Another disturbance in…the director’s chair! I a brief statement Lucasfilm announced that director Colin Trevorrow will not be directing Star Wars Episode IX after all.
“Lucasfilm and Colin Trevorrow have mutually chosen to part ways on ‘Star Wars: Episode IX,’” Disney said in a statement. “Colin has been a wonderful collaborator throughout the development process but we have all come to the conclusion that our visions for the project differ. We wish Colin the best and will be sharing more information about the film soon.”
The move is the latest in a thread that resembles the admirals trying to keep Darth Vader happy in Empire Strikes Back..one by one, they fall unconscious to the cutting room floor, only it seems that long time producer Kathleen Kennedy is the one doing the squeezing.
First came the extensive reshoots on Rogue One when director Gareth Edwards was discovered to have secretly directed a grim war movie where everyone dies as opposed to a buoyant Star Wars pic.
Industry veteran Ron Howard, presumably someone who knows how to shoot from a script, stepped in to finish the film, adding characters and doing god knows what else to salvage the project.
UPDATE: Oops I forgot Josh Trank, whose bad behavior (letting his dog wreck his rental home) on the set of a Fantastic Four movie did not meet Star Wars/Disney standards.
And now Trevorrow, who was announced in 2015 as the director, and made Jurassic World, which was a hit, and The Book of Henry, which wasn’t.
Reading between the lines, it seems Kennedy and Disney are turning to old reliables who have made movies to move forward with The Most Important Franchise In Film History, as opposed to one hit wonders who come cheap, the most common practice in Hollywood.
The announcement that an Obi-Wan standalone movie was trying to lure Stephen Daldry to direct reveals the, er, direction they are going in. Daldry is a sedate man of middle years who has made films like The Hours, Billy Elliot, The Reader and so on. In other words, the guy is a proven tasteful filmmaker, not some hot shot with a snazzy reel.
I can’t say that I’m crying over this. Trevorrow and Edwards made schlocky genre franchise movies. Looper was an actual good movie, so one guesses that Rian Johnson managed to survive the trial by Vader.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.