No more vampires for Catherine Hardwicke. At least not the sparkly variety.
Summit Entertainment and Hardwicke jointly announced the director of the highly successful Twilight would not be returning for the sequel New Moon. The reason? Hardwicke's required prep time does not mesh with Summit's targeted late 2009, early 2010 release.
The press release states:
"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 Erik Feig, Summit's President of Production. "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."
To hear The Hollywood Reporter tell the news you might think differently.
Hardwicke had until recently been thought a candidate to helm the sequel, titled "New Moon," but word began to circulate in the industry that the relationship between Summit and the helmer has not always been smooth.
For her part though, Hardwicke had this to say, "I am sorry that due to timing I will not have the opportunity to direct New Moon. 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."
Although it wasn't mentioned in the press release, THR goes on to say actors Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart as well as writer Melissa Rosenberg, will all be returning. Not only that, the Chicago Sun Times reports both actors will be receiving a $10 million bump in their salaries. That's $12 million each.