Jackson Rathbone: From 'Twilight' Jasper to 'Airbender' Sokka

Just like Twi-hards fawn over Robert Pattinson as dreamy bloodsucker Edward Cullen, Avatar: The Last Airbender fans have popularized the dark and brooding firebender Prince Zuko (a character that dodged the Jesse McCartney-casting bullet earlier this year).

Well, with the 2010 release of M. Night Shyamalan’s film adaptation of the series, (titled The Last Airbender to avoid confusion with James Cameron's flick), we're starting to see a Twilight-Avatar connection. Especially when both movies have an actor in common: Jackson Rathbone.

But did you know Jackson Rathbone narrowly escaped both the roles that would set upon him mobs of rabid tween-and-teenage girls?

This past November, at the Twilight-arts hybrid festival event dubbed NewCon2009, Rathbone shared his casting experience for Airbender and revealed he originally auditioned not for the role of comic-relief Sokka (shown right), but for the dramatic Zuko.

Of course, as you'll see in the video below, somebody in the audience had to bring up his original audition for Edward Cullen, before he was cast as the charismatic Jasper Hale.

Creepy coincidence? Maybe, but we're just glad Jackson Rathbone will be churning out Sokka’s witty banter, and he won’t have to so much as touch the continual I-must-have-the-Avatar mantra. Thankfully, Jesse McCartney won’t have to, either.

-Tanya Marcy