Guillermo del Toro won’t be visiting Middle Earth after all

Some bad news for residents of Hobbiton.

Guillermo Del Toro has announced that he will no longer be directing The Hobbit films. According to THR’s Heat Vision Blog, in an announcement first broken to the readers of Lord of the Rings superfan site, del Toro stated that “In light of ongoing delays in the setting of a start date for filming…I must, with great regret, take leave from helming these wonderful pictures.” He says he will continue to write the films with Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh and Phillipa Boyens.

Del Toro, who had moved to New Zealand to be there for production, cited partially the many films he will be involved with over the next years and the uncertain development schedule as part of his reason for leaving the Middle Earth production.

“The blessings have been plenty, but the mounting pressures of conflicting schedules have overwhelmed the time slot originally allocated for the project,” said del Toro in his statement. “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.”

Peter Jackson indicated that he understood del Toro’s position that the long stagnation had “compromised his commitment to other long term projects. The bottom line is that Guillermo just didn’t feel he could commit six years to living in New Zealand, exclusively making these films, when his original commitment was for three years.”

Jackson also said that the film’s development will continue unabated — this, despite the financial problems with distributor MGM, which was also first noted by via an unnamed source back in March.

Posted on May 31, 2010 at 06:00 by Lincoln Eddy · Permalink
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