Peter Jackson has confirmed that he'll step in to replace Guillermo del Toro as director of The Hobbit if it means the film will be made.
The Lord of the Rings and King Kong helmer spoke to The Dominion Post of New Zealand, who have quoted him as saying, "If that's what I have to do to protect Warner Bros' investment, then obviously that's one angle which I'll explore," But also spoke of how stepping in as director would be difficult, as he has signed contracts with other studios to helm productions for them - including the Tin Tin sequel at Paramount and Dreamworks.
I get the impression, and some others are the same, that Jackson would love to revisit middle earth, while Warner Bros would also kill to get him there. No other top-drawer helmers are being mooted, as it would involve living in New Zealand for at least four years while the production geared up and shot. A gorgeous country it may be, it's still a massive commitment.