Skip to main content

Lucasfilm Turns to J.J. Abrams for 'Episode XI' So They Can Stop Firing Directors

Another director is deemed unworthy to carry the Star Wars mantle and thus has been jettisoned in a space capsule headed directly for the sun. Colin Trevorrow will be replaced by J.J. Abrams as the director and writer of Star Wars IX, Lucasfilm has announced.


"Lucasfilm and Colin Trevorrow have mutually chosen to part ways on Star Wars: Episode IX," read a Lucasfilm 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."

Script problems reportedly plagued Trevorrow and 'XI' causing another headache for Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy. She has had to replace other directors from Star Wars projects so Trevorrow's firing last week became inevitable when the two couldn't find a happy medium. She benched Gareth Edwards on Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and had screenwriter Tony Gilroy do rewrites and reshoots to cobble together a workable film. Chris Miller and Phil Lord were fired in the middle of production for the upcoming Young Han Solo movie and replaced with the steady veteran Ron Howard. With many directors rumored to be candidates to replace Trevorrow, including Star Wars: The Last Jedi's Rian Johnson (who's apparently, quietly keeping his head down and staying drama-free during post-production) the male white director this time would be Abrams again. 

“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,” said Kennedy in a statement.

Since rebooting Disney's $4 billion investment in 2015, Lucasfilm has seen too many "creative differences" with the hotshot directors they brought in to carry the torch for the beloved sci-fi franchise. Understandably, Kennedy is the gatekeeper and has exacting standards that the franchise was built on so keeping these creative directors in check has become a necessity. But why bring them in in the first place if they're given little room to innovate? 

With Abrams at the helm, he's a proven commodity for Lucasfilm who'll conform to their needs while having enough cache to push back when necessary. What isn't clear is Lucasfilm's continued reluctance to hire a person of color/woman as a director. They've taken "risks" with male white directors with thin resumes bypassing more established experienced diverse directors. Barring any more director firings, it'll be 11 films (5 under Disney) with strictly male white directors. In a genre that is usually more inclusive, reflective of its audience, Star Wars has always struggled with the representation of diverse women and people of color. It's an issue that has increasingly become more and more evident from one film to the next. 

Despite the turmoil that might accompany a Star Wars film, it makes huge box office around the world. Its brand is virtually bulletproof. Even George Lucas' prequels were blockbusters despite mixed reviews and fandom's ire about certain aspects (Jar-Jar Binks, Jake Lloyd). Disney has thus far been able to produce a decent winning product. Abrams' The Force Awakens,' while very reminiscent of 'A New Hope,' was an easy, painless, and entertaining transition to a new era of stories. 'Rogue One' came together in the end and garnered good reviews and box office. So if anyone can weather the storm and prevail it's Lucasfilm. However, its lack of representation will only become more apparent and the calls to change will only get louder. But hey, Abrams is back, right?

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com




Comments

Popular posts from this blog

NYCC: Dynamite's Next 25-Cent Revival is 'Dejah Thoris' with Amy Chu

The Princess of Mars is set to return to her throne this January, as Dynamite Entertainment announces the relaunch of one of their most beloved characters, Dejah Thoris. Writer Amy Chu (Poison Ivy, Red Sonja, KISS) will bring the strong, iconic character back to the comics in the debut issue Dejah Thoris #0, which will retail for 25 cents and allow fans to join the adventure at this introductory price.


This replicates the outstanding debut of Sheena #0, which broke 120,000 sales. Retailers can confidently stock their shelves with extra copies of this red-hot new series.

This exciting prequel to Edgar Rice Burroughs' beloved book, A Princess of Mars, will delve into the untold story of the classic Red Martian princess!  After learning of the legendary Gardens of Mars from her grandfather, Dejah Thoris, Princess of Helium, sets off on a dangerous scientific expedition to save her dying planet. But things don't go the way she planned when she encounters a mysterious Green Martian…

PREVIEW: 'Sovereigns' #5 by Ray Fawkes and Dylan Burnett

This is it!  All your questions will be answered, all the mysteries revealed!  What has obliterated humanity?  What the hell happened to the moon?  What is the true nature of the Hidden Jungle?  Why do the heroes you know and love—Turok, Magnus and Doctor Spektor—seem like completely different people?  And perhaps most importantly, how will the world be saved, and at what cost?



DOCTOR SPEKTOR PART 6: The story of the all-new master (and we use the term lightly) sorcerer continues... when Doc gets drunk & summons a demon – and good decision-making ensues!
Sovereigns #5
writers: Ray Fawkes (main),        Aubrey Sitterson (Doctor Spektor) artists: Johnny Desjardins (main),              Dylan Burnett (Doctor Spektor) covers: Stephen Segovia (A)               Johnny Desjardins (B)               Fred Hembeck (C)               Kenan Yarar (D)               Stephen Segovia (RI-B/W) FC  •  32 pages  •  $3.99  •  Teen +











REVIEW: 'Betty and Veronica: Vixens' #1 by Jamie L Rotante, Eva Cabrera, and Elaina Unger

Archie Comics is not afraid to spice things up with non-continuity books featuring the Riverdale gang in alternate realities. Whether it's a zombie horror book (Afterlife with Archie), a fledgling rock band (The Archies), or crossing over with other characters (KISS, Ramones, Predator, Punisher), Archie and the gang have been through a lot of fun adventures. None have been more fun or as liberating as this new series, Betty and Veronica: Vixens.


BETTY AND VERONICA: VIXENS #1
Writer: Jamie L Rotante Artist: Eva Cabrera Colors: Elaina Unger Letters: Rachel Deering Publisher: Archie Comics Release Date: November 15, 2017 Cover Price: $3.99
Score: ★★★★☆ (4/5)
From the opening splash page of a girl biker gang rolling down the highway clad in black leather you
can almost hear "Born to be Wild" playing in your head, Jamie Rotante sets the tone as they circle a trailer of Southside Serpents. These badass bikers mean business and aren't to be trifled with. The shocking part is…

WONDER WOMAN OF THE DAY: Fitness Model Gia Macool Embodies the Amazon Princess

The closest we'll ever get, probably, to superheroes in real life is through the great work of cosplayers. You see them at every pop culture convention from the very basic to extremely elaborate costume design. However, you don't have to be a cosplayer to enjoy dressing up as your favorite superhero from time to time. Take fitness model and entrepreneur Gia Macool for example. An accomplished fitness competitor and model, Macool is also a big fan of DC Comics' Wonder Woman. She shows her love of the iconic Amazon Princess in her fitness wear, meal prep accessories and even a full blown photo shoot in a Wonder Woman costume. 

For decades comics have featured very muscular superheroes, male and female, epitomizing the human form at its strongest. So when bodybuilders and fitness pros decide to suit up as these costumed heroes, they are the embodiment of those fictional characters in the flesh. Macool looks like she stepped out of the pages of a Wonder Woman comic with a suit …

NEW COMIC BOOK DAY: Notable New Releases 11/15/17

Another great week of comics is upon us with some big-name talent attached. Mike Mignola delivers Jenny Finn #1, Gail Simone and Darick Robertson bring Conan/Wonder Woman #3,  James Tynion IV pens a 'Dark Nights Metal Tie-In' The Batman Who Laughs, and Christos Gage offers the action-packed Ninja-K #1.


NEW COMIC BOOK DAY 11/15/17 by Slidely Slideshow
Music by Melkbelly

There's so much more this week too. Bryan Hill and Isaac Goodhart bring the climatic issue of Postal #24, Matthew Rosenberg does double duty this week with Secret Warriors #8 and Punisher #8, James Asmus, Joe Keatinge, Christopher Sebela, Joshua Williamson, and Joe Infurnari debut with Evolution #1, Margarite Bennett drops Sheena: Queen of the Jungle #3, and Vault Comics has two highly anticipated titles this week Alien Bounty Hunter #2 and Zojaqan  #2. All-ages books are well represented with Kid Sherlock trade paperback, Princeless Raven Year 2 #1, and The Legend of Wonder Woman trade paperback. Happy read…