Taylor Lautner, has revealed that being a 2000s icon isn’t as glamorous as we all may have originally thought. During a recent interview with Today, the star opened up about how – thanks to his work on the hit vampire romance movies, the Twilight Saga – his overwhelming fame made him scared to leave his house for years.
Based on Stephenie Meyer’s best-selling young adult novels, Twilight was a global phenomenon and box office hit when it first released in 2008. Grossing over an impressive $393 million worldwide and spawning four sequels, no one can deny its cultural significance or the fact that every young supernatural enthusiast had at least one poster of the flick hanging on their bedroom wall (guilty).
Playing the part of Jacob Black, the hunky werewolf in all five of the teen movies, Lautner was thrown into the spotlight as a teen heartthrob, and skyrocketed to fame overnight. However, being the centre of attention proved to be a lot of pressure and understandably terrifying for the young star.
“When I was 16, 17, 18 years old, waking up and trying to just go out for a walk or go on a date and I had 12 cars waiting outside my house to follow me wherever I’m going or show up to an airport or anywhere, and you have thousands of fans screaming,” Lautner said. “I went so many years either not leaving my house, or if I did, hat, sunglasses, and just like, scared.”
“It built up something inside of me where, I didn’t know it, but I was scared to go out. I’d get super anxious to go out. So I just didn’t… In the moment, it got frustrating because you just wanted to live a normal life,” the star continued. “But then when that’s taken away from you at all, you start to question yourself and start to be like ‘oh, do people not care about me anymore?’ When it goes away a little bit, you notice it, and that’s the dangerous part because that can mess with your mind.”
Since the release of Breaking Dawn Part 2 in 2012, the last entry in the Twilight franchise, the Twilight fandom has calmed down, and as such, Lautner’s fame has dwindled enough to allow the star to live a comfortable life. However, his past strife does bring up a needed ongoing conversation about fans respecting celebrities’ personal boundaries and the effects of mass press on young actors’ well-being.
Since his shapeshifter days, the actor has starred in TV series such as Scream Queens and Cuckoo. Fans can also see him act alongside Kevin James in the comedy movie Home Team, which was released on the streaming service Netflix on January 28, 2022.