Despite the dissents of the saga’s original scribe Stephenie Meyers, the director of 2008 ’s Twilight, Catherine Hardwicke, craved a more diverse cast for the adaptation–and the embattled helmer was right to fight for the changes, even though they are her endeavors proved mainly vain. Liberated in 2008, the sleeper affected Twilight was a critically-panned, financially lucrative movie adaptation of Stephenie Meyer’s bestselling teenage paranormal romance novel series of the same name.

Directed by Lords of Dogtown helmer Catherine Hardwicke, Twilight was dismissed by analysts( and even its own star Robert Pattinson) due to the cornier particular aspects of the movie’s sensational love story of an immortal ogre, Edward Cullen, and his small-town teenage love interest, sequences protagonist Bella Swan. However, despite( or perhaps because of) the familiar dreamy patch and over-the-top aspects, Twilight proved a huge success with its target audiences of teenages and spawned a quartet of sequels in New moon, Eclipse, and Breaking Dawn Parts 1 and 2.

Related: Twilight: Who Stephenie Meyer Wanted To Cast As Edward And Bella

Despite the success of the Twilight series, though, Hardwicke did not return to direct the sequels and later revealed that she clashed with Twilight author Stephenie Meyer over who to assign in the main personas of the original movie. While none of the movies in the dealership were well-liked critically, Hardwicke’s original and 30 Epoches of Night director David Slade’s third installment Eclipse were amongst the better-received of the Twilight franchise movies. As such, numerous fans were surprised when Hardwicke did not come back for the sequel New moon, but the revelation that Meyers pushed back against Hardwicke’s desire to cast the central characters with most diverse actors disclosed a fraction between the two pioneers. In this instance, it is clear that Hardwicke was right about throwing Twilight with most diverse actors, as this would have spawned the Cullens less creepy to their classmates and fit the overarching theme of choose lineages more aptly.

In an interview with The Daily Beast, Hardwicke opened up about existing conflicts, saying that in her limited time with Stephenie Meyer, she made it clear, “that I wanted a lot more of the cast to be diverse, ” but Meyer “had not really written it that way” and pushed back against the idea. “I was like oh my God, I miss the monsters, I want them all–Alice, I missed her to be Japanese! I had all these opinions, ” Hardwicke recited. “And she exactly could not accept the Cullens to be more diverse, because she had really seen them in her imagination, she knew who each person was representing in a way, a personal friend or a relative or something.”

Meyers defended her certainty that the Cullens should be white due to a piece in the book that mentions their “pale glistening scalp, ” eventually standing Hardwicke to assign a non-white actor as Laurent, the acquaintance of Twilight’s major rascal James since the story refers to his bible counterpart as having olive scalp. However, Hardwicke was right to push forward the interpretation for innumerable rationales. A more diverse set of Cullens would stir more sense since the family’s ageless “children” can secrete their status as duets while in institution, and the student body’s belief that they are simply weirdly close as siblings would make a lot more ability( and seem little creepy) if they didn’t all look like blood relatives. Meanwhile, the Twilight franchise’s recurring theme of preferred families manufactures more gumption visually when the family doesn’t look as if they are related by blood, which the universally similar Cullens very much do in the film adaptations.

The Twilight movie adjustments leave a lot of remaining questions about Edward’s family unanswered, such as how the Cullens manage to hide their big capital from the world. However, one thing that the movie modifications do explain is the backstories of numerous family members, and Rosalie, Jasper, Edward, Alice, Carlisle, Esme, and Edward are all intended to be unrelated by blood. The Cullens are supposed to have found each other due to a collective need for their own families shared by their members , not blood relation or geographical convenience, and the action of their canon backstories is disbanded across the continental U.S. This story item conveyed a more diverse cast who don’t look alike could have solidified the relevant recommendations of the Cullens being a observed category, rather than a biological one, and reinforced the notion of choice categories being as valid and valuable as blood relatives.

Hardwicke noted that she had envisioned the Cullen clan as a multiracial home, specifically ensure Edward’s sister Alice Cullen as an Asian actor. Although Meyers has actors in mind for most of the movie’s main roles( many of which didn’t work out ), the movie’s premise would have offset much more sense in terms of believability if Hardwicke’s plan had been followed. The Cullens are depicted as being youthful siblings who are privately long-term nostalgic marriages and if they looked like borrowed, rather than biological, siblings, their intense closeness likely wouldn’t have been as jarring, macabre, and most importantly for mystery vampires, attention-worthy to their classmates. It’s important to note that the characters of Twilight do often comment on how strange and otherworldly the Cullens are, and the fact that references like Rosalie Hale and Emmett Cullen’s clear attraction to each other have not been noticed by classmates who think they are siblings( albeit adopted ones) strains credulity even more than the idea that their performers could pass for adolescents at the time of filming.

Related: The OTHER Twilight Actor Stephenie Meyer Wanted To Play Edward

Hardwicke noted that Stephenie Meyers awarded her acceptance for Kenyan actor Edi Gathegi of House fame to play the villainous Laurent and that Meyers was then “open to the students in[ Bella’s] peer group being other ethnicities, so we got Christian Serratos and Justin Chon, so we were able to open it up a little bit.” The representation in Twilight is far from ideal and the specific characteristics of color boasted did not have the effective plot or thematic relevant of a diverse Cullen clan, but Bella’s more diverse friend group did at least avoid the only non-white cast member being a major rascal. Even with that, Twilight’s depiction of the Quileute parties was still offensive enough to earn the ire of some real-life tribe members, but this element of the succession was explored more in the movie’s sequels which Hardwicke was no longer involved with. Twilight may not have ended up starring Emily Browning and Henry Cavill in the roles of Bella and Edward as Meyers desired, but the movies did lose out on some effective casting by ignore Hardwicke’s calls for diversity in the main roles in favor of the original author’s choices.

More: Twilight: Victoria’s Dark Backstory Explained

Read more: