Photo Credit: Universal
Mirror mirror on the wall, is Kristen Stewart still the fairest of them all?
The fate of the Snow White and the Huntsman sequel has been up in the air since Stewart, 22, admitted to an affair with the film's married director Rupert Sanders, 41. Obviously, reuniting the director and star for a second film seems out of the question. But can there really be a Snow White movie without Snow White?
That's what some sources are saying. On Tuesday, the Hollywood Reporter ran a story claiming that the Snow White sequel was being "reconceived" to go on without Stewart. According to insiders, the original plan was to make two films focusing on the Snow White character and a third about the huntsman (played by Chris Hemsworth). The sequel was already being written for Stewart when the scandal broke; now, the original screenwriter has been quietly let go while the studio is "exploring options to continue the franchise."
However, conflicting reports have emerged about Stewart's role in the sequel. The Los Angeles Times claims that the second movie is on track, will focus on Hemsworth's character, and could still have a part for Stewart. And People is reporting that no one has officially signed on to Snow White 2 yet, which is moving "on a slower track" while the studio tries to save it.
It would seem that Universal is being forced to make a choice: Should Stewart return to her starring role, or should director Sanders return as director? It's a safe bet that they're both contractually obligated for three films, so the studio could pressure them both into making the next one... if they wanted to deal with the fallout. We're betting that they don't, so who's got to go?
The obvious choice would be keeping Stewart and booting Sanders. Directors on franchises get replaced all the time (hello, Twilight!) without damaging the story. Fans want continuity, and that depends far more on the cast returning than the director coming back.
But maybe Universal is worried that fans won't want to see Stewart return? Now that she's cheated on her beloved Twilight costar and longtime boyfriend Robert Pattinson, has she ruined herself for playing fairy-tale ingenues and triumphant heroines?
Sorry, but no. That's ridiculous.
Angelina Jolie didn't become less of a star because she broke up Brad Pitt's marriage. Ashton Kutcher landed his high-paying Two and a Half Men role while his cheating scandal was unfolding. It's not Hollywood's job to punish cheaters; it's their job to cast good actors in the right roles. Stewart is a very good actress who's still at the beginning of a promising career. Heck, if anyone should be blacklisted on moral grounds, it's the middle-aged married director with two kids! Except that's not really fair, either, because his severe lapse of judgement has nothing to do with his ability to make films.
Stewart and Sanders are two people who made one big mistake, and it's certainly not the most reprehensible thing that the Hollywood elite has ever done. The world will get over it. Even Twilight fans will get over it. And if Stewart's still up for playing Snow White, we say the role belongs to her.