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Vulture says “No Director Will Ever Be Bigger Than the Franchise”
Late last week, Vulture’s Chris Lee attempted to shed some light on the latest directorial departure from the Star Wars franchise.
Citing an inside industry source, Lee explains that the seeds of Colin Trevorrow’s firing–yes, firing–were sown on the set of Jurassic World. Trevorrow, hand-picked by Steven Spielberg, was thought to be somewhat untouchable. According to the source, ever-confident and emboldened by the box-office success of that film, Trevorrow’s attitude put him at constant odds with the Lucasfilm brass.
Trevorrow’s negative press, which included a 22% score on Rotten Tomatoes of the critically panned The Book of Henry, certainly didn’t help the situation.
There’s one gatekeeper when it comes to Star Wars and it’s Kathleen Kennedy,” says a veteran movie producer, who has worked with the studio chief. “If you rub Kathleen Kennedy the wrong way — in any way — you’re out.
The Verge posits: “Why a woman needs to direct Star Wars…”
In the aftermath of Trevorrow’s departure, The Verge’s Lindsey Romain wrote:
Rey is a solid metaphor for women in Hollywood, who are traditionally less sought-after and nurtured than their male counterparts. That’s partly symptomatic of a “good old boys’ club” mentality that sees filmmakers cherry-picking eager male protégés who look and think like they did as fledgling visionaries.
A solid metaphor for sure and one followed by solid directorial suggestions: Ava Duvernay, Michelle MacLaren, Mimi Leder. A very, very solid read.
The Telegraph asks, “Who is Kathleen Kennedy, and is the Star Wars universe safe in her hands?”
Perhaps because of its provenance, The Telegraph’s Rebecca Hawkes piece hasn’t gotten the kind of attention it deserves.
This space has been waiting to review a story which A) points to the success of Kathleen Kennedy and B) acknowledges that ANY studio head–man or woman–will have to admit mistakes and make difficult decisions.
Kennedy, without a shadow of a doubt, is someone who knows exactly what she’s doing. Her uniform vision of Star Wars might not be the same as yours, or mine, or Colin Trevorrow’s, or Phil Lord and Chris Miller’s, but it’s one that should be respected.
Furthermore Hawkes says that Kennedy has publicly made course corrections on previous decisions, even at the risk of her heretofore amazing reputation.
“In fact, the overall impression Kennedy gives is of someone who will always put her movies themselves – the finished products that cinema-goers will pay to see – above all other considerations,” she writes.
Hawkes also adds:
It’s not yet known what the problem with Trevorrow was (although there seems to have been issues with his script drafts and overall vision for the film) but it seems likely that he was similarly “wrong” for the franchise. When these kind of mistakes happen, someone has to take charge. By admitting that her risky choices may not have paid off and stepping in to amend things, Kennedy may have earned herself a reputation for ruthlessness – but she’s also, unquestionably, getting things done.
C-3PO on Princess Leia and Jar Jar
Speaking of getting things done, is there anyone who promoted the saga (or poked more fun at himself) more than Anthony Daniels.
Space.ca, of all places, posted a terrific piece about Daniels’ panel at the recent Fan Expo 2017.
Jon from Space.ca writes of Daniels:
It’s not easy for me being in the suit because I’m slightly separated from everybody else,” he said. “Back in the day, I was basically locked in that suit… to begin with, of course people would just come up to me all the time and say, ‘Gosh, you look fantastic. This is incredible. You are a perfect droid.’ Because nobody had seen a costume like this. But after a few days, I had become an object. People forgot I was in there. They accepted—because of my brilliant portrayal—that I was a robot and a machine and you don’t have to be nice to machines. You don’t have to say, ‘Are you okay?’ When did you last say that to your microwave?
Daniels also speaks poinently about Ahmed Best and Carrie Fisher in the piece, which may be found here.
Fuel for your Monday morning meandering…
Finally, the guys at IGN.com’s Up At Noon Live! came up with “8 Questions For Star Wars Episode 8.”
They admit, “We might be left hanging until Episode 9 for some of these.”
We agree. Nothing Earth-rattling here, but a nice smooth vid to watch while you’re sipping your coffee.