He auditioned and was cast in a small role in Guys and Dolls.
He next auditioned for Thornton Wilder's Our Town and was cast as George Gibbs. He caught the attention of an acting agent in a production of Tess of the d'Urbervilles and began looking for professional roles.
In 2008, Pattinson landed the role of Edward Cullen in the film Twilight, based on Stephenie Meyer's best-selling novel of the same name.
He reprised his role as Edward Cullen in the Twilight sequel The Twilight Saga: New Moon, which was released on 20 November 2009.
The film earned a record-breaking $142,839,137 opening weekend and an overall run of $709,827,462 worldwide.
The film received mixed reviews, Kirk Honeycutt of The Hollywood Reporter praised Pattinson's performance, stating that "(he) makes you forget the white makeup and weird eye contact lenses – to focus on a character torn between his love for the human Bella (Stewart) and the knowledge that she'll have to let go of her beating heart if she's to stay with him forever." Will Lawrence of Empire Online praised the performance of three leads of the film by saying that "All three corners of the love triangle look sharper than before: the most accomplished actor, Stewart, still lip-biting, Lautner still pec-flexing, and Pattinson not fully shaking that fiery-eyed pout.
But all have grown into their roles, cutting loose in a film that (thankfully) sidesteps the melodrama of its prequels." Though the film received mixed reviews, some critics praised his performance.
He is a supporter of ECPAT (End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes), and the GO Campaign, a nonprofit organization that raises awareness and funds to help orphans and vulnerable children throughout the world, of the latter he became ambassador in 2015 to help raise international awareness of the non-profit organization.He became involved in amateur theatre at the Barnes Theatre Company.According to TV Guide, Pattinson was initially apprehensive about auditioning for the role of Edward Cullen, fearful that he would not be able to live up to the "perfection" expected from the character.This short film later re-released as a part of an anthology film titled Love & Distrust, comprising five short films following eight individuals from diverse backgrounds on their quest for true contentment.He later got the leading role of vampire Edward Cullen in the film adaptations of the Twilight novels by Stephenie Meyer, which consisted of five films between 20 that combined grossed over .3 billion in worldwide receipts.Twilight brought Pattinson worldwide fame, In 2010, Pattinson was named one of TIME magazine's 100 Most Influential People in The World, and also in the same year Forbes ranked him as one of the most powerful celebrities in the world in the Forbes Celebrity 100. He sang in the Twilight film series and How to Be, a 2008 independent comedy-drama film.