Disney+ Supernatural Romance Blockbuster Is Still Controversial Today

By Sckylar Gibby-Brown | Published


You better hold on tight, Spider Monkey, because Twilight is now on Disney+. The movie that caused a cultural phenomenon around sparkling vampires and red-flag romance is easier to stream than ever now that Disney has added it to its catalog of films.

The Storm That Was Twilight

In 2008, a phenomenon took the world by storm, captivating middle-grade and teenage girls with its tale of forbidden love, supernatural beings, and the allure of the unknown. Twilight, directed by Catherine Hardwicke and based on the novel by Stephenie Meyer, marked the beginning of a cinematic journey that would leave an indelible mark on popular culture and a black mark on Robert Pattinson’s filmography the actor wishes he could forget. 

Bella And Edward


At its core, Twilight revolves around the blooming relationship between Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart), a teenage girl, and Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), a 104-year-old vampire. Set in the gloomy town of Forks, Washington, the story follows Bella’s journey as she navigates the complexities of high school life and discovers the truth about Edward’s supernatural identity.

The Road From Book To Screen

Blessed with more luck than any other average writer, Meyer’s book began shifting through producers’ hands a year before it was published. In 2004, Greg Mooradian introduced the unpublished manuscript to Paramount Pictures’ MTV Films. Despite initial enthusiasm, the adaptation’s departure from the source material led to development stalling at Paramount.

But Karen Rosenfelt, co-president of production, bit by the vampire bug, was determined to see the project through. She sought alternative avenues and eventually connected with Summit Entertainment. Under Summit’s leadership, Catherine Hardwicke was tapped to direct Twilight, with Melissa Rosenberg as the screenwriter.

Keeping True To The Books


To keep true to the original source material, Meyer was heavily involved in production and few changes strayed from her vision with the exception of a couple of altered scenes for cinematic purposes. In 2008, Twilight debuted, spearheading a cultural phenomenon that would define a generation’s fascination with vampires, werewolves, and cringy romances.

Critics Hated Twilight, But The Fans Loved It

Upon its release, Twilight polarized critics but resonated deeply with its target audience, becoming a box office sensation. Despite mixed reviews, the film’s romantic allure and supernatural intrigue struck a chord with viewers, catapulting the franchise to international fame. Its success paved the way for four sequels, each building upon the immersive world Meyer had created.

Controversial Portrayals Of Relationships

But while Edward and Jacob (Taylor Lautner) seemed to have a full generation of teenagers under their spell and fighting over which team they were on, Twilight’s flaws didn’t slip past everyone who watched the movie. While some praised its thematic depth and emotional resonance, others criticized its perceived glorification of unhealthy relationship dynamics, teenage obsession, and gender roles. The divergence from traditional vampire mythology also invited scrutiny as well as the racial and class stereotypes and the exploitation of the Quileute Tribe.

Twilight’s Legacy


Despite the criticisms, the legacy of Twilight endures, with production companies certain they can still make more money off the franchise. Spearheaded by Lionsgate Television, a new Twilight TV series is in the works, looking to explore fresh narratives within Meyer’s universe. 

For fans looking forward to the revamp (pun intended), we’re still a few years away from seeing the first episode, if it ever happens at all. But if you really can’t wait, Twilight is now streaming in the Hulu section of Disney+. This section is still in beta and requires subscriptions to both services to access.