Chris Weitz To Helm 'Twilight' Sequel

Director Chris Weitz Director Chris Weitz

It’s official — Chris Weitz will step in for ousted director Catherine Hardwicke as the director of “Twilight” sequel “New Moon,” Access Hollywood has learned.

Summit Entertainment announced on Saturday that they have hired the “Golden Compass” director, who began his career at the studio with 1999’s “American Pie.” He also directed the 2002 film “About A Boy,” with help from his brother, Paul.

“I am honored to have been entrusted with shepherding ‘New Moon’ from the page to the screen,” Chris said in a statement to Access. “The extraordinary world that Stephenie [Meyer] 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.”

Deadline Hollywood Daily broke the news that Chris was in contention on Tuesday.

“He’s the quality-of-life-choice,” a source told EW.com earlier this week, perhaps a reference to reported on-set difficulties with Catherine during “Twilight” filming.

Despite the success of the big-screen adaptation of Stephenie Meyer’s popular vampire series, which set a box office record for the largest opening weekend by a female director with $69.6 million, Summit Entertainment announced earlier this week that Catherine would not be returning.

“I am sorry that due to timing I will not have the opportunity to direct ‘New Moon,’” Hardwicke said in a statement released to Variety on Monday. “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.”

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