Renée Higginbotham Dwyer (formerly Swan) was born to Marie Higginbotham and her husband, in 1968. She is Phil Dwyer's wife, the ex-wife of Charlie Swan, the mother of Bella Swan, the mother-in-law of Edward Cullen, and the grandmother of Renesmee Cullen.
She is portrayed by Sarah Clarke in the movie adaptations.
Renée was born in Downey, California. Her parents divorced when she was still a child, and she never had much contact with her father. Her mother, Marie, was a difficult and bitter woman, but also hardworking and loyal. Renée had a very different personality: fun-loving, creative and artistic, but flighty and inconsistent. She did not do well in school, despite the fact that she tested well. During her teenage years she was unable to hold onto a job for long, though she always interviewed very well.
The first year after high school, Renée, who could no longer take living with her pessimistic mother, moved in with a friend who had space available in her small apartment, working several temporary jobs to pay for it. The next summer, one of her girlfriends decided to take a month off and travel the length of the Pacific coast, camping along the way. This was exactly the kind of adventure that she loved. She went on the trip with a few other girls, having no idea where she would live when she got back, if her roommate rented the space to someone else.
On First Beach, Renée met Charlie Swan. She was instantly attracted to him because of his difference from her ex-boyfriends: serious and responsible, yet funny and kind. They spent a few days together before she departed, but not before promising Charlie that she would visit on her way back. Renée missed Charlie for the rest of the trip, and when she returned to Forks, she was easily convinced to stay for a little while longer. Renée loved being in love, and she loved feeling like she was living an adventure. When Charlie proposed, getting married sounded like the perfect cap to the whirlwind romance. They were married by a justice of the peace, with only Charlie's parents and three best friends in attendance. Renée sent her mother a picture of the wedding, but she didn't respond.
At first, Renée enjoyed the novelty of being married. Charlie was easier to live with than her mother, and his passionate adoration of her was quite pleasant. She had a great deal of fun decorating their little house and loved his quiet and kind parents. While living in Forks, she worked as a waitress, where she loved meeting new people.
Renée was excited when she found out that she was pregnant, and learned to knit and decorate the nursery. She wrote to her mother again, and this time Marie sent a gift: her own mother's handmade quilt. Renée was touched. However, after a few months, everything started to get stale. The constant covering of clouds and rain depressed her, and Charlie's busy time at work and caring for his parents left her unhappy and trapped. Though she loved Charlie, there was no adventure left in their now staid relationship.
Renée gave birth to Bella Swan on September 13, 1987. After her daughter was born, she became more responsible in her ways around the house. Her unhappy time did not brighten up, though. She hated the thought of letting Bella grow up in the gloomy town and begged Charlie to leave with her, though she knew that was not a kind thing to ask. Finally, she decided to leave on her own and get her life in order, for Bella's sake. She realized that she had made some life-altering decisions without much thought, and she wanted to start over and proceed more carefully. They divorced in March 1988.
She moved back in with her mother, who was still difficult, but who doted on Bella. She enrolled in school and got her elementary education degree - spending time with Bella had made her realize that she was good with children and enjoyed them. Once she had her degree and a job, she moved to Riverside with Bella and found a job in kindergarten. Bella grounded Renée, who found ways to be satisfied with small changes in her hobbies and recreational activities. She made many close friends among the other teachers.
Renée's life was still chaotic, however, as she always got herself into heavy situations. As Bella grew, she began to assume many of the adult responsibilities in the home, simply because she was better suited to them than Renée was. When she took over the bookkeeping at age 10, their lives became much easier.
They lived in Riverside until Bella was 6 years old. Bella and Renée then moved to Phoenix, Arizona where they remained for 5 years, after Renée's mother passed away. She got a job there.
Though she missed Charlie, she did her best to keep herself from becoming entangled with other men romantically, worried about the impact such a relationship would have on Bella. When Bella was in her teens, she realized that her mother was lonely and encouraged her to date.
- Main article: Twilight
After a few failed relationships, Renée met a minor league baseball player named Phil Dwyer. They married before the beginning of Twilight, when Bella was 17.
Because Bella was attending school in Phoenix, Renée couldn't spend very much time with Phil who traveled around because of his job, and thus she was unhappy. Bella decided to live with her father, Charlie Swan, in Forks, so Renée and Phil could have more time together.
The first time Renée meets Edward is in Twilight, after Bella was attacked by James, in the hospital. Edward tells her that Bella fell down two flights of stairs and went through a window, which resulted in her bad injury. She later tries to convince Bella to move to Jacksonville with her and Phil, only to have Bella refuse and decide to stay in Forks with Edward and Charlie.
- Main article: New Moon
Renée remains absent in New Moon, but has been mentioned by Charlie. According to him, Renée visited Forks shortly after Edward and his family left, when Bella became catatonic. She intended to move Bella to Jacksonville to help her move on, but she snapped immediately in front of them. She convinced them to let her stay, but Renée remained increasingly worried about her daughter's condition until Jacob made her happy again. Edward's return made her daughter completely normal again, and despite this troublesome period, Renée shows nothing but support to Bella and Edward's rekindled relationship.
- Main article: Eclipse
In Eclipse, while Phil is busy with work, Bella and Edward spend a weekend to visit Renée in Jacksonville. Her focus was sharpened because of Phil's absence. She told Bella she noticed that Edward was very intense and protective around her, and she felt like she was missing out on something. But Bella quickly reminds her that she has been reading too many mystery and sci-fi novels, and tells her to stick to romance.
In the film adaptation of Eclipse, she gives Bella a quilt made of her personal T-shirts to keep her warm in Alaska after hearing that she is attending college there. She also mentions that colleges are a lot sunnier in Florida, as she tries to get Bella to change her mind.
- Main article: Breaking Dawn
In Breaking Dawn, Bella tells Renée about her engagement with Edward, and, despite her reluctance against teen marriage, she accepts her daughter's decision wholeheartedly, much to everyone's surprise and Charlie's dismay. She is present while making wedding plans with Esme and during her daughter's wedding. She and Charlie give Bella an antique hair comb containing sapphires for something old and something blue.
Renée becomes a grandmother during Bella and Edward's honeymoon, but she does not learn of the existence of her granddaughter, Renesmee, nor does she know that Bella has become a vampire afterward due to their worries about her being unable to handle the changes. Charlie has agreed to keep her in the dark in order to keep all of them safe. She is only told that her daughter got sick following the wedding, and is slowly recovering.
Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined
- Main article: Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined
In an alternate story of Twilight, almost all characters have switched gender and names, with Renée being one of few exceptions. In this story, she gave birth to a son instead of a daughter, and named him Beau in honor of her deceased father. Much like with Bella, Renée was very close to Beau, who also took on the responsibilities around the house.
When the sadistic vampire, Joss, decides to hunt her son for sports, she lures him to the ballet studio where Renée used to take lessons (as opposed to it being Bella's old ballet studio). After becoming a vampire, Beau is forced to fake his death for his family's protection. While at Beau's funeral, Renée appears completely heartbroken and distraught. Archie brings her a chair before she can have a chance to fall. She then departs with Phil.
Renée and Bella look alike in their features. She has medium length brown hair, innocent, childish blue eyes and a round face full of laugh lines. Her height is around 5'4".
In Life and Death, she is said to have a pointy chin and full lips. She is also sometimes mistaken to be Beau's sister.
Personality and traits
Renée is described by Bella as very eccentric, an experimental chef, forgetful, and very perceptive in a childish way. She tends to shift her hobbies and interests from one to another, such as yoga, but never sticks with any of them for very long.
Renée has very negative views of early marriages, since she married Charlie right out of high school. This is something Bella feared when she got engaged to Edward. Renée, however, told her that those views of marriage only apply to herself. Edward says that her thoughts are childish, but she sees the world very clearly. At one point in the Twilight film, Renée describes herself as someone who "repels technology" as she is always misplacing her phone charger. According to Bella, she is more like the mother and Renée the child. In the films, she is also shown to be good at sewing, having presented Bella with a quilt out of her trip T-shirts in Eclipse for her graduation present.
Renée is the daughter of Marie Higginbotham, the mother of Bella Swan, the ex-wife of Charlie Swan, the wife of Phil Dwyer, the mother-in-law of Edward Cullen, and maternal grandmother of Renesmee Cullen.
- Main article: Charlie Swan and Renée Dwyer
- "Well, Charlie, don't you look dashing!"
- ―Renée to Charlie on Bella's wedding
Charlie Swan is Renée's ex-husband. They first met while she was passing through Forks. Their brief encounter affected each other greatly and by the time she returned, they married quickly. Though she was happy for a while, Forks began to become depressing due to the lack of sunlight.
Renée had Bella with him, and shortly thereafter realized that she had rushed into marriage. She decided to divorce him, although he remained somewhat in love with her, and so did she. After they divorced, she kept in touch with him for her daughter's sake.
Renée's second husband, Phil Dwyer, is a minor league baseball player. They fell in love around 2004 and married in September. They had planned on marrying on a beach in Mexico, but it didn't go that way. Unlike her first marriage, theirs seems more successful due to their similar likings of adventure.
"I miss you."
"Oh, honey. I miss you, too."
- ―Bella and Renée.[src]
Bella Swan is Renée's daughter. She took Bella away from Forks when she was still a baby. They are each other's best friends, and Bella has always loved her. She'd always put her relationships with men over Bella, but she also wanted her to be independent. After Renée married Phil, Bella realizes that she feels unhappy when he travels around for his job, and decides to move back to Forks to live with her father for awhile. After Renée and Phil permanently relocate to Jacksonville, Florida, she tries to convince her daughter to move with them, but Bella decides to live in Forks to stay with her new boyfriend, Edward Cullen.
She wholeheartedly supports her daughter's decision to marry Edward in Breaking Dawn, even though she has deeply negative views on teen marriages, and adapts to her new in-law family very quickly. They grew gradually distant after Bella became a vampire, but stayed in touch with each other. As far as she knows, Bella is recovering from a rare disease that she picked up while on her honeymoon with Edward. She is never told that Bella has become a vampire, nor is she aware of the existence of her new granddaughter, Renesmee Cullen.
- "I think that boy is in love with you."
- ―Renée on Edward.[src]
Edward Cullen is Renée's son-in-law once he marries Bella in Breaking Dawn. Unlike Charlie, Renée likes him wholeheartedly from the very beginning, because he makes her daughter happy. Even after his departure that rendered her daughter majorly depressed and in pain, she accepted him with open arms when he returned to their lives.
When Bella calls Renée to tell her about her engagement to Edward, Renée fully supports their decision, and even travels to Forks to meet Edward's family and help arrange wedding plans with Esme.
She is unaware that her son-in-law and his family are vampires, and that Bella has become one as well and that she has mothered a half-human/half-vampire granddaughter named Renesmee.
Marie Higginbotham was Renée Dwyer's mother, and has been deceased six years prior to the beginning of New Moon, when Bella was twelve. Renée and Marie weren't very close due to their different personalities and perspectives on things. When she noticed her marriage to Charlie, Marie never responded to her invitation, but sent her a blanket when she gave birth to Bella. They lived together for a while after Renée moved away from Forks with Bella and divorced Charlie.
She has a minor but important role in New Moon, because Marie's appearance plays a part in Bella's choice to become a vampire.
- "I don't know how much we should tell Renée about this."
Renesmee Cullen is Renée's granddaughter. Since Renesmee is growing at an immensely accelerated rate, Bella and Charlie have agreed to keep her mother in the dark about her granddaughter's existence, knowing that the supernatural world wasn't for everyone to comprehend. However, Bella is hopeful that she would be able to introduce her daughter to Renée someday in the future.
Renée is one half of Renesmee's namesake, the other being Esme Cullen.
- "I couldn't drive to Florida and hug my mom and let her know that I wasn't dead. I couldn't even call her and explain the confusing message I'd left on her answering machine."
- ―Beau's painful realization upon becoming a vampire[src]
She took Beau away from Forks at infancy and raised him in California then Arizona. Like her relationship with Bella, they are very close, though Beau always felt out of sync with her. After Renée married Phil, Beau moves back to Forks to live with his father to give Renée the opportunity to travel with Phil.
When Beau unexpectedly became a vampire, he had no choice but to fake his death to do so to keep his family safe. Renée doesn't take the news well and grieves at her son's funeral. Though Beau is agonized over causing her pain, he knows that she will have Phil to take care of her.
- Eclipse film
- Breaking Dawn