Kristen Stewart, the star of “Snow White and the Huntsman,” the action-fantasy hit from 2012, has been dropped from the upcoming sequel.
Instead, “The Huntsman” will be an origin story of sorts that focuses on Chris Hemsworth's character, Eric, and the evil queen Ravenna, played by Charlize Theron, before they ever met Stewart's Snow White. Universal announced today that the film is slated for release April 22, 2016.
“Snow White and the Huntsman” was a $396 million worldwide hit for Universal but a public relations disaster for Stewart. Though she was dating Robert Pattinson during filming, photos of her embracing her married director, Rupert Sanders, caused a major scandal. In an open letter, Stewart later apologized for what she called “a momentary indiscretion.” Sanders and his wife, model Liberty Ross, finalized their divorce last month.
Sanders will also not be returning to “The Huntsman.” He's been replaced by writer-director Frank Darabont (“The Shawshank Redemption”).