Director for Star Wars: Episode VII Announced
by Meagan Cole
Anyone interested in movies and pop culture is aware of the recent developments regarding the timeless Sci-Fi series, Star Wars. Nerds and geeks across the globe were awestruck by the news last October, when George Lucas signed the rights to Star Wars over to Disney for $4.05 billion. Instantly questions were raised regarding the making of the final three episodes in the trilogy of trilogies. Lucas acknowledged, at the time, that Episode VII was on schedule for production and release, but, with Lucas and Steven Speilberg now only consultants for the billion-dollar franchise, who Disney would employ as director was a mystery.
Several rumors flourished and names dropped including Joss Whedon (the Avengers, Serenity) Ben Affleck (Argo, Good Will Hunting), and Matthew Vaughn (Kick-Ass, X-Men: First Class) until the official announcement was released on January 24th. Sources confirmed across several major newspapers and media journals such as The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, and Chicago Tribune that J. J. Abrams will direct Star Wars: Episode VII.
J. J. Abrams is a veteran as far as Sci-Fi films go, having directed Armageddon, Cloverfield, Star Trek, and Super 8. He’s also known for being the co-creator and executive producer for major television series such as Lost and Fringe, as well as a two-time Oscar winning screenwriter (Little Miss Sunshine, Toy Story 3). Lucas and Speilberg highly approve of J. J. Abrams as Disney’s choice director, having maintained a friendship and positive working relationship with him in the past. However, avid fans who acknowledge the clear distinction between Star Trek and Star Wars are somewhat concerned that having the same man direct both series will cause too much overlap stylistically where there ought to be none. J. J. Abrams and his agents have yet to address the press.
Star Wars: Episode VII is currently planned to hit theaters in 2015, followed by Episodes VIII and IX. Disney has also green-lighted George Lucas’ original vision for Episode VII; the episode will begin approximately 20-30 years after Return of the Jedi when the Republic is being restored. However, only the favorite robot duo, C-3PO and R2-D2, out of the original cast from Episodes IV-VI are definitely reappearing onscreen at present. Other appearances could possibly include 60-70 year old versions of Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), Han Solo (Harrison Ford), and Princess Leia (Carrie Fischer).