According to Deadline, Guillermo del Toro has backed out of directing Warner Bros.’ Beauty, a live-action “revisionist” version of—what else—Beauty And The Beast. We first reported on this in 2011, back when del Toro was just a lowly producer on the project. Since then, he became the director and then stopped being the director, but he’s reportedly still “firmly part of the movie,” so it will probably still feature a little bit of his personal brand of weirdo gothic horror. Emma Watson is apparently still attached to star, presumably as the Beast, with a yet-to-be-cast beautiful man starring opposite her.
This news comes about a week after Disney announced that it had hired The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn’s Bill Condon to direct their own live-action Beauty And The Beast, suggesting that even del Toro, director of such crazy shit as Pan’s Labyrinth and the Hellboy movies, is afraid of taking on Mickey Mouse. Either that or he just has other stuff to do. We’ll never know.
Deadline says Warner Bros. is still searching for a new director, so hopefully Peyton Reed isn’t too busy.