Schumacher commits to "Phantom"

Screen Daily has confirmed that Joel Schumacher will direct the "Phantom of the Opera" film. Warner Bros. Pictures, which owned the film rights until Lloyd Webber recently bought them back, retains the option to distribute the film in North America. Principal photography will begin in the fall in the UK. Casting is to be announced, although Antonio Banderas has long been linked to the project. "I’m thrilled to have the rights back for the film version of Phantom and to have such a brilliant director on board," said Andrew Lloyd Webber, who will produce through his company, Really Useful Films. "We now have the opportunity and the freedom to make the film that Joel and I have always talked about making." Also on Schumacher’s plate is a remake of "A Star is Born".