Sparkle and Fade?
Subject: Robert Thomas Pattinson, 23-year-old English actor
Date of Assessment: March 12, 2010
Positive Buzzwords: Sparkles, Edward, fangirls
Negative Buzzwords: Sparkles, typecast, shampoo
The Case: Oh, Sparkles. I long to run my hands through your unruly, untamable, and thoroughly unwashed hair. Oh hell. Did I just really type that?
Obviously, I'm referring to Robert Pattinson (hereinafter referred to as "RPattz"), swooner dreamboat to millions (upon millions) of screaming teenage girls and many of their shameless mothers as well. Although RPattz broke his acting teeth upon a minor role, Cedric Diggory, in the rather respectable Harry Potter franchise, his rise to stratospheric fame only began when he accepted the role of vegetarian vampire Edward Cullen in the much maligned (by critics) adaptation of the first installment of Stephanie Meyer's Mormon lovechild, Twilight. Let me confirm what Dustin already throughly detailed in his review; indeed, this was some of the most throughly awful shit to grace the celluloid screen. Even more perplexing is that fact that audiences, who willingly and repeatedly bought tickets, nearly wholly agreed that Twilight was a dreadfully clichéd movie that nearly perfectly captured the spirit of a dreadfully cliché book. Still, the laughably contrived storytelling -- which only encourages the unrealistic expectations of teenage girls -- was handsomely rewarded with $396 million at the global box office. Even worse, New Moon raked in $702 worldwide. This summer, Eclipse could do even greater numbers, and there's really no telling how ridiculously well Breaking Dawn (a.k.a. the creepy CGI baby that broke Bella) shall perform. For the actors of Twilight, however, such certainty is limited to this franchise, and, when the sun sets upon Edward and Bella's love story, how will RPattz fare as a future movie star?
Well, there's something to be said for low expectations. On the flip side, the reported eight-figure salary for each member of Breaking Dawn's unholy trinity -- RPattz, Kristen Stewart, and Taylor Lautner -- will ensure that none of them will someday be forced to turn to "Celebrity Big Brother" for a meal ticket. Yet, most actors are creatures who desperately and perpetually seek self-validation, so one can be nearly certain that the three Twilight stars will each attempt to forge paths as "serious actors" in Hollywood. During all Twilight-related salary negotiations, the three have famously s[t]uck together in manner of the cast of "Friends" once did. When it comes to post Twilight success, however, will RPattz and colleagues suffer the same curse of "Friends" cast?
Survey says that RPattz might just be the "Rachel" of the Twilight trio by transcending his hairdo, getting dumped by Kristen Stewart, and finding an eternally sympathetic audience who will still flock to a series of pathetic romantic comedies by shall belittle him but still nicely augment the bank account. Alternatively, RPattz could suffer from "Chandler Bing" syndrome by falling into a pit of substance-abuse related weight fluctuations along with the realization that he's got no real acting range. It's very difficult to project which direction RPattz's career shall take, for the Edward Cullen role doesn't really allow him much room to maneuver and show off any actual acting skills. Yes, RPattz is stilted and uncomfortable as Cullen, but that's also how his character is written. Ironically, the future success of dreamboat shall be very much dependent on his other roles outside the Twilight Saga, but will audiences allow him to escape his pale-faced and glittering confines?
For what it's worth (and it ain't much), here's what I predict for the Twilight stars: Lautner will start out strong as the highest-paid teenage actor but will lose his appeal after a string of bad role choices as a preemptively-declared action star; Stewart will continue to appear within a string of indie-cred building vehicles but will finally be exposed for the open-mouthed lip biter that we all know so well; RPattz, however, is the wild card. He could follow-up with a string of romantic comedies and quickly fizzle out, or he could pull a Leonard DiCaprio and find himself a
sugar daddy director like Martin Scorsese in need of a muse.
The Prognosis: With this weekend's Remember Me -- which, so far, is receiving mixed reactions but whispers of a James Dean-esque turn by RPattz himself -- as well as future turns in and Bel Ami (with costars Uma Thurman and Christina Ricci) and Water for Elephants (alongside the likes of Oscar-winners Christoph Watlz and Reese Witherspoon), RPattz could -- just maybe -- potentially build a respectable career. If all else fails, like I said, he could always dig that well-stocked bank account or even pick up his guitar and try the rock star thing.
Agent Bedhead lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma and can be found at agentbedhead.com.