If “The Twilight Saga” is familiar to you, this Kristen Stewart bio is probably familiar, too. Stewart is the actress best known for her role as Bella Swan in the romantic fantasy films based on Stephanie Meyer’s “Twilightnovels. But for those readers who don’t recognize “Twilight”almost impossible with all the media hypehere is a short biographical sketch.

Kristen Jaymes Stewart was born on April 9, 1990, in Los Angeles, California. Although Bella Swan is her most famous role, she has been acting since childhood. Both her parents, John Stewart and Jules Mann-Stewart, work in television and film.

Stewart’s Early Work

After a talent scout caught her performance in a Christmas play when she was eight years old, Stewart appeared in a few small television roles. Her first significant film role came in 2001, with a part in “The Safety of Objects.” Her big break came in 2002, when she starred alongside Jodie Foster in “Panic Room.”

Praised for her “Panic Room” performance, Stewart joined the cast of the 2003 film “Cold Creek Manor,” a 2004 Showtime movie called “Speak,” and a few other films. She appeared in two 2007 films, “The Cake Eaters” and “Into The Wild.” She earned a Young Artist Award for the second film, after two previous nominations for the award.

“The Twilight Saga”

In 2008, Stewart took the starring role in “Twilight,” opposite Robert Pattinson. “Twilight” is based on a series of vampire novels written by Stephanie Meyer. Stewart stars as Bella Swan, a teenager who risks everything when she falls in love with a vampire. Pattinson stars as Edward Cullen, the lead vampire in the film.

After winning an MTV Movie Award for Best Female Performance, Stewart reprised her role as Bella Swan in two “Twilight” sequels: “New Moon” (2009) and “Eclipse” (2010). The final installment, “Breaking Dawn,” will release in two parts, first in November 2011 and later in November 2012.

Other Film Projects

“The Twilight Saga” skyrocketed Stewart to stardom, though Stewart stepped out of the spotlight to take on a number of independent projects. In a 2010 role, Stewart portrayed American rocker Joan Jett alongside Dakota Fanning as Cherie Currie, in the movie “The Runaways.”

In 2011, projects include a film based on American writer Jack Kerouac’s classic 1951 novel, “On The Road.” Set to release in 2011, the movie depicts the Beat Generation living in the 1950s. Stewart will star as Marylou.