Francis Lawrence is Lionsgate’s choice to direct ‘Catching Fire’
As we reported before, Lionsgate had narrowed its list of potential Catching Fire directors to two: Francis Lawrence and Bennet Miller. The Hollywood Reporter has now exclusively revealed, through, undisclosed sources, that Lionsgate has made a decision and they want Francis Lawrence to direct Catching Fire. Lawrence is suppose to receive an official offer today (April 19), if he accepts, he’ll be in charge of the sequel to The Hunger Games.
Sources say that Lawrence will receive an official offer this afternoon. If he accepts and a deal can be worked out, he will replace Gary Ross, who directed the first installment of the hugely successful franchise.
The hunt had been a fast and furious one, with the field narrowing down to Lawrence, the director of I Am Legend and Water for Elephants, and Bennett Miller, the director of the acclaimed Brad Pitt baseball movie Moneyball. Both directors met with the studio today, according to sources, and Lionsgate executives have made their pick.
Lawrence was deemed the front-runner by observers simply because of his open schedule. Miller is working his way to a December start for Foxcatcher, a true-life project centering John Du Pont that has been his focus for several years.
One question that Lawrence’s hiring raises is that of the shape of the screenplay. Ross, who is a writer as much as he is a director, worked on the Hunger Games script and was planning on spending two months honing Fire, working on a script previously penned by Simon Beaufoy. The producers and new director can keep working with Beaufoy or hire new scribes to hammer out words.
We’ll wait for official confirmation!