May 31 2010, 10:27am
So ends the chance for something extraordinary ...
Look, Iím sure when and if these films get made they will be Ďgoodí. Good enough. Theyíll segue into the original films competently enough, theyíll have the odd bravura scene of stunning sfx. But deep down, we all know The Hobbit lucked out when Guillermo took this on. I canít think of a more perfect choice of director ticking all three boxes of: a) an innate understanding of horror & fantasy b) soulful reverence to the source material and c) artistic vision; and as much as I donít want to put a dampener on where things go from here, I canít help it either, because sadly you wonít get that combination again. Two out of the three, maybe. Two & a half, at a push.
As for the replacements being touted? Jackson, on present form Iím not convinced could match his trilogy, nor would he want to as he's said countless times he sees no satisfaction in competing with himself. Cuaron, a huge talent in his own right, should not become "second dibbs" and as a close friend of Del Toro would forever be a reminder of the man he had replaced; nor is he, first and foremost, a fantasy director. And Scott? Heís got the minor matter of an Alien prequel to attend to in case anyoneís forgotten, or hasnít recently made a trip out to the multiplex to sit through Robin Hood Ö
My money goes on Raimi. His visual style of late, especially in the phenomenally rewatchable Drag Me To Hell reminds me more of earlier Peter Jackson than anything: the gross-out horror, askew camera angles, wondrously OTT theatrics. Heíd nail the Mirkwood spiders and give the movies ample scares. Heís also a director who, for the most part (Spidey 3, excepted) balances character and big spectacle action well. So perhaps, (i.e: a BIG perhaps, and still one hoping that McGuire gets nowhere near the Bilbo gig) what with the unhappy severance from the Spiderman franchise, this could be his triumphant return to the big blockbuster arena? We shall see.
For all the inevitable conjecture about whoíll eventually take over, Iíd also like to celebrate the simple fact of Guillermoís artistic vistas widening overnight. Thatís a massive plus for all of us. It means that heíll be free to pursue the smaller scale projects AND the bigger ones, the intimate and the outrageous, the Lovecraft and the madness, and Iíll be cheering him on with the certainty I know him slightly better than before the Hobbit debacle, and Iíll tell you why: A couple of months (or few pages back) ago, I made a (slightly) narky post likening the interminable delays to Groundhog day. I wasnít fully up to speed with the MGM situation either, so when Guillermo showed up in the thread, I could have reasonably expected a tongue-lashing for a bout of fanboy petulance, not least for the factual inaccuracies.
Instead, GDT expressed his empathy. His empathy with us, when the one who deserved it most was him. Might seem trivial, but Iíll always remember that as the mark of the man, and in many ways because of it, Iíll always wish him ten times more love, best wishes ( & empathy) in future personal projects we all know will be weird wonderful expressions of that unique creative mind. Hereís to hoping that creature notebook of his is soon bursting at the seams again. Heresís to raising up the glass. And hereís to saying without a word of dewy eyed hyperbole The Hobbit just lost a towering talent - and soul.
Gods (and monsters) bless him in everything he does.
(This post was edited by DamienEngland on May 31 2010, 10:33am)