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Discuss: Which 'Twilight' Stars Will Still Have Careers Once The Franchise Ends?

Photo of Oliver Lyttelton By Oliver Lyttelton | The Playlist November 14, 2012 at 11:01AM

And so they face the final curtain. This week "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Pt. 2," the fifth film in the franchise based on Stephenie Meyer's best-selling young-adult vampire novels, will hit theaters (read our review here). And while Lionsgate and Summit are hoping to extend the life of their cash cow, for the moment this movie marks the end of the franchise and the story of star-crossed lovers Edward Cullen and Bella Swann.
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Ashley Greene
Ashley Greene
Before "Twilight": Very little. Greene had cropped up in small TV roles on things like "Punk'd," "Crossing Jordan" and "Shark," but mostly in tiny walk-on roles, and her film roles were even less notable, the biggest being "McDonald's customer" in the forgotten Michael Douglas vehicle "King Of California."
Chances Of Success After "Twilight": Patchy. Greene's been fairly busy in between "Twilight" entries, mostly in the indie world. But neither "Shrink," "Skateland" or "Butter" ever really took off, and while her performances were generally deemed to be competent, no one was exactly raving about them either. This year has seen her in more studio fare, but again, there were few fans of either the Miley Cyrus vehicle "LOL" or the long-delayed ghost tale "The Apparition," both films essentially disappearing at the box office. Like Lautner, some of the projects she was attached to lead -- indie "The Boom Boom Room" with Christopher Walken, and the Dickens reboot "Olivia Twisted" -- never came together, and she's started to drift into TV. She had a small arc on the short-lived "Pan Am," and starred with Anthony LaPaglia and Emilie de Ravin on primetime soap pilot "Americana," which ultimately wasn't picked up by ABC. She is leading the intriguing "CBGB," with Alan Rickman, Mickey Sumner and Malin Akerman, but if that doesn't take off, her future may lie on the small screen, at least for the moment.

Kellan Lutz
Kellan Lutz
Before "Twilight": The amazingly-named Kellan Lutz, who plays Emmett, another of the Cullen clan, was one of the more successful of the "Twilight" cast before the films got going, at least in terms of his credits. The actor had cropped up in things like "CSI," "90210" and "Six Feet Under," and had a number of teen-based movie credits in films such as "Prom Night," "Stick It" and "Accepted." And shortly before the first movie hit, he was in a minor but significant role in David Simon's HBO miniseries "Generation Kill," which at least suggests he might be a little more than a pretty face.
Chances Of Success After "Twilight": If he lowers his expectations a little, he might be OK. Lutz recently invited mockery by saying in an interview "“I want to act for the rest of my life. I’ll win an Oscar one day, but I’m in no rush to get there. I don’t care if that takes me 50 years, and I’m old. I just love what I do.” Still, he's done alright outside the "Twilight" franchise so far, with action-heavy parts in "Immortals" and the DTV "Arena," leading Dermot Mulroney's rom-com "Love Wedding Marriage," and appearing in the "Nightmare On Elm Street" remake. He's even well-known enough to have played himself the other week on "30 Rock" (who could forget that name?). We're not sure how well his upcoming projects (dodgy-looking satire "Syrup," drug-dealing drama "Kid Cannabis," Indonesian actioner "Java Heat" with Mickey Rourke, and that dreadful-looking mo-cap "Tarzan" movie) bode for his career, but if he forgets about that Oscar and is happy headlining straight-to-VOD actioners, he could be set for a long and busy career.

Nikki Reed
Nikki Reed
Before "Twilight": Reed kicked off her career with something that few of her castmates can compete with: genuine bona fide acclaim. When she was only 14, Reed teamed up with family friend Catherine Hardwicke to co-write a screenplay called "Thirteen," about the troubled life of a girl in her early teens, based on Reed's own experiences. She ended up co-starring in the film (with Evan Rachel Wood), which became a sensation at Sundance, and won Holly Hunter a supporting actress Oscar nomination. As a result, Reed became a fairly in-demand actress, reuniting with Hardwicke on "Lords of Dogtown," recurring on "The O.C." and turning up in other indies like "American Gun" and "Mini's First Time." Things quieted down for a while, until Hardwicke got the gig to direct the first "Twilight," and cast Reed as Edward's adopted sister Rosalie.
Chances Of Success After "Twilight": Decent. Not much of her work while the franchise was in progress is worth mentioning, as most of her roles were in Lifetime-movie-sounding titles like "Familiar Strangers," "Awaken The Night," "Privileged" and "Chain Letter," with her most recent role being the straight-to-video Bruce Willis/Forest Whitaker picture "Catch .44." And some of the stuff that's on the way sounds like it's cut from the same cloth, including a reunion with Whitaker, along with Ray Liotta, in the thriller "Pawn," and something called "Snap," which is, believe it or not, "a psychological thriller set in the world of underground dubstep." Starring Jason Priestley. Amazing. Despite that, she also has movies on the way that people might actually see. She'll star in the heist picture "Empire State," with Dwayne Johnson and Liam Hemsworth, and perhaps even more crucially, she's one of the leads of "In Your Eyes," a little indie supernatural romance co-starring Zoe Kazan that happens to be written by a little-known guy called Joss Whedon. If she can find more projects more like the latter two, she might end up sticking around. After all, her 'Thirteen" performance showed she's got real talent.

Jackson Rathbone
Jackson Rathbone
Before "Twilight": The 28-year-old Rathbone kicked off his career as a presenter on the Disney Channel before moving into teen roles on shows like "The O.C." and the short-lived "Beautiful People" that led him to be cast as adopted Cullen child Jasper in the "Twilight" series.
Chances Of Success After "Twilight": Pretty slim, at least as an actor. Rathbone's part in the series has never exactly given him a real showcase, and his one big role outside of the franchise, in M. Night Shyamalan's "The Last Airbender," was something of a washout. He's had some appearances on TV and in barely-seen indies, but not much of note. And his list of upcoming credits include destined-for-DTV titles like "Cowgirls 'n Angels," "Rodeo Drive Diva" and something called "DaZe: Vol. Too - NonSeNse," which might be the single worst title in cinema history. Perhaps his greatest hope is legal drama "Live at the Foxes Den," which has Elliot Gould among the cast, but we wouldn't hold our breath for that one. Still, Rathbone has a side-career as musician in the band 100 Monkeys, so he may just be happy doing that. And we suppose that TV might come calling for him at some stage.

Anna Kendrick
Anna Kendrick
Before "Twilight": A Tony nominee by the age of 13 for her role in the Broadway revival of "High Society," Kendrick appeared in the indie musical "Camp" as her screen debut at 18, and four years later, made a real impression in the Sundance favorite "Rocket Science." After a detour via failed Hugh Jackman pilot "Viva Laughlin," she bagged the part of Bella's best friend Jessica in the first "Twilight" movie.
Chances Of Success After "Twilight": In case you haven't noticed, Kendrick (who actually bowed out of the series with the last film, "Breaking Dawn Pt. 1") is the most successful graduate of the franchise, and has been since before even the second movie was released. The actress gave one of the few performances in the series that had a pulse, and just over a year after the release of the first movie, was an Oscar nominee for her great performance in Jason Reitman's "Up In The Air." And she hasn't really looked back since. First she cropped up in "Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World," then she gave a terrific supporting turn in "50/50" last year, and she's had a pretty impressive 2012. She showed a new side to her talents in cop drama "End Of Watch," has a brief role in the ensemble of Robert Redford's "The Company You Keep," contributed a strong vocal turn in "ParaNorman," and led sleeper hit musical comedy "Pitch Perfect," the success of which seems to have put her on the brink of being a bona fide A-lister. Her dance card for 2013 is pretty diverse, with apocalyptic comedy "Rapturepalooza," Joe Swanberg's "Drinking Buddies," and twentysomething angst-com "Get A Job" all lined up, but further success awaits with the music world. She's headlining the stage adaptation "The Next Five Years," and recently participated in a table read for Rob Marshall's "Into The Woods." The world is her oyster, and her presence in "Twilight" is basically already forgotten.

This article is related to: Features, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2, Twilight Saga, Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart, Taylor Lautner, Kellan Lutz, Nikki Reed, Anna Kendrick, Jackson Rathbone, Ashley Greene


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