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Once upon a time, the Twilight book series was the equivalent of literary crack for impressionable tweens, fantasizing about the forbidden love between vampire and delectable human.
Fast forward a couple years, and Twilight mania has swept the nation in cinematic form, allowing fans to finally assign faces to their beloved Edward Cullen and Bella Swan. Pandemonium continues to gain steam as fans young and old indulge their thirst for blood and romance and the excitement will surely be at an alltime high with the latest installment of the series, New Moon, set for release this November. But while veteran heartthrobs Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart have been at the forefront of the Twilight craze, stars like Ashley Greene, better known as the psychic, pixie-like vampire Alice Cullen in the film series, are still adapting to newfound fame. In fact, Greene, a Jacksonville native, was practically a newbie to the scene before landing the role that changed her life. Even our photo shoot, held at West Hollywood’s Coco de Ville / STK, was the starlet’s very first cover shoot. After a day spent amidst designer gowns, camera crews and the comic relief of Greene’s adorable pup, Marlo, Greene took a moment to come up for air and catch us up on life spent in Twilight.
Dress by Rafael Cennamo; Crystal earrings, wood cuff & purple ring by Swarovski;
Square ring by Virgins, Saints & Angels
Pearl rings by Lani Bleu Designs
Could you tell us about the new Twilight movie, New Moon?
It was fun for me because it was a little more in-depth for Alice’s character. It’s more about the angst part of it than the love story as far as Edward and Bella. Edward leaves Bella, so she kind of falls into a depression and gets close to Jacob, and discovers a couple more crazy things about the town. We had a blast filming. We got to go to Italy, which was amazing. It was a couple of us who got to go to Italy, and I was included. It was coming back to the people we got really close to in the movie before so it was like a little reunion. And Chris Weitz directed it, and he was incredible. I feel like the set was so chill and really comfortable, and it seemed like it was all very planned out and very put together so we weren’t going crazy and stressing out. I’m excited to see it all put together. I’m really confident that it will be good.
What was it like reuniting with the Twilight cast again?
Coming back to the second one was really great because we already had this relationship so we got to build on top of that. I feel like I was really close with a couple of people and then on the second one, I got close with a couple of different people, so it’s been really fun.
What was the process of being cast for the role of Alice? Were you familiar with the book series beforehand?
It was a really long, tedious process. I hadn’t read the books, but I read them because they wouldn’t release the script or breakdown. My manager told me to go into the audition and to do a good job and not to mess up because the casting directors were sticklers. So, I was like, “How am I supposed to do a good job? I don’t even know what I’m supposed to be playing!” I originally auditioned for Bella, and so I read the first book and kind of fell in love with it. I went in and auditioned and actually they called me back in and said, “No, you’re not right for Bella,” so I was bummed, and then they brought me back for Alice. I worked more on it – that was all I did for a couple of days before I went in. I came in probably like five times before I actually got the role – and then I went home for Christmas and literally just had to wait and wait. I thought that I didn’t get it again, and then I got the call that I was Alice and I freaked out and called my dad and mom.
Dress by Itsola; Cuff, earrings & necklace by Robindira Unsworth;
Gold ring by Skinny; Pink cocktail ring by Guy & Eva
Did you have any idea, going into it, that it would have this much fan appeal? Did you feel any pressure to deliver, or did that just develop over the course of making the film and its release?
I did because it was really my first film where I had a bigger part and was a studio thing – I was nervous. I think I was more nervous than most of the cast because it was my first thing. It definitely kept building and turned into kind of a different type of nervousness. We knew that it was probably going to go to theaters because so
many people love the books, and in the course of filming we realized that it probably wasn’t just going to go to theaters, it was going to do quite well. Then [the film] opened really, really huge, which was incredible.
Do you tend to have more guy fans or more girl “tween” fans?
I definitely get more girls. There’s been guys – I’m used to the girls, so with the guys I’m kind of awkward, I feel like. But, some of them are really sweet.
Do you prefer that people come up to you and say something when you’re recognized? That’s something fans always wonder.
Before, it was just like one or two people and I totally would rather them come up [to me] because I think it’s really sweet. They say hello and I go back to what I’m doing and it’s better than having them just stare the whole time because then you feel like you’re being watched and then you’re not really comfortable. But, it’s getting to be more and more people, so I don’t know. If everyone wants to come up and say hello… I guess I’m going to leave it up to them. It’s working fine now. I’m not going mess up the process.
What do you make of this Robert Pattinson craze? It’s starting to get to the point where the pandemonium is putting him in dangerous situations. What’s your take on that?
It’s sad for Rob! It’s a hard thing because we absolutely adore our fans, and he does too, and they helped us get to where we are now so you have to be thankful for that. I applaud him – with my fan encounters, there’s a process. It’s kind of like this chisel effect where there’s one and then it’s two and then it’s five, so I was kind of able to ace it. But he got slapped with 25,000 screaming girls so I definitely think he’s taking it in stride. They love him so much and I know they don’t want to hurt him, but people just don’t realize that when they’re that many people coming with a force, it can be very dangerous sometimes.
Now that you are in the public eye, how do you deal with people speculating about your personal life all the time?
It’s kind of laughable because it’s amazing that people are so intrigued by who I have lunch with and whatnot. This is my thing: If I was in a relationship with someone that I really cared about, it would upset me if they speculated something about me and someone else because that other person has to read it. That’s the part which I haven’t encountered yet because I’m not in a relationship, but I’m just waiting for it – and then I’m sure I’ll hate it. It’s something I have to get used to, I guess. It’s all apart of this job. It’s like the little fine print of dating me – “You will now be thrown into this Twilight whirlwind.” The fans embrace everything that we do, so if I started dating some guy they would probably embrace him too.
How has it been with the other Twilight castmates? Is there anyone on set that you happen to be closer with?
Kellan [Lutz] and I are very close. I have different relationships with different people – and it’s really great, I kind of get the best of everything. Rachelle [Lefevre] and I have this, like, zest for life. She and I can just go and have a glass of wine and unwind, and we work out together and stuff like that so she and I have that kind of relationship – I think we’re both easygoing, fun people. Kristen [Stewart] and I recently got closer. I feel like in the first film, we were friends, but with our schedule we were never in the same place at the same time. So, with the second one, it was more intimate as far as the amount of people involved. After the first week or two of production, it was just me, Kristen, Rob and Taylor [Lautner], and then Rachelle was there for a little bit. Taylor’s super, super sweet, and Jackson [Rathbone], I adore. I love them all. They’re great.
Do you ever worry about being always thought of as Alice Cullen when you go off to make your other film projects? What kind of other projects are you hoping to do?
Maybe Kristen and Rob will kind of have a little bit more of a shadow behind them that always links them to Twilight, but Alice is a vampire, yes, but she has this human heart. She’s really lovable and really likable, sort of
like the best friend, and so I think that might help me in the other films. I think the fans already love me and love Alice. I think it’s a positive. I don’t think I’m going to be pigeonholed. If I always played the hot, stupid chick, then I might be pigeonholed as that. I get to kind of choose my films, which hopefully I will choose wisely and
build off of that versus pissing the fans off. I want to do an action film just because there’s already a bit of action in Twilight, and when I did it I absolutely took to it and loved it.
When we see these other film series based off of books, like Harry Potter, that have gone on and on with multiple installments of the films – is that now something that you’re totally prepared to take on?
Yeah. I know Harry Potter went on – it’s still going on – for a really long time. These kids basically grew up in these films. But with ours, we can’t age, so that’s the big difference. We have to get [the films] done. We filmed the second one and we’re about to jump into the third. I’m not sure about the fourth one yet – but I’m assuming that we’re going to get that one done in a timely manner as well. I think we’ll film them, and then how they want to release them is up to their discretion. At least we’ll be able to have this Twilight force behind us for a while, but I think the filming will be done fairly soon. So, we’ll get to have the best of both worlds because we’ll actually be free to film other projects in between. That’s the other thing that I think is huge with Twilight – usually people don’t have the time or are not allowed to contractually do other films, but they’re letting us do other films in between.
When you’re not filming, what do you do for fun?
I definitely try to make it home. I actually have my family fly out, and I have a couple of Florida friends fly out sometimes, and then I have a best friend or two in L.A. I just try hanging out and spending time with my friends – I try and live a normal lifestyle.
What would be your ideal Saturday night?
Me and my friends are really big on doing game nights. We just grab a couple of games and sometimes we order in or sometimes we just get a bunch of cheese and crackers and stuff like that or cook dinner, and just hang out and play games.
By Jillian Gordon
Photos by Bobby Quillard
Location: Coco de Ville / STK, West Hollywood
Styling by April Steiner for Exclusive Artists Management
Hair by Ian James for The Wall Group
Makeup by Vanessa Scali for Tracey Mattingly
Check out these exclusive behind-the-scenes photos from our October 2009 cover shoot with Ashley Greene. Watch the video of E! Daily 10 reporter Debbie Matenopoulous interviewing Ashley on the set of our cover shoot. Plus, the lucky winner of our fan contest got to hang out on set and enjoy all the action!
Ashley Greene peruses the photo shoot accessories
Ashley Greene poses for our October cover
E!'s Daily 10 reporter Debbie Matenopoulos