Kenny Ortega and Zac EfronThe remake of 'Footloose' will have to dance on without 'High School Musical' director Kenny Ortega at the helm. Over the weekend, Ortega departed the production after disagreeing with Paramount Pictures on tone and budget, Variety reports.

Ortega reportedly wanted elaborately-staged musical numbers and a budget north of $30 million, while Paramount was holding out for an "edgier" drama and a budget of no more than $25 million. Paramount will begin looking for a new director immediately. Kenny Ortega and Zac EfronThe remake of 'Footloose' will have to dance on without 'High School Musical' director Kenny Ortega at the helm. Over the weekend, Ortega departed the production after disagreeing with Paramount Pictures on tone and budget, Variety reports.

Ortega reportedly wanted elaborately-staged musical numbers and a budget north of $30 million, while Paramount was holding out for an "edgier" drama and a budget of no more than $25 million. Paramount will begin looking for a new director immediately.

Perhaps the departure of star Zac Efron, who'd worked with Ortega on all three 'High School Musical' films, was another reason for Ortega to call it quits. Efron bailed on the project in March; 'Gossip Girl' heartthrob Chace Crawford is now slated to take over the role of a small-town rebel, made famous by Kevin Bacon. Julianna Hough of 'Dancing With the Stars' was recently cast as the female lead after wowing producers with her audition.

Ortega's current film 'This is It,' compiled from the footage of Michael Jackson's rehearsals for his tour, opens this week to what is expected to be monster ticket sales.

Ortega's office issued this statement about his decision to walk away from 'Footloose': "Coming off the extraordinary project, Michael Jackson's 'This Is It' director Kenny Ortega has decided it is premature for him to commit to his next film and will not be moving forward with 'Footloose' as previously reported."
CATEGORIES Movies