Source: Sunday Times magazine (UK)
- August 9, 2015
Robert Pattinson Worldwide
Interview with FKA Twigs
“Who Told You I Was Getting Married?”
Just under a year ago, Twigs met a 29-year-old famous for playing a vampire, Robert Pattinson – tween heartthrob of the Twilight
films – was still fielding publicity from his acrimonious break-up from co-star Kristen Stewart. By April 2015 it was widely reported
that he and Twigs had got engaged after her rapper friend, T-Pain, blurted the news to a journalist. Twigs subsequently gave an
interview where she said she was “fine” with T-Pain’s disclosure – but she hasn’t spoken about it since.
True or not, in May they made their first public appearance on the red carpet in New York at Metropolitan Museum’s super-glamorous
Costume Institute Gala – alongside other celebrity power couples, including Beyonce and Jay-Z. The following day pictures flew around
the world of Twigs in a Christopher Kane dress (featuring a cartoon penis) with Pattinson’s hand wrapped around her waist. Attracting
more attention, the singer was wearing what appeared to be a large, exquisite engagement ring.
Almost overnight Twigs went from cult artist to the celebrity echelons of Heat magazine. Now she is regular paparazzi fodder –
especially since Pattinson joined her on tour first in the US, then in England: days befpre I met her they were photographed in
Manchester before her gig. The afternoon after our interview, he met her to go shopping in Shoreditch, and a shop assistant tweeted
gleefully about seeing them. For her core fanbase, the scrutiny of her newfound celebrity is a threat to the very revealing and
fragile qualities that make her so appealing. Yet here she is exposed, vulnerable, crying. At times she seems one of the emotionally
sensitive people I have ever interviewed. She can also be one of the most pretentious.
Perhaps she wouldn’t have remembered again if it hadn’t been for Twitter. When legions of Twilight fans, apparently affronted that
they had lost their tween heartthrob Pattinson to an alternative beauty, they began tweeting abuse. What kind of things? I ask. She
pauses. She becomes very quiet for a moment. Then looking down, fishes her phone from her bag. She hands it to me, displaying a
screen grab of racist Twitter messages, many calling her a “monkey”. How does it feel to receive messages like that? “I don’t feel
anything any more,” she says, firmly. “I’ve only cried once over it.”
I try to ask about Robert Pattinson. I ask if she worries that married life could dampen her creativity. “No, I don’t think it works
like that. Don’t you get freedom with age and experience, not confines?” She tells me she is obsessed with watching her married
neighbours in their garden. The husband, an Italian artist, will panic and cry about his work. “‘But I can’t it right!'” she says,
putting on his Italian accent, then tells me how his wife will soothe him: “‘Don’t worry, eat this delicious salad, I got the
dressing when we went to see your aunt in Sicily.'” “They have it and maybe he goes upstairs and he gets the red light. And he’ll
say, ‘Ah, I love you so much, you are the woman of my dreams.’ That’s quite interesting, no?” she grins.
She says she and Pattinson slip under the radar by avoiding celebrity hotspots, and besides, she is happiest at home. “I absolutely
love it. That’s all I want to be. I’m such a home bod.”
Did she realise their relationship would attract such interest?
“No,” she says cautiously. “I don’t understand what the levels [of fame] are. I’m a bit naive. I don’t read Hea, for example. I
don’t engage in that world, even with myself, even with my own career.” Have you watched Twilight? “No,” she says.
At moments like this she is so open. Then I ask about the wedding and the shutters come down. “Who told you I was getting married?”
I read it. “You might read somewhere I’m a monkey and it doesn’t mean I am.” She is “not prepared to talk about my private life.
I don’t really understand the fascination.”