Jimmy Hayward (director of the animated Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who) has signed on to direct the Warner Bros. western Jonah Hex, based on the DC Comics character, which marks his live-action debut.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Josh Brolin is attached to star in the film, which previously had Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor (Crank) on board as directors. The duo, who also wrote the script, bowed out over creative differences in November. The studio, which hopes to put the movie into production in March or April, went on a fast-track search, putting together a short list that included such names as Andy Fickman and McG before narrowing it down to Hayward.

The character of Hex, known for having the right side of his face disfigured and wearing a Confederate army uniform, was a rough-and-tumble gunslinger and part-time bounty hunter whose adventures always ended in blood. One incarnation of his comic book series saw the Western genre combined with supernatural elements, and it's this aspect that was featured in Neveldine and Taylor's script. The studio will likely keep the script, though it's expected that Hayward will put his stamp on it.

Related: EXCLUSIVE: Josh Brolin Talks Jonah Hex Sequel

Production will begin in March or April.

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