Kimberly Sherman, Twilight Parents Examiner, had the opportunity to talk with How To Be director, Oliver Irving. Click here to read the complete interview.
How was Robert Pattinson chosen for the role of Art? Did his musical ability play a role in his casting?
We found him after a year and a half’s worth of casting calls. He just seemed the right person for the job. He was interesting to look at – but down to earth enough to play the part. He really seemed to “get it” – he knew people like the characters in the script, and understood the main character ‘ART’. Not having gone through drama school, Rob’s acting and response to direction fit in well with other main cast members who were not trained actors either. Rob actually underplayed his musical ability in the auditions, as he knew the character was meant to be rough around the edges when it comes to musical ability – but it actually was invaluable in the end that he understood the music references and had the technical ability to pull off what we were asking from him.
How much of the film tour’s success do you attribute to Pattinson?
A massive amount – he brought a huge audience to our film which is all you can ask of a lead star. I think also the amount of festivals we had played up until that point and the strength of support from our fans really made it all possible.
Describe Robert Pattinson’s look in How to Be- was it difficult to play down his striking features? Was the choice of hairstyle and clothing planned before his casting or customized to fit him?
Yeah, it was funny, the Twilight team had a very different agenda – whilst they were looking for the most perfect styling and angles to make Rob look awesome, we put him in the most ill-fitting, awkward clothes, and almost sought out the most unflattering angles. All the costumes where customized to fit him – we also asked him to bring in clothes of his own which we could mix into his wardrobe – we wanted the clothes to feel like his own and look comfortable on him. He remarked afterwards in a Q&A that half the clothes he wore in the film were his already and half the clothes he kept to wear afterwards. His hairstyle was the result of me asking him not to cut his hair until the shoot to see what we came up with – and that was it – perfect!
Were you familiar with Rob, or had you heard of him before he was cast?
No – he told me he was in a Harry Potter movie but made it seem like a small part. After the first audition I was sure he could be good, so checked him out online and realized he had a huge fan base already. Another call back or two to doubly make sure we had our man, and we were set.