'Bridesmaids' director drops out of helming 'Bridget Jones 3'
Studio still eyeing January start for the film
"Bridesmaids" helmer Paul Feig has decided against directing "Bridget Jones 3", following a period in which he developed the most recent script alongside Universal and Working Title with an eye toward getting behind the camera. Nevertheless, the studio is still looking to go into production on the film in January with Renee Zellwegger, Colin Firth and Hugh Grant reprising their roles from the first two movies.
According to Deadline, which broke the news, Universal is now on the lookout for a British director to take the reins, an angle which apparently factored into their and Feig's mutual decision not to collaborate on the project.
Any ideas from readers on Brit filmmakers who might be a good fit for the project?
The well-reviewed first film grossed over $280 million worldwide (over $70 million of that domestically), while its 2004 sequel "Edge of Reason" made nearly as much despite not being well-received by critics. Given that there's been a seven-year gap since the last movie, the studio really needs to pick a fresh up-and-comer like Feig to get audiences excited again.
Author Helen Fielding, who wrote the bestselling novels on which the first two films were based, is currently writing the third book in the series, though it's unclear whether the next movie will serve as a direct adaptation. The London Evening Standard reported Fielding's statement at a reading earlier this year that the third novel would partially focus on the title character suffering a "mid thirties baby crisis".
Luckily for Universal, which distributed "Bridesmaids", Feig isn't straying from the nest anytime soon; he currently has two other projects set up at the studio, including an untitled Jon Hamm/Melissa McCarthy comedy being produced by Judd Apatow.