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May 30, 2010 - The Hobbit Part 1 / Guillermo del Toro exits project
Scooped on Sunday, May 30, 2010
Guillermo Del Toro announced today that he has exited directing the two Hobbit movies. In his own words, the director exclusively told TheOneRing.net the stunning news, casting a dark shadow on the fate of the cinema follow-up duology to The Lord of the Rings.
"In light of ongoing delays in the setting of a start date for filming The Hobbit, I am faced with the hardest decision of my life", del Toro said. "After nearly two years of living, breathing and designing a world as rich as Tolkien's Middle Earth, I must, with great regret, take leave from helming these wonderful pictures. I remain grateful to Peter, Fran and Philippa Boyens, New Line and Warner Brothers and to all my crew in New Zealand. I've been privileged to work in one of the greatest countries on earth with some of the best people ever in our craft and my life will be forever changed. The blessings have been plenty, but the mounting pressures of conflicting schedules have overwhelmed the time slot originally allocated for the project. Both as a co-writer and as a director, I wish the production nothing but the very best of luck and I will be first in line to see the finished product. I remain an ally to it and its makers, present and future, and fully support a smooth transition to a new director."
del Toro will remain credited as a co-writer on the screenplays.
What this new development may mean for the future of either Hobbit movie remains to be seen, as the financial crisis that MGM finds itself in hasn't abated. Last month all development on the next James Bond movie was suspended until the outcome of MGM's future could be determined.