Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner
08/13/2009 AT 12:15 PM EDT
Move over, Robert Pattinson
, it seems Taylor Lautner
is taking over your Twilight
spotlight – and your leading lady.
"I love that kid," Lautner's New Moon
love interest Kristen Stewart
, 19, says in Entertainment Weekly
's Fall Movie Preview issue, on newsstands Friday. "I would do anything for him. I would kill for him, literally."
But the 17-year-old heartthrob – who originated his role as Bella's bestie Jacob Black – nearly lost
his starring shot in the blockbuster franchise's follow-up, until Stewart stepped in.
"It's completely understandable why they wanted to make sure he was right," says Stewart, who with New Moon
director Chris Weitz, encouraged Lautner's casting. "He was so young, 16, so I got it. But I knew he had [to do] it. Just because of how I felt around him. I literally saw Jacob in him."
To further secure his role, Lautner famously gained
more than 30 lbs. for New Moon
. "Now I'm a big bad wolf!" he says.