OFFICIAL: Gary Ross Will Not Direct ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’

Director Gary Ross on the set of 'The Hunger Games'

While E! Online examined what was deterring Gary Ross from returning to direct ‘The Hunger Games’ sequel, Catching Fire, Lionsgate and Gary Ross released official press release this morning (Singapore time) as reported by Deadline to announce Gary Ross will not be directing ‘Catching Fire’.

The official press release from director Gary Ross on leaving ‘The Hunger Games’ franchise is as below:

Despite recent speculation in the media, and after difficult but sincere consideration, I have decided not to direct Catching Fire. As a writer and a director, I simply don’t have the time I need to write and prep the movie I would have wanted to make because of the fixed and tight production schedule.

I loved making The Hunger Games – it was the happiest experience of my professional life. Lionsgate was supportive of me in a manner that few directors ever experience in a franchise: they empowered me to make the film I wanted to make and backed the movie in a way that requires no explanation beyond the remarkable results. And contrary to what has been reported, negotiations with Lionsgate have not been problematic. They have also been very understanding of me through this difficult decision.

I also cannot say enough about the people I worked with: Producer Nina Jacobson, a great collaborator and a true friend; the brilliant Suzanne Collins, who entrusted us with her most amazing and important story; the gifted and remarkable Jennifer Lawrence whose performance exceeded my wildest expectations, and the rest of the incredible cast, whom I am proud to call my friends.

To the fans I want to say thank you for your support your faith, your enthusiasm and your trust. Hard as this may be to understand I am trying to keep that trust with you. Thank you all. It’s been a wonderful experience.

Official statement from Lionsgate is as below:

We’re very sorry that Gary Ross has chosen not to direct Catching Fire. We were really looking forward to making the movie with him. He did an incredible job on the first film and we are grateful for his work. This will not be the end of our relationship, as we consider Ross to be part of the Lionsgate family and look forward to working with him in the future.

We are sad to see Gary Ross go for he was certainly very much passionate about ‘The Hunger Games’ and almost like a fan as much as we are.

Lionsgate should already have director(s) lined up though we certainly hope the director will have passion for the franchise. It is certainly going to be incredibly hard to finish up script and casting in order to start filming in August 2012 and release ‘Catching Fire’ on 22 November 2013.

Personally speaking, besides hype, great reviews for a well made movie will certainly help in box office sales too. May the odds be ever in our and Lionsgate’s favour for time is ticking away as we speak.

What are your thoughts on this matter? Tell us in the comments below!

‘The Hunger Games’, rated PG13, was released on 22 March 2012 and is now available in all cinemas islandwide.

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter (@HungerGamesSG) as well as ‘Like’ us on Facebook for the latest updates!

Posted on April 11, 2012, in Catching Fire Movie, The Hunger Games Movie and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

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