Monday, December 8, 2008

Twilight Director Gone

I find this to be amusing and ironic.
The other day I was reading about what Catherine Hardwicke (director of "Twilight") thought about the book sequels to "Twilight" and now apparently she won't be involved with that franchise anymore.

According to,

"In the other books, Stephenie [Meyer] went in completely different directions. She created whole new back stories with the werewolves and everything. So in a way they're just automatically different, each book. She took it to a new place. She didn't rest on what was successful in the first book. So that's what I think the film would have to do, just take you on that journey.

"New Moon's really taking a whole other leap with this new story and there's really a lot of new characters in it. There's the werewolves which is pretty crazy. All the wolves. Then there's also going to Italy in the second book and there's motorcycle riding and cliff-jumping and diving.

"What Summit wants to do is make the next one right away - we don't want the kids to get any older because they're not supposed to age. They're vampires, they've got to stay young!"

Now (according to several different sources), Hardwicke is not going to return as director for the sequel to "Twiligt," "New Moon."

According to Variety, "'Twilight' scripter Melissa Rosenberg handed in a draft of 'New Moon' the weekend that 'Twilight' opened. Hardwicke wanted more time to work on it; Summit announced it was going ahead with 'New Moon' on November 22, with no director attached. Negotiations lasted two weeks before Hardwicke formally passed on the film Saturday.

As word spread through Hollywood agencies that the talks might not result in Hardwicke's return, reports surfaced that Summit was checking out other directors for the 'Twilight' franchise while they insisted they were still negotiating with Hardwicke, who delivered the biggest opening weekend ever for a woman. (CAA denies that they were soliciting other directors.) The movie is still going strong as the director and cast promote it overseas; it came in second this weekend with $13.2 million, grossing a total $138.6 million.

The problem that stalled negotiations was that Hardwicke had strong opinions about what to do with the next installment, and so did Summit. The debate was how to focus the adaptation of the second book, which deals more with giant werewolves than vampires, as well as the long depression of Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart), after her vampire lover (Rob Pattinson) leaves her. One issue was how to get more of teen heartthrob Pattinson into the film. (Rosenberg has figured out a device to achieve this.) But Hardwicke, burned out from her "Twilight" labors, simply wasn't willing to jam this movie with a script that still needed months of development."

"I am sorry that due to timing I will not have the opportunity to direct 'New Moon,'" said Hardwicke. "Directing 'Twilight' has been one of the great experiences of my life, and I am grateful to the fans for their passionate support of the film. I wish everyone at Summit the best with the sequel -- it is a great story."

"Catherine did an incredible job in helping us to launch the 'Twilight' franchise, and we thank her for all of her efforts and we very much hope to work with her on future Summit projects," said Summit production prexy Erik Feig. "We as a studio have a mandate to bring the next installment in the franchise to the big screen in a timely fashion so that fans can get more of Edward, Bella and all of the characters that Stephenie Meyer has created. We are able to pursue an aggressive time frame as we have the luxury of only adapting the novels into screenplays as opposed to having to create a storyline from scratch."

Over at Nikki Finke's Deadline Hollywood Daily, more talk of trouble on the set leads to different thoughts on why a different director is being chosen.

"The word from inside Summit is that Hardwicke, the acclaimed 'Thirteen' and 'Lords of Dogtown' and 'The Nativity Story' director, 'was 'difficult' and 'irrational' during the making of Twilight,' one insider explains to me. 'That doesn't mean anything when you're talking about a filmmaker because they all are, but still...' But an outside source also informs me, 'Summit didn't like her. They're saying the DP [director of photography] Elliot Davis is the one responsible for the film's sumptuous visual look, that the editor Nancy Richardson had to save the film in post-production, and Summit thought Hardwicke's [CAA] agent Beth Swofford was alternately ineffectual and hysterical. It certainly demonstrates, while CAA agents boast of their vast influence, how little clout and muscle they actually have, or are willing to use, to protect their artists.'"

What are your thoughts on this? Do you think this is a good decision for the "Twlight" franchise? Do you think it is bad for it? Or do you just not care?
More news to come! Catch ya' later!


bandito said...

Only time, and the sequels, will tell...

Head Hero said...

True, but still pretty cool that about the highest opening weekend for a female director.