UPDATED: As expected, the release date for Star Wars Episode IX has been officially pushed to December 20th, 2019.
J.J. Abrams is back. Last week, it was announced that Colin Trevorrow (Safety Not Guaranteed, Jurassic World) had exited the director’s chair on Star Wars: Episode IX. Naturally fandom and bloggers alike ran rampant with speculation about who might takeover. Would Star Wars: The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson simply stay on for the next film? Perhaps maybe Lucasfilm regulars like Joe Johnston, Tony Gilroy, or Lawrence Kasdan might step in? Could Kathleen Kennedy defy all odds and finally get Steven Spielberg to direct one of these?
It turns out the simplest answer is the true one: J.J. Abrams. The Super 8 director began this new trilogy of sequels, launching a new era of Star Wars in the process. Since helming 2015’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Abrams has kept busy as a producer, overseeing various TV shows, as well as the latest installments in the Mission: Impossible and Star Trek franchises.
On the directing front, however, he’s remained wide open. Toss in the fact that he already knows the cast, the crew, the characters, and the world better than almost anyone? Well, he was a shoe-in. This turn of events comes as no surprise, but it’s a reassuring move to fans. Whatever problems there are at Lucasfilm, we already know that Abrams can deliver a successful Star Wars adventure without getting the axe like Gareth Edwards, Josh Trank, Phil Lord, and Chris Miller.
Kathleen Kennedy on Abrams’ return…
“I am so excited that he is coming back to close out this trilogy. 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.”
Screenwriter Chris Terrio (Argo, Justice League) is also on board and will rewrite the existing script alongside Abrams. At this time, the film’s existing May 24th, 2019 release date remains intact. Whether or not the remains the case will likely depend heavily on how much Abrams & Terrio rework the screenplay.
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