Among the most popular teen franchises in the 2000s was Twilight. With a total of 5 franchise films between 2008 to 2012, the series grossed over $3 billion globally. It was an adaptation of Stephanie Meyer’s novel series Twilight, starring Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, and Taylor Lautner in the lead roles.
The first film had a teen-centric plotline, a love triangle between a vampire, a human, and a werewolf. The first novel described Lautner’s werewolf character as a skinny teenage boy, however, in New Moon, his character matured into a bulky, grown-up character. Therefore, Lautner recently revealed that despite him acing the character, the crew wanted to replace him with another muscular guy.
Taylor Lautner’s ordeal with Twilight: New Moon
Appearing in a podcast with his wife, Taylor Lautner reminisced about his Hollywood breakthrough role in Call Her Daddy with Alex, on Spotify. He also talked about dealing with body image issues during his Twilight days. After Lautner witnessed a sudden bolt of fame owing to 2008’s Twilight, he didn’t expect that he’d have to worry about keeping his role in the franchise. Sadly, that wasn’t the case.
Revealing his dilemma, he recollected the time when he was informed about being recast in the second installment. Lautner said,
“My character in the first book is supposed to be like a 16-year-old little scrawny boy, and in the middle of New Moon, he transforms into this 25-year-old looking built, muscular man. So their plan all along was to cast a 16-year-old, which they did. I was 16 at the time. And then they were going to cast like a mid-20s guy to carry on and be Jacob for the rest of the franchise. I had to fight for my role back.”
Ahead of the shooting for New Moon began, the 31-year-old actor received a call from the production, and they broke the news to him. Nevertheless, Lautner was not ready to let it go easily. Recalling the nerve-wracking instance, he shared,
“They called me and said, ‘Thank you for your participation, but we’re recasting you for the rest of the franchise.’”
The Twilight Saga was pretty much his biggest break in Hollywood. Following that, he starred in Abduction in 2011, then in 2013’s Grown Ups. His most recent work was in 2022’s Home Team. Apart from his film career, Lautner seems pretty content with his personal life. Married to Taylor Dome, a nurse and his co-host in The Squeeze on Apple Podcasts, their podcast is quite a thing on social media.
Taylor Lautner worked out to get recast
Despite Twilight’s massive splash at the box office, the production wanted to recast him with a muscular guy. Ready to ace any height to get his role back, Lautner began working out hard-core, bulked up to fit into the character. Only then, the officials considered giving him another try. But still, he had to once again audition for the role, with a bit of help from Kristen Stewart as well. Elaborating on that, the actor shared,
“Thankfully, I started that process the second that we stopped filming the first movie. I’ve read the books, so like, I knew, if I wanna continue playing, I gotta do something. I was ready, so when we got that call, my team was like, ‘have you seen him recently?’”
The star claimed that he had been working out intensely for the past 9 months before shooting for New Moon began. As we all know it, Lautner is the only Jacob Twilight fans ever saw, and probably the best one. But the backstory to it was much different. What if Jacob would have been recast with another actor? Guess we will never know.