This time, it’s not all about Eve. It’s all about Eve‘s director. Following Matthew Newton’s decision to step down from directing Jessica Chastain in the female assassin film, Tate Taylor, the Oscar-nominated actress’ helmer on The Help, has been tapped as a replacement, EW has learned.
Taylor, who last directed Emily Blunt in The Girl on the Train, is also working with another The Help veteran, Octavia Spencer, on the psychological thriller Ma. Eve marks the second upcoming project he has going with Chastain, the other being The Eyes of Tammy Faye.
An online backlash gathered around Eve when news came that Newton, who plead guilty in 2007 to physically assaulting girlfriend Brooke Satchwell and was later accused of assaulting fiancée Rachael Taylor in 2010, would direct the picture.
“Yesterday I notified Jessica Chastain and the other producers on the film Eve that I will be stepping down as director,” Newton, who suffers from bipolar disorder, said in a statement. “Since the announcement of this film, the responses, which are powerful and important, have not fallen on deaf ears. I am profoundly aware that I have a responsibility to lead where I have failed in the past. I can never undo the harm that I’ve caused the people I’ve cared about and I carry that shame and responsibility with me every day.”
“Over the past eight years,” he continued, “I have been working extensively with healthcare professionals to help me overcome my addiction and mental health illness. For the past six years I have lived a quiet and sober life. All I can do now is try to be a living amends and hopefully contribute to the positive change occurring in our industry.”
Chastain will star in and produce Eve through her Freckle Films banner for Voltage Pictures.
The Hollywood Reporter was the first to report the news.