More trouble for Pride and Prejudice and Zombies as it loses its director
UPDATE - Lionsgate claims the story below is not true and that Craig Gillespie has not left PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES. They claim all is well and production is moving ahead as scheduled. Who to believe? Time shall tell...
PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES has had a long, hard road to the big screen. Since being picked up in 2009, the project has had Natalie Portman as a star, then lost Natalie Portman as a star (she still remains attached as a producer) and had directors coming and going. First David O. Russell was attached to direct but he quickly got distracted and left. Mike White was the next director to sign on to the film and he was gone shortly thereafter as well. Then FRIGHT NIGHT director Craig Gillespie was attached to direct but today comes word that he too has left the project, leaving the film unlikely to make its January start date.
It's unclear why Gillespie left the project as just a few weeks back, while he was promoting FRIGHT NIGHT, he was talking openly about the film. One possibility brought up by Twitch Film, who broke the news this morning, is that the inability to find a suitable leading lady led to Gillespie's departure. Word is they talked to Mila Kunis, Emma Stone, Mia Wasikowska, Rooney Mara and Olivia Wilde but they all turned down the part. Perhaps Gillespie, sensing a longer development than he wanted, decided to walk rather than wait.
So where does the film go from here? At various times, Mike Newell and Neil Marshall were attached to the project and it's a possibility that Lionsgate could return to one of those names for a director. Or it's possible that they toss the script they have now and start completely from scratch.