February 12th, 2022 / 11 Comments

UPDATED: 12 February 2022

So this is how these photos will appear in the print version

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Circadian Pictures

UPDATED: 11 February 2022

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Here are the original covers without text.

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Thanks @Monsieur_HJ

Original Post 9 February 2022

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Now this is a fabulous way to start Wednesday – new photoshoot, new interview and videos. Daniel Riley interviews Rob for GQ Magazine – pull up a chair, get yourself a drink and immerse yourself in Rob.

The Metamorphosis of Robert Pattinson

The expectation-defying actor is executing his wildest career pivot yet, returning to the world of giant franchise films as the Batman. Yet he can’t help but worry: What is a movie star now, anyway?

He is exceptionally handsome. Wide, wild eyes. Large facial features arranged where a sculptor might have put them in 16th-century Italy. He is, unlike some actors, taller than people suppose. (“A lot of Batman fans are like, He’s tiny, he’s tiny! I’m not fucking tiny!” he says. “I’m, like, a large person. About half the time, I’m trying to get skinnier.”) He has that ability to look convincingly different, by meaningful degrees, in many different things. It’s not just hair and weight. It’s the way he can lower or raise an internal dimmer switch to dial the eyes and mouth along a spectrum from, like, American scuzzbucket to French aristocrat. It permits him to work effectively as both a leading bat and a 12-minute scene-stealer. “He’s a chameleon,” Matt Reeves, director of The Batman, says. “Recently, Rob was telling me that he never plays a character with exactly his voice. The voice is one of his ways in.”

In London today, his natural accent is crisp and his words are prudent. But his laughter is freewheeling and he can’t help but start things off by saying precisely what he feels: “I’m so fucking jet-lagged!” He is underdressed: “It’s cold! Fuck!” And he is feeling his age (35): “I can’t do anything anymore!” The effect is something like: English art dealer after a weeklong fair in Hong Kong. He looks like he was maybe at his shiniest six days ago.

We’re walking through Holland Park, at the base of Notting Hill. Not 18 hours earlier, the plan had been for us to visit the London Zoo, but he’d suddenly thought better of it. “I was talking to my girlfriend”—the model and actress Suki Waterhouse—“last night and she was, like, ‘You know, people don’t really like zoos.…’ I’d been thinking about a metaphorical thing. But then I was thinking that’s very wrong, a sad bear walking in circles.” He’d talked himself out of it.

“I just can’t help it,” he says. “I’ll do it for every single element, every decision, in my life. What is the worst-case scenario for this decision?”

His career to this point has been shaped by a combination of talent, desire, luck, attendant fame, and bold choices. The fame came quickly, with Twilight, the teen-vampire saga that grossed billions of dollars and set Pattinson up for a particular kind of path. The choices—smaller movies with singular filmmakers—came as part of his masterfully planned, decade-long prison break out of that one particular career. “I’m constantly doing risk assessments, which drives everybody crazy, trying to predict every single element that could possibly happen. And then, at the end of it, just being like: Ah, fuck it! I’ll just play a lighthouse keeper who fucks a mermaid! I think this is the right move!”

His reputational swerve away from blockbuster moviemaking had taken such a firm hold in recent years that Reeves, who had been thinking of Pattinson while writing The Batman, wasn’t sure Pattinson would be interested in ever returning from his art-house walkabout. But a little mainstream exposure, by way of The Batman, was just as deliberate a choice as turning away in the first place. Get into the bat cave, bank some gains, then charter a new voyage out into riskier film waters again. It was a plan.

Things got off to an auspicious enough start when shooting began at the end of 2019. “Then I broke my wrist at the beginning of it all, doing a stunt, even before COVID. So the whole first section was trying to keep working out—looking like a penguin. I remember when that seemed like the worst thing that could go wrong.” Soon, of course, there were far greater obstacles brought on by the unprecedented global pandemic, which triggered production shutdowns, including the one precipitated by his own “very embarrassing” positive in September 2020, right as everyone was due back from the first interminable break. The delays ultimately stretched the shoot to 18 months—approximately the total time on set of every other Robert Pattinson movie of late combined.

And yet, when the enormous production was full steam amid the raging pandemic, he felt grateful—and even guilty at times—for having a distraction that demanded every bit of his attention. “I just always had this anchor of Batman. Rather than thinking you’re flotsam to the news, you could feel engaged without being paralyzed by it. Everyone I know, if you had a little momentum going in your career or your life, then stopping, you had to have a reckoning with yourself. Whereas I was so incredibly busy the whole time, doing something that was also super high pressure, by far the hardest thing I’ve ever done…. I was still playing Batman at the end of the day, even though the world might end. But just on the off chance that it doesn’t end…” He puts it another way later: “Even if the world burns down, I’ve just got to get this fucking thing out!”

The set, on the outskirts of London, manifested as a “bubble within a bubble,” he says. “And the nature of the shoot was so kind of insular, always shooting at night, just really dark all the time, and I felt very much alone. Even just being in the suit all the time. You’re not really allowed out of the studio with the suit on, so I barely knew what was going on at all outside.” They built him a little tent off to the side of the set where he could go to decompress. And mostly he would pass the time getting weird in the bat suit. “I’d be in the tent just making ambient electronic music in the suit, looking over the cowl. There’s something about the construction of the cowl that makes it very difficult to read books, so you have to kind of almost lean forward to see out of the cowl.”

He’d said it a few times, and I had no idea what the hell he was talking about. The cowl?

“The mask thing. The bat mask. The cowl!” Hours, days, weeks, months, in the dark, in the suit, in the cowl. “I kept calling it a mask. But I learned, no, no, it’s the cowl.”

Though they finished shooting The Batman in April, Pattinson seems to have still only just mentally emerged from the cave. He laughs maniacally when he recalls those solitary hours in the dark: “I mean, I was really, really, really dead afterward. I just looked at a photo of myself from April and I looked green.”

At one point, as we enter a half-crowded restaurant together, his eyes zero in on a private cubby meant to accommodate a discrete party of diners. He’s told that it’s reserved for another guest. You really want back in a cave, I say, and he laughs a laugh of post-traumatic stress.

“I watched a rough cut of the movie by myself,” he tells me in the not-cave, while eating together. “And the first shot is so jarring from any other Batman movie that it’s just kind of a totally different pace. It was what Matt was saying from the first meeting I had with him: ‘I want to do a ’70s noir detective story, like The Conversation.’ And I kind of assumed that meant the mood board or something, the look of it. But from the first shot, it’s, Oh, this actually is a detective story. And I feel like an idiot, because I didn’t even know that Batman was ‘the world’s greatest detective’; I hadn’t heard that in my life before—but it really plays. Just ’cause there’s a lot of stuff where he’s in amongst the cops. Normally, when you see Batman he arrives and beats people up. But he’s having conversations, and there are emotional scenes between them, which I don’t think have been in any of the other movies.”

I remind Pattinson that the last time he was in GQ, he was just getting started on The Batman, searching for what he called “the gap” in a character that has been played every which way for decades now. I ask if he achieved that.

“I’ve definitely found a little interesting thread. He doesn’t have a playboy persona at all, so he’s kind of a weirdo as Bruce and a weirdo as Batman, and I kept thinking there’s a more nihilistic slant to it. ’Cause, normally, in all the other movies, Bruce goes away, trains, and returns to Gotham believing in himself, thinking, I’m gonna change things here. But in this, it’s sort of implied that he’s had a bit of a breakdown. But this thing he’s doing, it’s not even working. Like, it’s two years into it, and the crime has gotten worse since Bruce started being Batman. The people of Gotham think that he’s just another symptom of how shit everything is. There’s this scene where he’s beating everyone up on this train platform, and I just love that there’s a bit in the script where the guy he’s saving is also just like: Ahh! It’s worse! You’re either being mugged by some gang members, or a monster comes and, like, fucking beats everybody up! The guy has no idea that Batman’s come to save him. It just looks like this werewolf.”

Pattinson laughs hard. “And I kept trying to play into that, I kept trying to think, and I’m going to express this so badly, but there’s this thing with addressing trauma.… All the other stories say the death of his parents is why Bruce becomes Batman, but I was trying to break that down in what I thought was a real way, instead of trying to rationalize it. He’s created this intricate construction for years and years and years, which has culminated in this Batman persona. But it’s not like a healthy thing that he’s done.” It’s like an extended crack-up. “Almost like a drug addiction,” he says. There’s a moment when Alfred asks Bruce what his family would think of him tarnishing the family legacy with his new side hustle. “And Bruce says: ‘This is my family legacy. If I don’t do this, then there’s nothing else for me.’ I always read that as not like, ‘There’s nothing else,’ like, ‘I don’t have a purpose.’ But like: ‘I’m checking out.’ And I think that makes it a lot sadder. Like, it’s a sad movie. It’s kind of about him trying to find some element of hope, in himself, and not just the city. Normally, Bruce never questions his own ability; he questions the city’s ability to change. But I mean, it’s kind of such an insane thing to do: The only way I can live is to dress up as a bat.

DC is the kind of emo comic,” he continues, laughing. “There’s a nihilistic side to it. Even the artwork is really, really different. So, hopefully, there are a lot of sad people in the world.”

Outside, it is cold, dark, and covidly nihilistic (in other words, all vaguely DC), and the weather reminds Pattinson about how his boiler recently needed fixing. “The guy came around the other day,” he says, “and he just randomly started talking about what a DC fan he is. And I’m sitting there facing the other direction, and my girlfriend just keeps continuing the conversation with him. And I’m looking at her like: Shut the fuck up!” He cracks up. “Why are you doing this to me? She was very entertaining. Just talking to an obsessive fan.”

I ask him if he’s anxious at all about how this multiyear endeavor will land. With the superfans. With those who know what a cowl is.

“It all depends. If people like the movie, it’s great. All of it.” But if not, I suggest, you’re answering for people’s anguish. “You never really know until it happens.”

As we walk around Holland Park in the early afternoon—the sky seems to just barely clear the tops of our heads—Pattinson’s eyes scan reflexively for threats. He has been incomprehensibly famous since he was 22, and around every corner for the past 13 years has lurked a fan or a camera or a fan with a camera. The park, on this winter day, seems harmless to these untrained eyes, but Pattinson knows better.

There are some tables outside the park’s coffee shop that seem like a nice enough place to sit and talk, but there are some old ladies chatting close by, and a path that passes near enough to potentially expose him. “Hmm,” he says, “how about…” He leads us in a different direction, toward an abandoned heap of construction materials, where a bench faces some fencing. He says it faux-ponderous: “Let’s just find the most dull area, hidden in a corner.”

I ask him if this is how he experiences the world: as a constant search for dull areas hidden in corners.

“Oh, a hundred percent. Actually, like, if I see a bar that’s empty, and it has no vibe at all, I’m like, Oooo!”

Masks have been a godsend, he says. “It’s funny with all these anti-mask things, because I’m like, I will be wearing a mask for the rest of my life. I think I’ve gained a few years of life from lack of stress. It’s ideal when everyone else is wearing one as well, so it’s not like I’m standing out. It’s incredible.”

Since wrapping The Batman, Pattinson has made his first definitive move behind the camera, pleasantly concealed, having set up a production deal at Warner Bros. He says he’s a “terrible writer” but “molding stuff I find really, really, really satisfying.” First up are a few projects he’s been conceiving for a while, long enough at least that he’s no longer right to star in them, and instead “wants to find an unknown.” He likes HBO Max, with whom he’s working as part of the Warner Bros. deal, because “they’re not afraid,” he says. “I feel like they’re so new and still trying to establish their identity. And there’s space for it.” Development work was under way while he was still filming The Batman: “I’d have my burst of energy in the mornings. I’d go do a workout, and I’d have about 15 minutes before I had to get into the suit. And so I’d literally be, like, for seven minutes on the toilet in the morning when I’d scramble out a stream-of-consciousness email to the writers.”

He describes the thrill of pitching shows like these, which, like acting, requires his own little personal journey to hell: “I seem to only be able to have ideas when there’s an enormous amount of adrenalin. It’s almost like my process of doing anything now. I have to really, really feel like I’ve hit rock bottom. Where right up until the moment I have to perform it’s: Wow, I’m the most empty piece of shit.” He laughs the bat-tent laugh. “You have to feel the pain. And then suddenly it’s like God gives you a little treat: Here’s an idea you’ve never thought of before. Run with this.”

He is a voracious consumer of other people’s work. He reads constantly, watches everything, chisels his taste, his tone, down to the sharpened points he uses to collaborate effectively with filmmakers to fashion bizarrely novel characters. In 2019’s The King, he plunked a campy dauphin right smack in the middle of one of the most unsmirking movies of all time. “I’d been trying to do it seriously, but then I was talking to someone at Dior”—Pattinson is the face of Dior Homme—”and I started mimicking them and doing it in this funnier way,” he says. That is, transporting a figure from French fashion into Shakespeare. “I started doing it as a joke at first, but then I filmed myself and watched it back, and thought this actually kinda works.”

Pattinson threw another knuckleball into 2020’s The Devil All the Time, in which he plays a creepy, corporeal Southern preacher who seduces young parishioners and then gaslights them about their sexual encounters. “But I thought that one was supposed to be a comedy. I remember reading the script and it was so extreme, with such monstrous characters, I was thinking it had to be.” (It wasn’t.)

It is his way of articulating his desire to see something he’s never seen before by doing something he’s never seen before. It is his way of almost, to paraphrase Gandhi or Batman or someone, being the change in movies and movie stardom he wants to see in the world. Here is what my version of a movie star can do—any takers? So far, post-Batman, not really. “It’s ironic that the two movies I thought were the most sure-thing movies you could do, the entire landscape of the industry shifts,” he says. “I really thought that after Batman, I’d be a lot more…” He trails off with genuine dismay. One can feel the heat coming off him from his desire to find a workable blueprint.

“I think I maybe even said it the last time I did an interview with GQ,” he says. “Before Tenet, my agents were like, Yeah, you’re just not on the list for stuff. And I just totally, by fluke, get these two massive movies. And I’m like, Okay, am I on the list now? And they’re like, Yeah, you’re on the list now, but there’s no movies.” By which he means the sort that many moviemakers and movie watchers lament not existing in excess anymore. A movie-star movie for adults. At a scale somewhere between The Lighthouse ($11 million budget) and Tenet ($200 million). “And so it’s strange: The eye of the needle, which I was trying to thread before, gets even smaller now,” he says. “I used to think I had a relatively long-term plan, the one I made after the first Twilight to work with various different directors. But trying to make a plan now when you have to factor in a kind of existential doubt, as well as being like, I’m competing with teenagers for the same part… Well, there are wolves everywhere.”

Against all those personal career concerns, he also wonders aloud about the troubles the wider industry has seizing the center of the culture. “Even when movies try: Oh, let’s do something that captures the zeitgeist, it’s not possible if not everyone’s watching at the same time. Movies used to generate the zeitgeist. And now I just find, opposed to music or fashion, movies can’t keep up with the culture.”

There is an exception, though. A glimmer of something. And it has to do with the way certain filmmakers, he says, seem to identify subcultures and curate more than just movie experiences for those who are tuned to the same frequency. He describes the scene at a screening for the Safdie brothers’ Uncut Gems, “where there were probably 30 people in the audience wearing Elara hats.” Elara Pictures is the Safdies’ production company, but, via fashion-famous people like Timothée Chalamet (a fan) and Emily Ratajkowski (who’s married to one of the producers), also now a sort of inadvertent fashion brand. There are certain filmmakers, Pattinson says, who can transform even smaller films into something much bigger—something that does rub against, or even define, the zeitgeist. Or probably more precisely: a zeitgeist. He saw it with fans at the screenings for The Lighthouse, too: “They were all dressed the same way, like fishermen.” He says director Robert Eggers understood “how you can sort of make this crossover to fashion and music.” Pattinson saw it at a screening for The French Dispatch last year, as well. “I thought it was a themed screening. But all these people, they were just Wes Anderson fans. They just dress like Wes Anderson.”

There, perhaps, is the best explanation, by a series of examples, of what Robert Pattinson has been trying to do with his career choices over the past decade. Don’t just work with directors who make good movies. Work with directors who generate so specific an energy that people want to both watch their films and be part of the subculture that they alone can cultivate. Directors who make people want to literally dress like them. “If you provide a movie which kind of provides an entire culture with it,” Pattinson says, “I think people really, really like that, and really respond to it.”

Pattinson is, it becomes clearer with each passing movie-promo cycle, one of those authentically weird, boundlessly energetic, deceptively chaotic creative types who are mixed up in 10,000 things while projecting a false sense of passivity. Here’s Pattinson, not much of a sports fan himself, romanticizing his friends’ soccer fandom: “There’s just something so lovely about having something every single Sunday, where it’s like, This is what I’m doing. Rather than just, when anybody asks me, What are your hobbies? I’m like: Fucking fretting. Worrying about the future.”

He says the last part in a sort of comic accent. And then he laughs. The sentiment—the anxiety, the uncertainty of what the world holds for him and anyone—feels almost too real, like sad eyes shining from behind the bat cowl. It reminds me of what Matt Reeves said about Pattinson: that he’s never played a role with his own voice, that the voice is his way into different people. Pattinson tells me that sometimes he’ll just make something up in an interview, in order to say anything at all—and that it has at times come back to bite him (for instance, comments he made years ago about not washing his hair that have followed him to this day). It all gets a little slippery when someone tells you they sometimes deliberately lie. But it feels like it adds up with several of the other stories Pattinson shares with me. There are some things that are honest, there are some things that are constructed, and in between there are just a bunch of roles Pattinson’s playing besides a movie star and celebrity. Among them:

Porn peddler (formerly). He’d steal the magazines from a local newsstand and sell them to classmates for a handsome profit. It got him expelled from his first prep school. The entrepreneurial spirit was organic, irrepressible.

Sham drug dealer (formerly). “I haven’t thought about this in years, but during secondary school my first proper-ish kind of girlfriend was a few years above me, and I always wanted to hang out with the cool kids, who were in the oldest year. And some of us decided that I’d pretend that I was importing drugs. But I didn’t even know what drugs looked like. So I had this idea I’d get floppy disks, open up the floppy disk, pour this kind of powder stuff inside, and then spray it with, like, some kind of cleaning product so that it’d smell chemical-y, and seal all of it in. I bought, like, 40 floppy disks, and then I’d show it to kids who were probably 15 or 16, and I’d be like: Yeah, I’m importing drugs in floppy discs.” He says it like a real scumbag. “And everybody believed me. And I kind of got this reputation that: This kid is crazy. He’s a drug dealer! Like: Want to try some? Some sawdust with Febreze on it?”

Rap pirate (formerly). He was the only one he knew who had Noreaga albums from overseas. He and his friend would take the Noreaga lyrics, transpose their voices in a music program he had, and then send “their” raps to English hip-hop DJ Tim Westwood to try to get them on his show. “My mum would be coming into the room, and we’d be saying other people’s lyrics verbatim, thinking no one would ever find out.”

Skateboard impostor (formerly). “I could not actually skateboard, but try as hard as I could, and I’d practice by myself, and then literally anytime it was time to do anything, I was terrified of hurting myself, so I’d just sit there, dragging the skateboard around. Rolling it back and forth, hit it with things, and kind of put little gashes into it, so that it looked like I’d been riding it. But I never got on it ever.”

Designer of chairs (ongoing). He used to have a studio in London. But now he just makes little chairs out of clay, little maquettes, takes pictures of them, and then sends them to a designer he knows who helps get them built. The first one, “an insane sofa,” is inbound soon. He is consumed by chairs. Thinks about them incessantly. When it came time to design the logo for his production company, he just kept sending people pictures of chairs.

Photographer (ongoing). And not just of the maquettes of his chairs. He was in a store recently, looking for a new camera, and scanning the internet to find out what kind photographer Daniel Arnold uses. “I ended up just standing there looking at a load of his photographs,” he says, “and was ultimately like, it has nothing to do with the camera, does it? Same as anything, you can train yourself to see situations in a different way—to start to see surreality everywhere around you.”

Handheld pasta hustler (ongoing, for now). Close readers of GQ may remember that, two years ago, Pattinson tried to demonstrate his concept for a portable pasta snack via Zoom interview, to devastating results. The internet received the effort as a stunt, or at least as a knowing performance of ineptitude. “But I was fully, actually trying to make that pasta,” he says. “Like I was literally in talks with frozen-food factories, and hoped that that article would be the proof of concept. My manager was like: Is this really what you want to do? You want your face on handheld pasta? You know you’ve got to go to Walmart and really sell it, for potentially very little return.” He laughs as though it were someone else’s idea. “And there was a part of me that was, like: Is there a world where this works?”

All of which is to say: Pattinson seems to have long been good at being at least two things at once. An authentic singular somebody to his core. But also someone very good at pretending to be somebody else.

When he started auditioning, anytime he’d introduce himself as English while trying out for an American role, the casting agents would act concerned. “They’d always question it: ‘We’re worried about the accent…’ ” he says. “So I used to always come in as a different person, an American. I’d say, ‘Hi, I’m from Michigan.’ But then I was doing an audition for Transformers 2, right after Twilight had come out”—in other words, precisely the moment that Pattinson became a globally famous actor—“and I went in as some guy from Denver. And they called my agent and were like, ‘What’s wrong with him? Why was he doing an improv? A really boring improv?’ ”

And so he started auditioning as Rob, for better or worse. “If I hadn’t gotten really lucky,” he says, “and had instead been forced to audition all these years, I wouldn’t have a career at all. I’m so bad it.” He has vivid memories of having his lunch handed to him by the other actors his age. “Eddie Redmayne and Andrew Garfield were so fucking good at auditioning, it’s just unbelievable. You’d see them, and then if you were waiting outside, you would literally hear casting directors inside going, Oh, my God! Oh, my God! And you’d be like, Fucking hell, who’s inside? And Eddie would come out and be like: Hey, mate. I’d be doing something thinking it was a comedy, and suddenly hear these heaving sobs. I’m thinking, Who has managed to get a sob out of this?! And then fucking Eddie comes out, goddamnit.”

But then all of a sudden, the days of sleeping on his agent’s couch in L.A. were through. “She just told me she still has my suitcase,” he says, “filled with my dirty laundry from back then. In her garage, fossilized.”

Post-Twilight, Pattinson has worked with David Cronenberg, Werner Herzog, James Gray, Claire Denis. But no match has seemed quite as electrified as the one with Josh and Benny Safdie, with whom he made 2017’s Good Time: “They’re very kind of anarchic. But it’s not out of control at all. They’re some of the only directors I’ve worked with who thrive on the chaos but where they’re also always just in control of the car.”

The Safdie brothers seem to relish this kind of discomfort. Their movies are powered by the high blood pressure of wrong decisions and the worst-case scenario. And though Pattinson’s risk-assessment monitor would suggest that he avoid the kids on the block who like to play near fallen power lines, Pattinson is, naturally, thrilled by the proximity: “They’re so fun, so funny, so brave. That’s the main thing that I kind of like to gravitate toward. It’s scary when you’re putting out a movie now. Even if no one sees it, you can still get canceled for it.”

The air at the rare altitude of Pattinson’s celebrity can be disorienting. “It can be fucking scary,” he says. “People think you have an army kind of protecting you, but you really don’t. You’re on your own. You have to have crazy amounts of, I guess it’s some kind of mental fortitude. Obviously, it’s this incredible life. But like anything, if you can’t turn it off.… Even the people closest to you assume that your life is probably more like the way it’s told in a magazine. Even my relatives. But then again, that’s the whole point of it: to capture people’s imaginations.”

We move around quite a bit during the afternoon, from one zone of safe-seeming inactivity to another. His eyes really do appear to read the world like a thermal scanner. A dismal bench to an empty restroom, to a vacant path through a random park. And still, there’s a guy waiting for us with a camera. Mask up, Pattinson is undeterred. We walk past some children playing soccer and I ask him if ever harbored youthful delusions of football grandeur.

“The opposite. I still have the same terror when I’m walking past little kids, and the football rips into the path. I just have this terror of passing it back, and I go straight back to being a 10-year-old, and kicking it in the wrong direction. People being like: Wow! What an idiot! Eventually, I’m probably gonna have a child. So I’ve started training myself so that I can be somewhat…so that I can play soccer with a three-year-old.”

He feels himself getting older by the instant. “Thirty-five was definitely the year when things changed. I really stretched out my adolescence to about 34,” he says as we jump into a black taxi and start passing through Notting Hill. “I remember a few years ago, I was talking to my friend on some pretty street up this way. Years ago, I always thought it was so chichi, and now it just seems so nice. I was like, I wonder what changed about the area?…”

Growing older, while being closer, he’s starting to see his family in new ways, the “delineation between the personality types” in his parents, his father (the introvert, the cynic, the worrier) at one end of the spectrum and his mother (the extrovert, the laugher, the emotionally accessible one) at the other, and his sitting in the middle of it, or, really, as he clarifies, “swinging from one to the other. The things that used to drive me crazy about my dad, being contrarian all the time, constantly playing devil’s advocate—I’m drifting that way.”

Back home, closer to family, Pattinson seems to be setting upon some new stage of his life and career. Despite making what could be characterized as countless right decisions, they seem to have amounted to no obvious path forward. Which is a fact of life-and-career that plants Robert Pattinson firmly in his micro-generation. He exists in that highly specific age range of people (that is, those born in the mid-’80s) who grew up to see the Old Way—saw it work from the lowest rung, from the entry level—before watching their chosen industry disassemble for the past decade, as they sort of scrambled up a heap of old rubble and new growth to reach the top of…what exactly? Many people his age, in many different professional capacities, will have encountered this existential emoji shrug and feel like barfing. Pattinson is just old enough to have really seen up close the thing he wanted—he made a plan—only to be confronted, when it was his turn, with the now obvious fact that absolutely no one has a clue what comes next. It’s thrilling. It’s terrifying. It’s what’s so hauntingly familiar about his nagging career sentiments: “I really thought that after Batman, I’d be a lot more…”

Not long ago, he was having a conversation with his manager about his paralysis and indecision about what to do next on every front—including his next movie. “I said, ‘I don’t want to make a mistake on what to do next.’ And then my manager’s like, ‘I understand this, but the longer you wait, you’re not going to have a movie come out until 2024. And by then, no one will give a shit what you’re doing.’ It’s the strangest thing that up until three years ago, we kind of sort of had basically the same traditional career route-ish. If everything went well, it still sort of existed-ish. And now it’s like: What on earth is the direction to go in?

“You just have to kind of think: Well, my plan is maybe a miracle will happen and everything will be fine. Which is what I think everyone has been thinking for two years. Just: Uhhh, I guess the plan is to just hope?”

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  • PM
    Posted on February 09, 2022

    He will make history playing both the Batman and the Joker, you watch! Only he can pull of wearing jewelry the size of a cycle chain.

    Maria, here is the full video if you want to link up in your post:


  • Maria
    Posted on February 09, 2022

    Thanks PM – I had limited time before getting to work this morning.

  • PM
    Posted on February 09, 2022

    Yep, I guessed as much. And work?! what is that? Pretty distracted today. 🙂 That video is great though, he is relaxed and happy like he was in that other video I like where he was talking about his movie 'Life'.

  • sue
    Posted on February 09, 2022

    OMG – a 24 minute video to greet me this morning? Alleluia!!! I haven't even watched it yet, I was too mesmerised by the photos. Definitely giving off some Joker vibes. I will say, those colours in that shoot are magnificent! Okay, the water is boiled, time to sit back with my cuppa and enjoy Mr Pattinson…… I'm so excited!

  • sue
    Posted on February 09, 2022

    Okay, I can't get past Rob saying Hufflepuff!!! I've just rewatched/relistened about 10 times!!

  • sue
    Posted on February 09, 2022

    Thanks Maria. One hour and thirty five minutes spent on just ONE POST this morning! I think that might just be a record for me. Between the photos, the videos and the GQ article, I really had no hope of getting out alive! LOL What a brilliant way to start the day.

  • Maria
    Posted on February 09, 2022

    It's days like this I wish I had more time before leaving for work. I will enjoy the vid tonight – something to definitely look forward too!

  • PM
    Posted on February 09, 2022

    Maria, you are on the other end of the world and the excitement started well before you were awake on here. I was like, wake up, Maria!

    I savored the article but thought it was a bit tame compared to his previous ones. Maybe he is growing old, 😉 Still I applaud him for things like this "First up are a few projects he’s been conceiving for a while, long enough at least that he’s no longer right to star in them, and instead “wants to find an unknown.” ", for giving a chance to new people instead of playing it safe with known entities.

    And this from the author of the article is a good observation. We like his authenticity — "An authentic singular somebody to his core. But also someone very good at pretending to be somebody else."

  • Maria
    Posted on February 09, 2022

    I read the article on bus on way to work this morning. I agree re the observation of the journo. Rob's always playing someone else – those close to him are the luckiest that know the real Rob. Not that I think it's too far from what we see. I was once told by Oliver Irving (Director of How to Be) that Rob was very similar in character to his character "Art". I like to think that's very true.

  • Maria
    Posted on February 09, 2022

    hahaha – Rob gold.

  • PM
    Posted on February 10, 2022

    Agree. "Art" may have been an extreme version of Rob at that time, I think. In the video, he describes what it was like before Twilight and at about the time he may have filmed How To Be, starts @1:45, which sounds like "Art" without the extremes. Even in this article he says something about 'worrying about the future' but one would think he got made when Twilight happened, at least money-wise and he could relax a bit. It is fascinating to see that is not what his personality is.

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