Since Disney signed on "Toy Story 3" writer Michael Arndt to pen the screenplay for the highly anticipated "Star Wars: Episode VII," the conversation has understandably turned to who would be the best director to helm the first new film in the series in a decade. We've already heard such nerd-favorites as "Star Trek: Into Darkness" director J.J. Abrams have turned down the awesome responsibility, and now it seems we can add "Pan's Labyrnth" filmmaker Guillermo Del Toro's name to the ever growing list of talent who have said no to taking on one of the biggest movie franchises ever.
While Del Toro had denied in the past that he'd had any conversations with "Episode VII" producers, he revealed in a new interview with movie site The Playlist that he was in fact approached for the job.
"We got one phone call to my agent saying, 'Is Guillermo interested?' And basically I have so much stuff already of my own, and I'm pursuing stuff that I'm generating already..." Del Toro said, explaining he was ultimately forced to turn the work down.
The notoriously ambitious filmmaker said his plate was just too full already to take on the task, but that he was excited to be approached for the film.
"It was very flattering," he said, adding: "It was just a phone call, it didn't go past that, it was very nice to be asked, but believe it or not, I'm busy enough."
Don't expect Del Toro direct any of the other possible spinoff films, either, the filmmaker said.
Of course, just because he won't be making the upcoming films doesn't mean Del Toro doesn't have an opinion on who should direct. He revealed he believes the series requires a director who can dedicate their self entirely to the franchise.
"I think the fans deserve somebody that is just going to immerse themselves completely. As a geek, I would have loved to see Brad Bird take it," he said.
Of course, as you may know, Bird already announced he wouldn't be involved in the films, either.
Numerous directing candidates have been thrown around in connection to "Episode VII," with everyone from David Fincher, to "Tron Legacy" director Joseph Kosinski, and "Safety Not Guaranteed" director Colin Trevorrow, who recently revealed he also won't be taking the job.
With Del Toro, Bird, Abrams, and Trevorrow officially out the running, it looks like Matthew Vaughn may be among the top directors vying for the project. Collider is reporting that "Kick-Ass" director Matthew Vaughn is in talks with Lucasfilm to helm "Star Wars: Episode VII."
"My sources tell me this is the main reason he dropped out of the 'X-Men' sequel," reported Collider.
The site notes if Vaughn is being lined up by Disney to helm the film, it's likely a similar contract to the agreement director Marc Web signed while directing the newest, "Spider Man." Most likely a film-by-film basis, "with the assumption that if the first film is a success and he wants to come back, he could," said Collider.
Vaughn has also directed "Stardust," "Layer Cake," and "X-Men: First Class."
Speaking in a radio interview with ABC News, film producer Kathleen Kennedy said pre-production for "Episode VII" would begin in spring 2013, and seemed to hint that Disney would announce the director for "Episode VII" in January.
"I have no immediate update, but hopefully in January I'll have something that I can say," Kennedy told ABC News Radio.