You'll recall a few weeks before Darren Aronofsky took the gig for "The Wolverine," then colloquially known as "Wolverine 2," several high-profile directors were in contention for the job -- or at least in discussions -- and one of those filmmaker was "Twilight: Eclipse" and "30 Days Of Night" director David Slade (other names included Robert Schwentke and allegedly Matt Reeves and Tony Scott, to name a few).
Well, that came and went, and Aronofsky got the gig that we all know is a stand-alone picture and thankfully won't have anything to do with Gavin Hood's "X-Men Origins: Wolverine," which was so poor we assumed it would have killed the Hugh Jackman-led franchise.
But in a recent interview, Slade all but says he had the gig -- or at least that's the way we're reading it -- but then Aronofsky became interested and he was slowly pushed out of the frame. Though note, he does not sound bitter at all and he likens the scenario to an ex-girlfriend showing up and then knowing when to fold 'em.
“There are meetings that you get to the point where you’re about to start out work on something and then everything shifts and the world falls from beneath your feet. The process of getting a feature film, getting [it] green-lit unless you’re one of the very, very, very, very, very, select few people is actually very complicated. Takes a lot of your time," he told HitFix. "The Wolverine” was like that, I had a great meeting with Hugh Jackman. We were all ready to go and then Darren Aronofsky, who has a great relationship with Hugh, showed up. You kind of feel like: “well, the girlfriend’s come back. I can either put up a fight here or I can just let nature take its course.”
Sounds like the smart, mature play, frankly. Obviously Jackman and Aronofsky worked on "The Fountain" together and when a trust and relationship has been established...well it's hard to compete with that. Slade mentions in the interview that he has three possible film directing gigs he can choose from, but he doesn't give a lot of information. One is "small. It’s very interesting, an amazing writer," he says. Another is "large. It’s very interesting. It’s one of those kind of genre defining films that comes along every now and again. I’d be lucky to be doing it," he admits. And finally, "one is just a really gritty, angry film which would be great for me to do as well."
No details are provided as Slade is obviously playing his cards close to the vest. He does mention talking with Guillermo del Toro about some kind of collaboration in the future, but nothing sounds like it's crystallized quite yet. Aronofsky shoots "The Wolverine" next spring and the next few months will probably reveal which gig is ready to go forward for Slade.