Getting a mainstream director with somewhat darker/indier sensibilities to revitalize a disgraced pulp franchise has already worked at least once in this decade. So it's not too surprising that 20th Century Fox tapped Darren Aronofsky, of Black Swan and The Wrestler fame, to rescue their Wolverine property after their 2009 attempted blockbuster X-Men Origins: Wolverine met with critical and commercial opprobrium. In fact, it was a pretty cunning move, since fan types would see any Wolverine film anyway and Aronofsky could hypothetically have brought in some much needed critical respect.
But that's all moot now, as Aronofsky has dropped out of the project, explaining:
"As I talked more about the film with my collaborators at Fox, it became clear that the production of The Wolverine would keep me out of the country for almost a year. I was not comfortable being away from my family for that length of time. I am sad that I won't be able to see the project through, as it is a terrific script and I was very much looking forward to working with my friend, Hugh Jackman, again."
Aronofsky's had some family troubles recently, splitting from fiance Rachel Weisz, so maybe that's the whole truth, or maybe the director just dug up some painful memories of The Fountain, his last genre clusterfuck starring Hugh Jackman. Which was a serious clusterfuck indeed. Still, this is a shame, as The Wolverine directed by Darren Aronofsky probably would've been more interesting than The Wolverine directed by whatever hack Fox is likely to put in his chair. (They could always double-down on artiness and hire Lars Von Trier, but I'm not holding my breath.)