'Star Wars' Episode IX Gets New Director
James Finney | Contributing Writer
J.J Abrams is officially back on board to direct the last entry in the current Star Wars trilogy, “Star Wars: Episode 9.” This news comes after a string of Star Wars directors, including Phil Lord, Christopher Miller and Colin Trevorrow, have been replaced or dropped for several films.
Trevorrow is the former director of Episode IX. He signed onto the film back in August 2015, shortly after the release of his blockbuster hit, “Jurassic World,” which grossed over $1.6 billion. Lucasfilms announced on Sept. 7, however, that Trevorrow would be leaving the project.
Lucasfilm made an official statement saying, “Colin has been a wonderful collaborator throughout the development process but we have all come to the conclusion that our visions for the process differ.” A similar explanation was offered when Miller and Lord were removed from the Han Solo film earlier this year. However, rumors abound as to why Trevorrow and the other young upstarts have been removed from the set.
Some suggest that personality clashes with Kathleen Kennedy, president of Lucasfilm, had something to do with it. The go-to theory is that Trevorrow, Miller and Lord were too young and brash to work within the confines of a team like Lucas Films. All three directors are known for their recent successes. Both Miller and Lord were the masterminds behind “21 Jump Street” and “The Lego Movie.” The two critically acclaimed films solidified the directing duo’s reputation in the film industry.
The mounting dismissal of directors for the Star Wars films has left a lot of fans feeling nervous before they even come out. The seating of J.J. Abrams in the director’s chair, however, might offer a ray of hope to some.
Abrams reintroduced Star Wars to the world when he directed, produced and co-wrote “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” back in 2015. This time Abrams will be co-writing the script for Episode IX alongside Chris Terrio, writer of the critically acclaimed film “Argo” and the much more controversial film “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.”
“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,” Kennedy said, on the return of Abrams.
Kennedy and Abrams, however, haven’t always gotten along. There were disputes between the two of them during the production of “The Force Awakens.” Despite this, the film grossed over $2 billion, making Abrams one of two directors to earn such high dividends for a film, right beside James Cameron. The film has received some criticisms for being formulaic and too similar to the original Star Wars film, Episode IV.
It’s true that “The Force Awakens” was noticeably similar to Episode IV, but it wasn’t a complete facsimile, and Abrams is no dummy. If Episode IX opened to the eclipsing shadow of a second, half-completed Starkiller Base, fans would walk out on the spot. Abrams might seem like a safe choice to many, but given his credentials and love of the Star Wars films, he might just be the right choice.