The actress recently joined the cast of the franchise's third installment, Eclipse, taking over for fellow redhead Rachelle Lefevre, who plays the blood-sucking role in 2008's Twilight and its upcoming sequel New Moon.
Hardwicke admits Dallas Howard was always producers' top pick -- but the star initially rejected the part.
She says, "I know we originally asked BDH (Bryce Dallas Howard) to do the first movie but she thought it was too small a part at that time."
Hardwicke admits she sympathizes with Lefevre, who was dropped from the picture after a dispute over scheduling with another movie role, but insists she only knows about what has been reported in the media since she was sidelined in favor of Chris Weitz to direct the sequels.
She adds, "Of course I cast (Lefevre), so I wish (producers at Summit Entertainment) could have worked out something. I wasn’t involved in the negotiations, so I don’t know the details."
Lefevre is now preparing to take her former studio bosses to court over her axe from the money-spinning franchise.
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