This is quite the sad news, as Guillermo Del Toro is a terrific director. I think he could’ve made a better film than the CGI-a-thon Lord of the Ring trilogy. Honestly, Guillermo is a better director than Peter — and we feel would’ve done something of interest to the Hobbit. But due to the nebulous financial woes of MGM, and the big fat ego of Peter Jackson — we hope Guillermo Del Toro continues on to films that are in a style of his own.
Last week, del Toro, who directed “Pan’s Labyrinth,” “Blade II” and the two “Hellboy” movies, told journalists the “Hobbit” films, which have been plagued by delays, still hadn’t been given the go ahead. “There cannot be any start dates until the MGM situation gets resolved,” del Toro said. “They do hold a considerable portion of the rights.” Reports emerged late last year that MGM was teetering on bankruptcy and del Toro said those issues had caught the “Hobbit” films in a “tangled negotiation.”
Guillermo Del Toro announced today that he is no longer directing the two movies based on J.R.R Tolkien’s “The Hobbit”, but will continue to co-write the screenplays. Out of respect to the legions of loyal Tolkien fans, both Guillermo and Peter Jackson wanted to break the news to The One Ring first. They are both committed to protecting The Hobbit and will do everything in their power to ensure the films are everything that the fans want them to be. “In light of ongoing delays in the setting of a start date for filming “The Hobbit,” I am faced with the hardest decision of my life”, says Guillermo. “After nearly two years of living, breathing and designing a world as rich as Tolkien’s Middle Earth, I must, with great regret, take leave from helming these wonderful pictures. I remain grateful to Peter, Fran and Philippa Boyens, New Line and Warner Brothers and to all my crew in New Zealand. I’ve been privileged to work in one of the greatest countries on earth with some of the best people ever in our craft and my life will be forever changed. The blessings have been plenty, but the mounting pressures of conflicting schedules have overwhelmed the time slot originally allocated for the project. Both as a co-writer and as a director, I wlsh the production nothing but the very best of luck and I will be first in line to see the finished product. I remain an ally to it and its makers, present and future, and fully support a smooth transition to a new director”. – from theOnering.net