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GI Joe director fired?

06.11.2009

UPDATE - GI JOE producer Lorenzo diBonvaentura spoke to Latino Review about the report and said, "It's completely untrue. [Stephen Sommers] was never asked to leave or been fired or any of that. Thatís ridiculous. The movie tested very well." You can read his full comment on the matter at Latino Review using the links below.

Our pal (and recent podcast guest) George "El Guapo" Roush from Latino Review dug up a post on producer Don Murphy's message boards claiming that Stephen Sommers, director of GI JOE, was fired from the movie after a test screening returned the worst numbers in the history of Paramount. Now normally I wouldn't put much stock into what a guy on a message board has to say but Guapo says he was able to confirm through various sources that the story is true (and I trust his sources). Here's some of what the original story claims:

Stephen Sommers, the super hack director of the film fired. Removed. Locked out of the editing room. Stuart Baird, a renowned "fixer" editor was brought it to try to see if it could be made releasable. Sommers was then forced by his William Morris agents to pretend that he was working on Tarzan over at Warner Brothers doing design work, even though that film doesn't even have a good script yet. When word of the firing started to be whispered about in Hollywood, Sommers was summoned back to the editing room- but only to save appearances, Baird is still editing the movie with studio input.

It all doesn't bode well for a movie that was already struggling to gain any kind of buzz or traction among young males, the very audience it needs to make any kind of impact. There's obviously much more to the story (including how the project was rushed through pre-production because of the writer's strike), so click here to read for yourself.

Extra Tidbit: Cue studio denial of rumors in 5-4-3....
Source: Latino Review

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