As if this movie hasn't been delayed enough...
After two years of working closely with the script and executive producer Peter Jackson, Guillermo del Toro announced that he will no longer be directing The Hobbit, TheOneRing.net reports. Del Toro said that leaving the project was "the hardest decision of my life," saying that "the mounting pressures of conflicting schedules have overwhelmed the time slot originally allocated for the project."
Peter Jackson said that del Toro left the project on good terms but "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."
But even though he's stepping down as director, del Toro will continue to co-write the screenplays with Philippa Boyens, Fran Walsh and Peter Jackson.
There are a few names being tossed around for who will take the director's chair. Even Jackson himself. One of the three second-unit Lord of the Rings directors (Richard Matthews, Geoff Murphy or John Mahaffie) may take the spot but it's all so disappointing. We wanted a film with the dark feel of Pan's Labyrinth. Oh well. What's J.J. Abrams up to these days? Alfonso Cuaron?