After all of the unexpected drama of Twilight director Catherine Hardwicke‘s removal from the series, the big question stood: who directs now? Well, it didn’t take long before we got our answer. Summit Entertainment has announced that The Golden Compass director and About A Boy writer Chris Weitz has officially signed to pen the adorable vampire follow-up, New Moon.
President of Summit Entertainment Erik Feig had this to say about the hiring:
We love Stephenie Meyer’s fantastic TWILIGHT series. Thinking long and hard about how to turn NEW MOON into the amazing movie we know it will be, and working with Stephenie Meyer to find the right candidate, we are thrilled to announce Chris Weitz as director of the film. Chris very much understands the world of NEW MOON and has the skill set required to bring the book to glorious life as a movie. We think he will be an excellent steward of Stephenie Meyer’s vision.”
Chris Weitz Also added:
I am honored to have been entrusted with shepherding NEW MOON from the page to the screen. The extraordinary world that Stephenie has created has millions of fans, and it will be my duty to protect on their behalf the characters, themes and story they love. This is not a task to be taken lightly, and I will put every effort into realizing a beautiful film to stand alongside a beautiful book.
Summit Entertainment is hoping for a late 2009, early 2010 New Moon release.
In New Moon, Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart) is devastated by the abrupt departure of her vampire love, Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson) but her spirit is rekindled by her growing friendship with the irresistible Jacob Black. Suddenly she finds herself drawn into the world of the werewolves, ancestral enemies of the vampires, and finds her loyalties tested. Production on NEW MOON is scheduled to begin in the coming months and the studio is planning to release the film towards the end of 2009 or early 2010.
In interesting thing to note in the above official synopsis, Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson are mentioned as Bella and Edward, respectively, yet next to the character name Jacob Black, no actor is mentioned. In Twilight, the role of Jacob Black, a childhood friend of Bella who becomes a new love interest, is played by Taylor Lautner, but recent rumors are that Summit might not think Lautner can carry a lead role in New Moon. There were even rumors that Lautner’s agent wanted to show Summit what a bulked-up Lautner would look, so a digital rendering was created by the imaging team that worked on The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Therefore, Lautner’s name being left off the synopsis only serves to fuel the fire of these rumors.