'The Reader' director Stephen Daldry a candidate to direct 'Breaking Dawn'
EXCLUSIVE: Add this name to the list of high-end auteurs who are being considered for the director's chair on "Breaking Dawn": Stephen Daldry.Yep, that Stephen Daldry, the man who directed such Oscar fare as "Billy Elliot," "The Reader" and "The Hours."
Daldry joins a list that includes Sofia Coppola, Bill Condon and Gus Van Sant, all of whom have been approached about taking on the fourth film in the "Twilight" franchise. Like those three, there are not yet indications Daldry would actually take the gig, but the fact that Summit Entertainment, the studio behind the films, has reached out to him suggests where its intentions lie for the fourth film.
By this point nothing should surprise us about the names Summit is considering. (Well, James Cameron would surprise us. But he's pretty much the only one.) The fourth book contains more complicated material as the story opens up (warning: spoiler alert), with part of the novel written from werewolf Jacob's perspective and Kristen Stewart's Bella Swan carrying a child.
Having already gone indie with Catherine Hardwicke, polished/commercial with Chris Weitz and genre auteur with David Slade for the franchise's first three movies, Summit clearly wants a high-end prestige filmmaker to handle the fourth picture.
Still, even by those standards, Daldry stands out. He's been nominated for three Oscars, more than any of the other directors on the short list. In fact, Daldry is the rare filmmaker who's been nominated for a best directing Oscar for every feature he's made.
Those credentials make taking on a global teen phenomenon seem unlikely, though there are reasons to think it could work. The director is well-versed in depicting forbidden love (a "Twilight" staple) with "The Reader" and "The Hours." And he's adept at themes of family alienation, also a franchise fixture, which ran under "Billy Elliot." Also, like most of the others, Daldry doesn't yet have a new film.
The fourth "Twilight" movie -- which will likely take only a piece of "Breaking Dawn" as the film is split into two -- will in all likelihood be shot in the fall. That gives Summit a little more time to comb through high-end directors. Academy Award winners, take note: Vampires and werewolves are coming for you.
-- Steven Zeitchik
Photoa: David Cross and Kate Winslet in "The Reader:" Credit: The Weinstein Company. Stephen Daldry on the set of "Billy Elliot." Credit: Giles Keyte/Universal Pictures
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