By Sara Vilkomerson
August 08, 2012 at 08:30 PM EDT

It certainly hasn’t been the easiest time for Kristen Stewart.

But when EW sat down with Stewart — along with The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 2 co-stars Taylor Lautner and Robert Pattinson — at San Diego’s Comic-Con just a few weeks ago, the mood was very different. The actors’ four-year journey was approaching an end, and they were feeling reflective about the many ways the franchise has changed them. Stewart spoke about her ongoing struggle to carve out a public life that feels authentic. “I’ve never been able to fully form this thing, this persona, that some people are so f—ing good at. That’s an art. I know a lot of actors [who can do that] and you guys aren’t them,” she said, gesturing to Lautner and Pattinson.

“Did you just point to us?” Pattinson asked.

“Yeah, and thank God! I don’t like people like that,” Stewart said.People who are a complete non-person but somehow through the lens seem like they are on and interesting and engaged. I care way more about the people standing in the room. I don’t want anyone leaving and saying, ‘God, that girl is so fake.’ People tell me to make it easier on myself and to play a character when I go out on carpets and stuff. But you know what? I’d rather be me.”

For more on Breaking Dawn — Part 2 (including director Bill Condon’s reaction to the scandal and Summit’s plans for promotion) and a comprehensive look at fall’s most interesting films, pick up the new issue of Entertainment Weekly, on stands  August 10. 

Read more:

This Week’s Cover: ‘Twilight’ Exclusive — Director Bill Condon on the scandal.

Will Ferrell can’t get over Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson’s breakup — VIDEO

Summit says ‘full steam ahead’ on promotion for ‘Breaking Dawn — Part 2’ — EXCLUSIVE