At first, Summit announced that Rachelle Lefevre, who plays the villain Victoria in the first two movies, had “scheduling conflicts” and opted for the role to be recast for Eclipse, the third movie. Bryce Dallas Howard, from Manderlay and Terminator Salvation, nabbed the part.
Fans went into a rage ("Rachelle is the ONLY Victoria!!!”) that recalled similar protests when Summit considered replacing Taylor Lautner in the sequels because he was deemed too young. (He ultimately stayed on.) Sure enough, Lefevre chimed in with a statement to Access Hollywood that sent countless Twitter accounts into militant protest.
“I turned down several other film opportunities and, in accordance with my contractual rights, accepted only roles that would involve very short shooting schedules,” she said. “Although the production schedule for Eclipse is over three months long, Summit said they had a conflict during those 10 days and would not accommodate me.”
In an unusually pointed response, Summit, still relatively new to Hollywood, shot back with puzzling vigor. “We at Summit Entertainment are disappointed by Rachelle Lefevre’s recent comments which attempt to make her career choices the fault of the studio,” the studio said.
#Bringbackrachelle promptly shot up the Twitter trending topics, and THR laid out the unenviable position Summit has put itself in: Does the studio just ride it out, or do they buckle to the fans’ demands and fire Howard? Ego clashes like this are classic Hollywood, but rarely do they go down so publicly. This will be a fun one to watch.
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