Back in March of this year we reported on the news that Final Destination 5 was on the way, the fifth installment in the tired long-running horror franchise about death/fate catching up with those who manage to evade it. A month later news hit that the film had  snagged the writer of The Thing prequel and the Nightmare on Elm Street remake.

Now comes the news that Final Destination 5 has snagged a director and the news almost redefines the term “out of left field.” Instead of getting one of the previous Final Destination directors back for another go-around, Variety reports that New Line has tapped Steven Quale to direct the fifth movie.

Who is Steven Quale? Well, he’s not a known name but you’ll definitely have heard of the movies he’s been involved with: He was the second-unit director and visual effects supervisor on James Cameron’s Avatar, the second-unit director on Titanic and he worked on the visual effects for Terminator 2: Judgment Day. He could be described as a sort of protege of Cameron’s, since Cameron recruited him out of USC film school to work on The Abyss as a production assistant.

Impressive credentials, I think you’ll agree.

Although Final Destination 5 will not be the first time Quale has been in the director’s chair (he has a short film, a TV movie and a documentary under his belt), this will be his first big theatrical movie. I’m just wondering why he’s chosen the fifth film in an over-the-top teen horror franchise to helm… Perhaps Quale is eager to direct a film himself after decades of being behind-the-scenes and Final Destination 5 just came along at the right time. Coincidentally, James Cameron made his own big directorial debut with Piranha 2, another B-movie horror sequel – so who knows, maybe Quale is on the right path?

If Cameron could go from Piranha 2 to greatness…

Variety‘s article also reveals some new info about FD5, including that the opening scene [SPOILER Alert!] will take place on a suspension bridge and the rumored laser-eye surgery scene has been confirmed. Intriguing stuff, but I can’t see how this will be all that different from what we’ve seen so far.

Although box office-wise ($500 million and counting!) I don’t know if there would be much point in changing the formula…

Final Destination 5 will start shooting on September 13th and will be released in 3D and regular theaters on August 26th, 2011.

Source: Variety