Millions of fans read Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight books, and several more millions of them came in droves for the five-film series about the love triangle between vampire Edward Cullen, mortal Bella Sawn, and werewolf Jacob Black. The series made stars out of Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner, and helped revive the vampire genre in the entertainment industry – imagine a world without the series True Blood or The Vampire Diaries. Even for Twilight‘s pop culture and financial impacts, not everyone seemed to be swept away by the powerful love story involving vampires, mortals and werewolves.
Critics were largely unimpressed by the Twilight series and the acting of the top trio, and the series never received any love from the Oscars or any major awards show – save perhaps for the more youth-oriented MTV and Teen Choice Awards, where the series’ core fanbase voted them in for wins. Yet there was one awards show willing to give “love” throughout each film’s release. The Golden Raspberry Awards, or Razzies, have honored the worst in films for over 30 years – and they gave the Twilight Saga attention. In the five years of the series’ release, it would receive numerous nominations and awards for the series’ actors, directors and writers – though not all of the films would get such treatment.
The 2008 series opener would be the only chapter to not be “honored” by the Razzie committee, denying the actors and even director Catherine Hardwicke a shot to compete against Mike Myers’ comedy The Love Guru and German filmmaker Uwe Boll. Yet the second film, 2009’s New Moon, would get the ball rolling. While New Moon was not on the shortlist for Worst Picture and director Chris Weitz was spared a bid, it still received four nominations – including a shared bid for Stewart, Pattinson and Lautner for Worst Screen Couple. That film would leave without a victory.
The 2010 chapter Eclipse would double New Moon’s Razzie nomination take (and then some) with a total of 9 bids overall. Lautner and Pattinson were both nominated for Worst Actor, and Stewart received a Worst Actress bid – and all of them would lose. Yet the series would get its first Razzie in the form of Worst Supporting Actor winner Jackson Rathbone, who played the fighting vampire Jasper Hale. Yet to be fair to Twilight fans irked at Rathbone’s victory, he also won the award for the ceremony’s big winner – M. Night Shyamalan’s disappointing adaptation of the children’s series The Last Airbender.
Then came the first of the two-part epic Twilight close in Breaking Dawn, and that film was not immune from the Golden Raspberry attack. It did earn one less nomination than Eclipse with 8 total bids, and would leave empty-handed – probably to the delight of its fans. Yet Lautner was cited his second Worst Actor bid (though he lost), and Oscar-winning writer-director Bill Condon followed up his success on that other awards show with a Worst Director bid. Breaking Dawn – Part 1 was overshadowed by a record-setting year for Adam Sandler, whose hit comedy Jack and Jill (in which he played both roles) won every category of the ceremony.
At this point in the Twilight series, the four films had received 21 bids but only one award. Yet when the 2012 series-capping Breaking Dawn – Part 2 was released, the Golden Raspberry committee had to think if there would be an opportunity to crown that last film – for its own merits, or for the series as a whole. It ended up receiving 11 total nominations, just over half of the total number of bids the series had received previously. It would lead the 2012 Razzies in nods and wins with seven, including citations for Worst Picture, Condon’s directing, Stewart for Worst Actress, and even two trophies for Lautner – sharing one with young co-star Mackenzie Foy (as Edward & Bella’s daughter Renesmee). The ensemble cast would also be named the Worst Screen Ensemble.
While Team Jacob may have been disappointed in Lautner’s “victories” for Breaking Dawn – Part 2, Team Edward could breathe a sigh of relief. Despite six individual nominations for the series, Pattinson didn’t receive any Razzies for his portrayal of the vampire Edward Cullen (though he would “share” in Breaking Dawn – Part 2‘s Worst Ensemble win). Yet his on and off-screen partner Stewart, Lautner, and Rathbone weren’t as fortunate – as they would receive “honors” for their work. With the Twilight Saga on celluloid officially done, the series collected a total of 32 nominations and 8 wins – with the majority of both coming from the last chapter. Breaking Dawn – Part 2‘s coronation as the Razzies’ choice for Worst of 2012 may have made one thing clear: perhaps their committee felt their “praise” for the last film was a kick-out-the-door tribute to the series as a whole.