Just last week, Colin Trevorrow exited as director on Star Wars: Episode IX over creative differences. The film left a small void that didn’t need to be filled in a hurry considering that Star Wars: The Last Jedi hasn’t been released yet. Now, that void has been filled. By none other than Star Wars: The Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams.
Lucasfilm hasn’t had a stable directing force ever since it was acquired by Disney. But they’ve been able to see three films all the way through with three directors. Abrams with The Force Awakens; Gareth Edwards – to a certain point – with Rouge One: A Star Wars Story, and Rian Johnson with the upcoming Star Wars: The Last Jedi. In the past Josh Trank was forced out of another of the spinoffs due to his behind the scenes antics; Phil Lord and Chris Miller were let go due to creative differences on the still untitled Han Solo spinoff; and the same with Trevorrow on Episode IX. So let’s take a look at who will be joining the Star Wars director, below.
Variety says in addition to directing, Abrams will be co-writing the script with Argo scribe Chris Terrio.
Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy said this of the announcement in a release posted on the official website:
“With The Force Awakens, J.J. delivered everything we could have possibly hoped for, and I am so excited that he is coming back to close out this trilogy.”
Lucasfilm pretty much found a replacement for Episode IX just as fast as they got Ron Howard to replace Lord and Miller on the Han Solo spinoff. But they weren’t exactly in a rush to find one either. For one thing, Han Solo was nearly complete as opposed to Episode IX which has yet to begin production or receive a script. Because Lucasfilm and Trevorrow could not agree on the vision of the film, sources say it was best that they parted ways now than get further along into pre-production. Which was probably for the best as no one wants a repeat of the Han Solo scenario.
Before Abrams was hired, many had hoped that Johnson would take the helm. Considering he was already directing The Last Jedi, he had the momentum, making him the perfect candidate. Other names that hopefuls threw out were Ava DuVernay, Patty Jenkins, Michelle MacLaren, and Edgar Wright.
Abrams is an excellent choice but also a very safe one. For one thing, Lucasfilm knows what they can get from Abrams, plus he has a genuine camaraderie with the cast which he assembled for The Force Awakens. And because he is in such good standing with Lucasfilm, he has a little bit more leeway and can tell the kind of story he wants to tell while also staying true to the spirit of Star Wars. And let’s not forget, it was actually rumored that Disney wanted Abrams for Episode IX back in 2015 before The Force Awakens was released.
Of course, we will update you with more information as it comes along.
[Source: Star Wars | Variety]