Colin Trevorrow out as director of Star Wars: Episode IX

There’s some big news that broke tonight regarding Star Wars Episode IX: Lucasfilm announced that they have mutually parted ways with director Colin Trevorrow.

Here was the statement Lucasfilm released:

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

This is huge news, but of course it’s not entirely surprising.  Earlier this year, Star Wars fans were concerned by the horrible reviews of Trevorrow’s The Book of Henry, and then in August it was reported that Jack Thorne had taken over the writing duties.  So while it seemed like the two sides wanted to work things out, it reached a point where that wasn’t possible.

The Hollywood Reporter reported tonight that the big issues were regarding the script, and that the relationship between Trevorrow and Kathleen Kennedy became “unmanageable” despite Kennedy’s desire not to have to fire another director (she fired the directors of the Han Solo movie earlier this summer).  Trevorrow had several attempts at writing the script, and then they brought in a new writer too – so it does seem that the script was a big issue.  I can’t help but wonder whether a big point regarding the script is what to do with Carrie Fisher’s Leia, who was set to have a huge role in Episode IX but who tragically passed away last year.

I have made it no secret regarding my thoughts on Episode IX: I’m totally fine and happy about this move to get rid of Colin Trevorrow as the director… and I’ve been talking for months about how I wished Rian Johnson would take over the role.  Well, there’s some good news there: The Hollywood Reporter mentioned that Johnson is a possibility, while Deadline reports that Johnson is “atop the short list of directors” to replace Trevorrow.  THR also mentioend that J.J. Abrams, who directed The Force Awakens, “has also emerged as a top contender.”  While I’d be totally ok with Abrams taking over, I’d prefer Johnson.  He’s got a tremendous reputation as a writer and, by all accounts, has done a terrific job with The Last Jedi – and he’s proven that a Star Wars movie can be made seamlessly and without major drama!  So I am totally in support of Rian Johnson, and he’d be my top choice to replace Colin Trevorrow.  If that happens, I think Episode IX would be in good hands.

Earlier this year, Johnson tweeted that, “I would do another SW movie in a heartbeat.  I’ve had the time of my life.”  Hopefully he meant it, and hopefully Lucasfilm makes it happen.

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