Catherine Hardwicke helmed the massively successful “Twilight,” making stars out of Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart, along with having the biggest opening weekend ever for a female film director, but she will not return for the vampire sequel, “New Moon.”
Nikki Finke’s Deadline Hollywood Daily first broke the news that Hardwicke would not return and on Sunday the director released a statement to Variety. “I am sorry that due to timing I will not have the opportunity to direct ‘New Moon,’” Hardwicke said in a statement released to the entertainment trade mag. “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. I wish everyone at Summit the best with the sequel — it is a great story.”
Summit says they split with Hardwicke on good terms and the reason she is not involved in the sequel is an issue of timing. “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,” Summit production’s Erik Feig said in statement.
“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,” the statement continued.
However, a Summit source claimed there was friction between the director and the studio and told Deadline Hollywood Daily that Hardwicke was “difficult” and “irrational” during production.Ã¢â¬Â¬