Lionsgate has already booked a November 2013 release date for the wildly-anticipated sequel to The Hunger Games, Catching Fire. But might the studio have trouble meeting this deadline?
The question arises because negotiations aren't going smoothly with director Gary Ross, who executives want to return based on the overwhelmingly positive reviews for the first installment of the franchise.
Ross earned $3 million for The Hunger Games - plus back-end profits - and, sources tell The Hollywood Reporter, is angling for a major sequel raise.
All other major players have signed on for both Catching Fire and Mockingjay - from Jennifer Lawrence to Liam Hemsworth - so the only real hold-up at the moment is Ross. The film could always take on a new director, of course, but an insider sees that as unlikely.
"Ultimately, it will be difficult, and yet everybody will do the sane thing, which is to work it out. Everybody will end up unhappy in their own way. It's just the nature of the beast."
UPDATE: Or... not. Ross has dropped out, and the movie will open as scheduled on 11/23/13.