Catherine Hardwicke, director of the big hit Twilight, based on the mega-successful book by author Stephanie Meyer, won’t be returning to helm the sequel, New Moon.  A director hasn’t been named yet, but we probably will hear one very soon.

I’m very surprised about this, and it reminds me of  Terrence Howard being replaced by Don Cheadle in Iron Man 2… No one is safe, I guess.

So what happened?  With Summit Entertainment wanting New Moon to come out in late 2009 or early 2010, the official word from both Hardwicke and Summit is that she won’t have enough time to get things rolling to start shooting it by the start of next Spring at the earliest.  Not only that, but the studio may want to save money and possibly shoot the adaptation of the third book Eclipse, back-to back with New Moon.

I’d be concerned about trying to do even one movie, much less two sequels back-to-back, without so much as a script ready, but they do have the cast and this isn’t exactly Iron Man 2, which has a little bit of a shorter pre-production schedule.

But I’ve been reading that there are some other reasons, that of course aren’t official, but it’s Hollywood, so who knows if they’re true or not?  Anyway, Hardwicke has some serious indie film cred, including Thirteen (I couldn’t watch it–I fell ill due to the camera work) and The Nativity Story.  But she doesn’t have action experience, and that may have killed it.

Harry at Ain’t It Cool News commented that he liked the film, but felt the action scenes were weak, and that he felt Hardwicke’s take on the film was “limited.”  He wasn’t too disappointed to see her go, and even suggested Kathryn Bigelow (Point Break) to take over.  Not too bad a choice, in my opinion, but can she handle the emotional resonance?  Maybe.

I also heard Hardwicke was difficult to work with, but you can say that about a lot of directors, to be honest.  But she’s off the film, and Summit needs to find a new director as soon as possible,  We’ll update you on who that person is, plus any other New Moon news, when it hits!

Source: Ain’t It Cool News