As you might have heard, yesterday Guillermo Del Toro dropped out as the director of the two Hobbit films that are still waiting for the greenlight from MGM. Del Toro, had to leave to persue the other film projects he has in the pipeline, he just couldn't wait around for MGM to figure out their frustrating financial problems any longer.
There was no word at the time who would end up taking his place in the directors chair but the obvious choice would be to see Peter Jackson himself take over and direct the two Hobbit films. At least that's what me and every other Lord of the Rings fans would love to see happen! Jackson himself recently said that he will direct the films himself if it becomes the only way to ensure the US$150 million film gets made. Here's what he had to say,
If that's what I have to do to protect Warner Bros' investment, then obviously that's one angle which I'll explore.
However the contracts he has with other studios may keep him from directing the films. He had already signed writing and directing contracts with other Hollywood studios for two other films. One of these films is likely to begin shooting next year. He then adds that,
The other studios may not let me out of the contracts.
So of course they are looking at other director options just to be safe. One thing for sure is the movie will get made, Jackson will not shut down the project. As of right now November is the earliest date they can start production if the film gets the go. Jackson continues,
I just don't know now until we get a new director. The key thing is that we don't intend to shut the project down. We don't intend to let this affect the progress. Everybody, including the studio, wants to see things carry on as per normal. The idea is to make it as smooth a transition as we can.
So even though Del Toro is off the project, the film will move forward as planned, but with a new director. Hopefully that new director will be Peter Jackson. It will be interesting to see who they bring on to develop the films if not Jackson, but I seriously don't see anyone else being able to take on this project properly. Jackson and del Toro have worked on developing this project for two years now, They've lived and breathed it everyday since they've been working on it. It seems like anyone else brought in from the outside wouldn't have the same energy or connection with the film to successfully breathe life into The Hobbit. Maybe I'm wrong, I guess we'll just have to wait and see who the new director will be.
It sucks that it has come to this, but at least we can find comfort in the fact that the movie will eventually get made.