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Paranormal 2 director yanked back by Lionsgate

01.26.2010

Just last week we brought you the news that Paramount had hired SAW VI director Kevin Greutert to direct PARANORMAL ACTIVITY 2. At the time, it was noted that Paramount seemed to be poaching talent from its competing Halloween franchise for its budding franchise. In fact both films were opening on the same date in October. But before the ink could dry on Greutert's contract, Lionsgate has fired back.

The studio essentially has fired David Hackl, the SAW V director who had been slated to direct this year's SAW installment, and has exercised its option on Greutert, making him the new SAW 3D director (and obviously precluding him from directing PARANORMAL 2). Before you think of the obvious, "Why doesn't Paramount just hire Hackl?," Lionsgate has thought of that too. Like Greutert, Hackl is under contract with Lionsgate and he will quickly be assigned to another film at the studio to prevent him from defecting.

In a blog post titled, "Yes Virginia, There is Evil in the World," Greutert said yesterday, "I was told that my metaphor describing my feelings right now was in excessively poor taste, so letís just say Iím pissed." A little detective work realized that the original metaphor Greutert used to describe the situation was, "If you've ever been raped by your dad, then you now how I feel right now." Yeouch. This should make for an interesting shoot.

In a perfect world this would get stuck in a legal quagmire so deep neither film would ever get made, but that's not happening. I'm guessing at this point Paramount will just move on and find someone else to direct their film as they'd like to keep that October release date and any further wranglings with Greutert or Hackl would just delay production and force them out of that date (which is likely what Lionsgate wanted all along).

Extra Tidbit: How about Rob Zombie reboots PARANORMAL?
Source: Deadline

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