Catherine Hardwicke: ‘Thank the Lord’ I Walked Away From ‘Twilight’

Kimberly French/2011 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc

She denies Summit Entertainment “fired” her: “In my contract, I had the first right of refusal.”

In a new Newsweek profile, Catherine Hardwicke (whose vamped up version of Little Red Riding Hood hit screens March 11)  says she has no regrets about walking away from the mega-successful Twilight franchise and dismisses a blog report that Summit Entertainment fired her.

“I couldn’t even be fired, that’s what’s so funny,” she says. “In my contract, I had the first right of refusal.” 
She says she said no to New Moon, the film’s second installment, because the studio wanted to rush it out.  “I do not regret it at all, thank the Lord,” she says. “The truth is I liked the first book the best.”
Hardwicke also reflected on casting Robert Pattinson as vampire Edward Cullen
“I looked at a couple pictures and was like, ‘I’m not sure,’?” Hardwicke says. “He had been fired from his last job, he was unemployed, he was in debt.” 
When he flew to Los Angeles on his own dime to read with Kristen Stewart, Hardwicke says Stewart "felt connected to him from the first moment. That electricity, or love at first sight, or whatever it is.” 
After offering  him the part, she made him make her one promise. “You’ve got to realize that Kristen is 17 years old,” she recalls telling Pattinson. “She’s underage. You’ve got to focus, dude, or you’re going to be arrested. I made him swear on a stack of Bibles.”