The moviemaker admits his own children thought he was crazy when he stepped down from the project and allowed Chris Columbus to take over - but he's still convinced he made the right choice.
He tells website Digital Spy, "I just felt that I wasn't ready to make an all-kids movie and my kids thought I was crazy. And the books were by that time popular, so when I dropped out, I knew it was going to be a phenomenon.
"But, you know, I don't make movies because they're gonna to be phenomenons. I make movies because they have to touch me in a way that really commits me to a year, two years, three years of work."