Closure is beautiful, isn’t it? First he wasn’t coming back because Lionsgate was lowballing him. Then he was going to meet with their top brass and possible come back. Now he’s released a statement saying, for sure, that he isn’t coming back and that it’s not because he was lowballed.
He released a little statement explaining:
Despite recent speculation in the media, and after difficult but sincere consideration, I have decided not to direct Catching Fire. As a writer and a director, I simply don’t have the time I need to write and prep the movie I would have wanted to make because of the fixed and tight production schedule.
Makes sense. The film was due to shoot in August and star Jennifer Lawrence is on a short leash because she has to head off to shoot X-Men First Class 2 in January. If Ross wanted more time Lionsgate would have to allow the First Class sequel to go first, which adds another six months to the wait for Catching Fire. And hell, Fox may not even want to push up First Class 2 that much. The only other option would have been to push Catching Fire back to 2014. That would have helped the movie but fans would be discouraged and they’d lose out on any momentum they had.