justin Chon to play Angela and Eric.
While it's certainly not surprising to learn there was push back when it came to hiring a diverse cast for Twilight, it is extremely unfortunate. There's no denying that Twilight fans loved the Cullens they got, but it's sad to think there could have been a reality in which the vampire sensation launched a more diverse set of careers.
November 21st is the official ten-year anniversary of the Twilight release, so grab your old Team Jacob t-shirt and get ready to bask in the nostalgia.