Elizabeth Banks will not be directing Pitch Perfect 3. According to Variety sources, Banks’ increasingly packed schedule has made it difficult to continue in her role as director. Although no specific projects were mentioned, the separation is said to be "amicable."
The actress still plans to reprise her role as Gail in the third movie. Banks will also continue as producer, along with Paul Brooks and Scott Niemyer of Gold Circle Films.
This week Universal pushed back the release date of Pitch Perfect 3 from July 21, 2017 to December 22, 2017. Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson and Brittany Snow have all signed on for the next film.
Last spring, Banks made her feature film directing debut with Pitch Perfect 2, which grossed $287 million worldwide. Entertainment Weekly noted that it was the second highest grossing opening for a female director.
Update: During a panel discussion, Banks explained her choice:
“We’ve been in development and it’s taking longer than we thought. I thought I was going to direct the movie in the summer. It was really important to me to direct the movie in summer because if we pushed into fall it bumped up against my parental responsibilities, which made me feel uncomfortable.”