LOS ANGELES — In the best-selling novel "Twilight," the residents of Forks, Washington, look at the Cullen family as charming, eccentric, alluring — and quite possibly supernatural. Now, a legion of die-hard fans can finally look at them as well.
Peter Facinelli ("Six Feet Under"), Elizabeth Reaser ("Grey's Anatomy"), Jackson Rathbone ("The O.C."), Ashley Greene ("King of California") and Kellan Lutz ("Stick It"), alongside the previously revealed Nikki Reed and Robert Pattinson, have been confirmed by MTV News as the stars who will make up [article id="1581592"]Forks' first family[/article]. [article id="1581799"]Click here to see the group in costume in the the first three images revealed from the film[/article], which is currently shooting in the Portland, Oregon, area.
(Are you happy with the casting or do the makers of "Twilight" have it all wrong? Weigh in on the MTV Movies Blog.)
"Finding [seven] talented actors who can portray supernaturally beautiful, talented vampires of the sort Stephenie Meyer has created and her fans have come to know and love was not an easy task," Erik Feig, Summit Entertaiment's president of production, said in a statement announcing the casting. "But we are happy to say we have found our perfect Cullen family."
Facinelli will portray Carlisle, a 400-year-old vampire who has learned to suppress his bloodlust through the consumption of animal blood. The educated and charismatic man has spent his time in Forks as the small town's beloved physician, and seems eternally frozen as a handsome 23-year-old. On the surface, he's a family man alongside loving wife Esme and children Rosalie, Edward, Emmett, Alice and Jasper. Thanks to a truce with the nearby Quileute Indian tribe, Carlisle has managed to keep his family in Forks with relative peace.
The 32-year-old Reaser has been cast as Esme, the mother of the family who was forever frozen at age 26 after Carlisle changed her during a suicide attempt. Bothered by the fact that she can no longer conceive children (it was the loss of her child that made her try to end her life), Esme serves as a mother figure to the Cullen siblings and will eventually become a de facto vampire-in-law to Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart).
Rathbone, a hunky 23-year-old actor, will portray Jasper Hale, the former Confederate Army soldier who was turned into a vampire at age 20. As part of their cover, the Cullens tell outsiders that Jasper is Rosalie's twin brother, and that he is a foster child to Esme and Carlisle. In truth, he is part of the Cullen coven, and pledged eternally to his "stepsister" Alice. More than 6 feet tall with pale skin, gold eyes and many battle wounds, he is described in Meyer's novels as a handsome, intimidating soul.
Ashley Greene will play Jasper's eternal love. Alice is described in the books as physically petite, with spiky black hair and a manner of carrying herself that almost suggests a ballerina's grace. She and Jasper are notoriously protective of each other and loyal to the Cullen clan.
Finally, Kellan Lutz has landed the role of Emmett McCarty Cullen, another decades-old vampire who was turned at the tender age of 20. Bitten by Carlisle after he was mauled by a bear in the Tennessee mountains in 1935 and carried more than a hundred miles by his eventual true love Rosalie (Reed), he is the tallest and perhaps most intimidating of the Cullens. He and Rosalie have married several times over the years and sometimes live away from the others for a time while they pose as newlyweds.
The first "Twilight" film will not only introduce the vampire clan, but also the romance between Bella and Edward Cullen, painted as an undeniable attraction that can't be stopped even by the revelations about the origins of the "teen boy" and his family. When Edward's nemesis, a vampire named James (Cam Gigandet), sets his sights on Bella, the first flick will set the stage for an intended franchise, along with the already-published novels "New Moon" and "Eclipse."
A huge cultural phenomenon for teens and adults alike, "Twilight" has sold more than 5 million copies worldwide. The recent release of "Eclipse" debuted at #1 on the USA Today best-seller list, unseating the latest Harry Potter novel. The "Twilight" film will continue principal photography for the next few months, targeting a late 2008 release.
Check out everything we've got on "Twilight."
For breaking news, celebrity columns, humor and more — updated around the clock — visit MTVMoviesBlog.com.