Jon M. Chu is no longer directing Willow pilot for the Disney + series – Deadline

Crazy Rich Asians and In the heights director Jon M. Chu has stepped down as pilot of the upcoming Disney + series, willow.

The filmmaker announced his release on Monday afternoon, noting he was “heartbroken” to walk away from the project.

“With the production schedule shifting due to continued lockdowns in the UK, and with a new baby coming in this summer (surprise!), The timing just won’t work for me and my family,” Chu wrote in a statement. “As you may know, willow has been one of my favorite movies since I was a kid, so I’m devastated that I can’t work with my old and new heroes like Kathy, Ron, Jon, Wendy, Michelle and the amazing actors and crew they put together.

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In October 2020, Disney + announced that Chu would be directing the series pilot. The announcement of the new Disney + series, directed by Ron Howard from a story by George Lucas, came almost 18 months after the announcement of the series ‘development for the’ 80s film.

The fantasy film starred Warwick Davis as a reluctant farmer who plays a pivotal role in protecting a special baby from a tyrannical queen who swears to destroy her and take over the world. Val Kilmer, Joanne Whalley, Jean Marsh and Billy Barty also performed.

Chu was slated to become an executive producer with showrunners Jonathan Kasdan (Solo) and Wendy Mericle (The arrow). However, Chu now says he can’t wait to “see this magical new world unfold as a very enthusiastic fan”.

Erin Kellyman, Cailee Spaeny and Ellie Bamber are set to star in the new Disney + series, which will begin production in Wales, where the original film was filmed.

Jonathan Kasdan wrote the pilot. Ron Howard, also returns as executive producer of the series with Bob Dolman, screenwriter of the original film, as consulting producer. Kathleen Kennedy, Michelle Rejwan, Jonathan Kasdan, Wendy Mericle will also serve as executive producers, with Roopesh Parekh and Hannah Friedman as co-executive producers with Julia Cooperman as producer.

See Chu’s full statement below.

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