‘Star Wars: Episode 9’ Will Not Be Directed by J.J. Abrams
Amid today’s flurry of new stills and details from Star Wars: The Force Awakens, you may have missed one little nugget of news. J.J. Abrams has confirmed that he will not be returning to direct Star Wars: Episode 9 following Rian Johnson’s work on Episode 8. What remains unconfirmed is whether Lucasfilm is eyeing Jurassic World director Colin Trevorrow for the gig.
In an interview with EW about The Force Awakens, Abrams confirmed that he will not return, despite reports a few months back that Disney and Lucasfilm really wanted him to:
No, I’m not going to direct Episode IX, as much as I am deeply envious of anyone who gets to work with this group of people on the future movies.
With each film helmed by a different director, Lucasfilm exec Kathleen Kennedy says that the installments allow each person to leave their individual mark:
We know where we’re going, but only in the broadest sense. When Rian [Johnson] came in and started writing his script, he started from scratch, other than knowing what we had done in Episode VIII and projecting out where it was going. He then sat down and put pen to paper, and it’s 100 percent him.
Johnson is officially prepping Episode 8, while the director’s chair remains vacant for Episode 9. During Comic-Con, a rumor began circulating that Trevorrow had been offered the job, though Disney and Lucasfilm have yet to acknowledge that rumor.
It seems like a solid approach: each installment headed by a different director with their own distinct approach, ultimately delivering a cohesive but exciting trilogy of films. And it may be for the best that Abrams exits after The Force Awakens, not only allowing him to focus on new projects (and hopefully something original), but avoiding potential complaints that the new Star Wars films are too same-y.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens hits theaters on December 18.
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