How Kristen Stewart's Cheating Scandal Damaged Her Career

Remember when Kristen Stewart was publicly exposed for having an affair with a married director, and people went berserk over the scandalous news? The "Spencer" actor later explained how the intense negative reaction from the press ultimately resulted in her missing out on a movie role.

In 2012, Us Weekly published shocking photos that showed Stewart and married director and father of two Rupert Sanders getting cozy just months after their movie "Snow White and the Huntsman" — in which Stewart played the titular role of Snow White — was released in theaters. Another contributing factor to the strong backlash was that Stewart was in a relationship with her "Twilight" costar, Robert Pattinson, at the time. After the liaison was exposed, the actor publically apologized to Pattinson, saying that a "momentary indiscretion has jeopardized the most important thing in [her] life, the person [she loves and respects] the most, Rob." 

The story went so wild that — in a bizarre pop culture moment — then-future President Donald Trump tweeted condemning Stewart for cheating – several times! Other than the plethora of public backlash she received, Stewart has revealed that the cheating scandal also had real repercussions for her acting career.

Kristen Stewart was written out of Snow White franchise post-scandal

Kristen Stewart missed out on her next film franchise due to the widespread negativity surrounding her cheating scandal. That's right, "Snow White and the Huntsman" came out with a sequel in 2016, "The Huntsman: Winter's War," in which Stewart was noticeably absent. The actor's former titular role of Snow White was written out, and the film instead focused on Liam Hemsworth's Huntsman character. Although she was arguably one of the bigger stars in the movie's lineup, Stewart explained on "The Howard Stern Show" that the scandal with the first film's director, Rupert Sanders, was likely the reason she wasn't asked to return.

"We lived in a different time then. You know what I mean? I feel like the s**t-shaming that went down was so absurd," Stewart recalled on the radio show. "And they should've put me in that movie! It would've been better. Not to be a d**k, but ... they didn't put me in that movie because I went through such a highly publicized scandal, and so they were, like, scared of touching that."

Considering "Snow White and the Huntsman" earned over $364 million at the box office and the sequel massed less than half of that, maybe Stewart has a point.

Kristen Stewart's talent triumphed over the backlash

Kristen Stewart has made a serious comeback into critical acclaim after what some would call her cheating scandal "flop era." For a while, there was a stigma against the "Twilight" actor for her much-parodied portrayal of Bella Swan in the teen fiction franchise –plus the cheating scandal of it all. Following a two-year break after the releases of "Snow White and the Huntsman" and the final "Twilight" installment, Stewart returned to the screen in 2014 with a slew of independent film roles. One of which was in the 2014 French film, "Clouds of Sils Marils," for which she won the prestigious Cesar Award for Best Supporting Actress.

"I am obsessed with ignoring the idea that we're creating products," she explained to IndieWire in 2015 about her string of indie roles. "I really choose every single project I do based on the desire, and based on really just wanting to experience making that story happen."

Of course, Stewart's major league acting comeback became official when she was nominated for the Best Actress Oscar for her portrayal of Princess Diana in 2021's "Spencer." On top of acting, Stewart has long shown interest in directing and is set to make her feature directorial debut with the upcoming film "Chronology of Water." In a June Interview Magazine spread, she divulged that she was writing a "stoner girl comedy" movie with her fiance Dylan Meyer.