Confirming yesterday's initial report, Summit Entertainment announced this evening that David Slade will direct "The Twilight Saga: Eclipse," the third installment in the blockbuster "Twilight" franchise.

This follows a long search which included the studio's flirtation with "The Orphanage's" Juan Antonio Bayona and a number of other prominent Hollywood filmmakers.  Chris Weitz is helming the next installment, "The Twilight Saga: New Moon," which is currently shooting in Vancouver, B.C. with returning stars Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner as well as new cast members Daktoa Fanning and Michael Sheen.

On the news of Slade's hiring, the studio quoted "Twilight" author Stephanie Meyer saying, “I am thrilled that David Slade will be directing 'Eclipse.' He's a visionary filmmaker who has so much to offer this franchise. From the beginning, we've been blessed with wonderful directorial talent for the Twilight Saga, and I'm so happy that 'Eclipse' will be carrying on with that tradition.”

Summit President of Production Erik Feig added, “Stephenie Meyer's 'Eclipse' is a muscular, rich, vivid book and we at Summit looked long and hard for a director who could do it justice.  We believe we have found that talent in David Slade, a director who has been able to create complex, visually arresting worlds.  We cannot wait to see the 'Eclipse' he brings to life and brings to the fans eagerly awaiting its arrival in summer of 2010.”

Filmmaker Slade came to prominence as a director for his work on 2006’s engrossing film "Hard Candy" starring Academy Award Nominated actress Ellen Page as well as directing 2007’s genre hit "30 Days of Night."

The official synopsis for "The Twilight Saga: Eclipse" is as follows: In 'Eclipse,' Bella once again finds herself surrounded by danger as Seattle is ravaged by a string of mysterious killings and a malicious vampire continues her quest for revenge.  In the midst of it all, she is forced to choose between her love for Edward and her friendship with Jacob — knowing that her decision has the potential to ignite the ageless struggle between vampire and werewolf.  With her graduation quickly approaching, Bella is confronted with the most important decision of her life.

Earlier today, Summit released the first official photo of the "Wolfpack" from "New Moon."

"The Twilight Saga: Eclipse" will begin filming this fall in anticipation of a June 30, 2010 release date.  "The Twilight Saga: New Moon" will hit theaters this Nov. 20.