Around the Galaxy: Who Will Be The Next Star Wars Director?

Johnson, Star Wars
Might be kind of tough to find laughter at Lucasfilm this week…

Rian Johnson is nearly everyone’s guess, but is there another?

Late of Collider, now focusing on his own YouTube channel “The Movie Vlog,” media maven John Campea pulled together a pretty decent list of possible directors for Star Wars: Episode IX.  The post description says, “With Star Wars Episode 9 and Lucasfilm parting ways with Director Colin Trevorrow, a new director will be needed for the project. John breaks down the 5 most likely scenarios for the position and give the pros and cons for each candidate.”

I really enjoy John’s enthusiasm in this straightforward, thoughtful breakdown. Click to his Star Wars Rebels Season 4, Trailer 2 breakdown, too.

The Brez goes off the board

Star Wars, Keith Gordon
Keith Gordon, Graphic: EW.com

In a think piece about the traits the right Star Wars director brings to the table, Entertainment Weekly’s Anthony Breznican (or as Steele Saunders calls him, “The Brez”), moves beyond the usual suspects with his pitch for Keith Gordon (of TV’s Fargo, The Leftovers, and indie movie fame).

“But heroes in the Star Wars universe come from unlikely sources, so if it’s not going to be Johnson or Abrams, I’d like to suggest a name: Keith Gordon,” begins Breznican. “He’s a favorite of mine, the director of a series of darkly offbeat films who now oversees some of the finest hours on television. You might also know him from his earlier life as an actor, starring in Christine, Dressed to Kill, and Back to School.”

Breznican added:

Gordon actually has a lot in common with Johnson, who came to Star Wars after stepping in to direct some of the most memorable episodes of Breaking Bad. The ability to bring unique style and vision to a team project, like a TV show, is critical to excelling in something like the Star Wars universe, which is a similar kind of team sport, where personality goes a long way, but there are lots of personalities involved.

However, if Star Wars sticks with familiar faces, there may be a backlash.

The Brez writes, “Many fans say it’s overdue for Lucasfilm to hire a woman or a person of color (or, hey, someone who’s both) to take the helm of a Star Wars film, and that’s an important priority.”

Read the article at EW.com.

Bigger Problems?

Star Wars

The folks at Nerdist had a pretty cool discussion along the lines of “Does Lucasfilm Have Bigger Problems Than Losing Star Wars Directors?” The topics included the possibility of a new face being in the pilot’s seat.

Michael Walsh writes of yesterday’s Nerdist News Talks Back:

Joining host Jessica Chobot on set for a Star Wars-centric show today were three people she’d never have creative differences with, Mothership writer Amy Vorpahl, Nerdist News writer Aliza Pearl, and Jessica’s Bizarre States co-host Andrew Bowser. They started with the big news of the week, Lucasfilm losing/firing/mutually agreeing to part ways with yet another director. But is losing Colin Trevorrow actually good news? And even if it is, should we be worried that almost every new Star Wars movie has seemingly had major problems during production? Is that a sign the studio should ease up on its insane schedule?

Keep your eye out for the part of the conversation (25 minutes in) where Pearl, a Star Trek fan, says she remains envious of the “Lucasfilm/Kathleen Kennedy laser focus” dedication to the story.

Honestly, the comment may be the most prescient point about Kennedy’s leadership — and dedication to the brand — I’ve heard or read.

Read the story, and watch the vid:

Meanwhile, THR asks if Star Wars should chill

In perhaps the most stunning moment of Internet clarity of the current epoch, The Hollywood Reporter’s Josh Spiegel took a step back and asked, “Should Star Wars: Episode IX Be Delayed?”

Star Wars
Chillin’ like a scoundrel…

I mean, I really can’t argue with the man.

He writes:

With luck, the Han Solo prequel will be an exciting look at how one of the best modern movie heroes got his start. But the pervasive sense that the film has to open next May, whether Lord and Miller direct it, or Howard, or someone else, is both baffling and unnecessary. While it’s true that Hollywood is awash in franchises, it’s hard to imagine that audiences will become disenchanted with or straight-up forget about the Star Wars world if we go more than a full 12 months without a new movie. Delaying the release date may seem like a sign of bad news for the project, but even The Last Jedi shifted its release date from May 2017 to this December, in part because The Force Awakens was such a monstrous box-office hit when it opened around Christmas 2015.

Wow, that’s what common sense looks like…

Read more of it on THR.com.

The Business End of things…

Star Wars
Who will be at the helm of Episode IX? Abrams with Kennedy.

Perhaps the most important story of the day comes from Business Insider; or, you know, the site people read before investing their money in movies and such.

In his latest story, Jason Guerrasio answers the question: “Why fans shouldn’t be concerned about all the directors leaving ‘Star Wars’ movies — yet.”

And by fans, I believe he means investors:

For most movies, when the director and producer (especially when the producer has all the power, whether it be rights to the project for the money) can’t get along, bad things happen. But “Star Wars” has the unique advantage of having incredible resources that it can rebound.

So don’t go selling your Disney stock quite yet…

Enjoy the piece at BusinessInsider.com, and in it read a pretty complete timeline of Star Wars ins-and-outs.

MTFBWY! JB

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John Bishop

A graduate of Boston and Northeastern universities, John Bishop became the beat reporter for BostonBruins.com prior to the B’s 2006-07 hockey season. While with the Bruins, “Bish” traveled North America and Europe to cover the Black & Gold’s every move via laptop, blog, and smart phone. The co-author of two books, Bygone Boston and Full 60 to History: The Inside Story of the 2011 Stanley Cup Champion Boston Bruins, John covered the XXI Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver in 2010 and the B’s 2011 championship run and banner raising before taking a faculty/communications position at a prep school outside Boston in 2013. He lives with his wife Andrea and sons Jack, Scott, and Luke in central Massachusetts.

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