Guillermo del Toro leaves ‘The Hobbit’
A very promising production of The Hobbit just hit a major snag. Guillermo del Toro, attached to the project as director for over a year, has apparently left the film. The most likely reason is an inability to negotiate this project with a slate of films Del Toro is contracted to do with Universal. That’s an impressive list itself, including such titles as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Saturn and the End of Days, Frankenstein, and a live-action Pinocchio.
I’d be lying if I said that this news really didn’t seriously deflate my anticipation for The Hobbit, especially with Peter Jackson still hesitant to take the reigns himself. Del Toro gave us the greatest single fantasy film of the last decade in Pan’s Labyrinth, and I got extremely geeked up when I imagined what his Hobbit would be. Jackson is still producing the project and there’s a good chance he’ll get a very qualified director, if he doesn’t indeed end up doing it himself. But I was really hoping that this would be chance for a wide audience to see what Del Toro is capable of in the fantasy genre (those viewers too stubborn to delve into anything with subtitles). I guess with that uber-list of upcoming projects, I’ll get my wish soon enough.