Clint Eastwood Likely Replacing Steven Spielberg on 'American Sniper' & That's a Good Thing

BySamantha Rullo

Usually when a movie makes headlines with rumors, speculation, or changes, it's because of the actors — who quit, who turned down the role, who really wants the part. It's not often that directors change, as they are usually one of the first people to sign on to a project. American Sniper is a rare case, but it might benefit from the shake-up happening behind the scenes. The film, based on a Navy Seal's autobiography, originally had Steven Spielberg attached to direct, with Bradley Cooper starring. Earlier this month, Spielberg dropped out of the film because of budget issues, and now Clint Eastwood is likely to replace him, Variety reports.

If Eastwood does take on American Sniper, there's nothing to worry about. It's essentially passing the film from one esteemed director to another, and Eastwood's history as a director has primed him to direct this exact kind of movie. Cooper is still to play Chris Kyle, the Navy Seal known as the military's deadliest sniper, with over 160 kills.

While both Spielberg and Eastwood have directed films about war and the military, Eastwood has proved himself best as a director with films that focus on an individual's struggles and achievements, like Million Dollar Baby. Obviously there's a big difference between being a boxer and a sniper, but Eastwood has shown he can effectively direct films that deal with large-scale themes, like war in Letters From Iwo Jima and Flags of Our Fathers, and internal conflict as seen in Gran Torino and The Bridges of Madison County.

Hopefully Eastwood will officially sign onto American Sniper, which has already been marked as a film to be considered during awards season in a few years. Maybe by then Spielberg will have another project to compete with, too.