Star Wars: Episode IX Director Optionsby ZachPerilstein
After Jurassic World director Colin Trevorrow departed Star Wars: Episode IX the internet has been running wild. We got Star Wars geeks, social justice warriors, and people who hate Star Wars chiming into the director conversation.
So today I'm here to list options for Star Wars: Episode IX. Some that are far-fetched and others that are fairly reasonable. I never understood why Lucasfilm hired Trevorrow in the first place. Yeah, Jurassic World did well at the box office. A lot of films do well at the box office. The decision of having three different directors take a piece of the trilogy never made any sense for me. J.J Abrams, Rian Johnson, and Colin Trevorrow were the lucky three. J.J Abrams directed Star Wars: The Force Awakens and it was a brilliant film. It was a good start to the sequel trilogy. Abrams wrote The Force Awakens along with Michael Arndt and Lawrence Kasdan (writer of The Empire Strikes Back and The Return of the Jedi). The Last Jedi is basically a solo project for Rian Johnson who directed and wrote the film. Episode IX is being rewritten by Jack Thorne. Why not just have one of these directors (not Colin Trevorrow) just take the reigns of the whole series. At first a lot of people were excited about seeing three different directing takes on the Star Wars universe. Now some are realizing that continuity is more important. Here is the first person on my director options list.
*Another thing to consider is that a lot of these directors are busy with projects so they can't just drop everything and do Star Wars. This list was made for your enjoyment*
Rian Johnson (The Last Jedi)
This is simple. Johnson grasps the Star Wars universe. The first teaser for The Last Jedi looks terrific. Although I haven't seen it yet I have confidence in Rian Johnson. I think his vision would benefit Episode IX. Also The Last Jedi does sounds like a final film. So it would make sense Johnson does the final film in this incarnation of Star Wars. He is also at the top of Lucasfilm's short list.
J.J Abrams (The Force Awakens)
The man who started the new trilogy. Could do us the honor of ending it. People felt The Force Awakens mimicked A New Hope too much. I felt the film was still differentiated itself from past films. The main storyline was finding Luke Skywalker with the subplot of fighting the evil First Order. Although it was more of Harrison Ford's decision. Han Solo was killed in The Force Awakens by Kylo Ren (Ben Solo). Looking back on it the move is even more sad that we didn't get to see Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and General Leia Organa reunite. That wasn't Abrams fault. Although it is only one of the minor flaws in The Force Awakens. Abrams still has enough skill to finish out this trilogy. He knows the characters of Rey, Finn, and Poe he essentially created them.
Even though James Gunn has already made it clear his schedule would not allow it. He would be an excellent option for a future Star Wars Story film. Gunn knows a lot about character development. His take on the Star Wars universe would be thrilling to watch. I'm just glad he is focusing on his own galaxy trilogy. This is a example that Lucasfilm could've done. One passionate director creating two brilliant films. Now we anxiously wait for the third Guardians of the Galaxy in 2020.
Ava DuVernay (A Wrinkle in Time)
Ava DuVernay is a name you have been seeing a lot if you google "who should be director for Episode IX." DuVernay also helped Abrams with a scene in The Force Awakens. The scene where Rey finally accepts the force in her battle against Kylo Ren. The big seller for me is that she's a fan. Abrams said she should tackle a Star Wars film. It's hard to play devil's advocate when the decision makes sense. Disney has the confidence in DuVernay as she is directing A Wrinkle in Time.
Lucasfilm on the other hand is a different kind of beast. Would Lucafilm even risk offering Ava DuVernay the job? What if they don't like her creative vision of the film à la Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. Could you imagine the Twitter riots?
DuVernay created the 100 million dollar budget film A Wrinkle in Time. The film is highly-anticipated. Episode IX would benefit having a true fan direct. If she doesn't get the job for Episode IX. Having her direct a future Star Wars Story would be incredible.
Ryan Coogler (Creed, Black Panther)
This is a pick that I can totally get behind. I personally don't see Coogler taking the job but he would be an excellent option. The Rocky series is one of my favorite film series. To have a director emulate and recreate what you felt in Rocky is absolute magical. Coogler understands nostalgia with a twist. Creed was a film set in the Rocky universe but it was distinctly different yet gave nods to the original. Coogler could do the same with Star Wars in its last film at least for this trilogy. He is also directing Black Panther, a film set in the wildly popular Marvel Cinematic Universe. The film comes out in 2018 and it will probably further my love for Ryan Coogler.
Michelle MacLaren (Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead)
Let me start off by saying don't get your hopes up for Michell MacLaren. Her schedule seems full. She will make her feature-film debut in 2019 with The Nightingale. That won't leave enough time to take the reigns for Episode IX. Yet the suggestion of MacLaren is interesting. As back in 2014 she was originally going to direct Wonder Woman. She left the project due to "creative differences." MacLaren has quite the résumé. Directing popular prestige shows like Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, Better Call Saul, Westworld, and Breaking Bad. Rian Johnson also directed episodes of Breaking Bad. She is currently working on the HBO series The Deuce.
Patty Jenkins (Wonder Woman)
Speaking of the former Wonder Woman director. We minus-well bring up the director of Wonder Woman Patty Jenkins. I don't know if she would be passionate to dive into a third chapter of an already established trilogy. Also with Wonder Woman 2 coming out in 2019. Time really isn't there for two major blockbusters. Jenkins is a talented director so it makes sense to include her on this options list. Plus Wonder Woman is her story. Why would she leave that on the table to finish someone else's?
He can simply get the job done. I have faith that he will completely fix the Han Solo film that is a hot take in itself. I was also impressed recently by his documentary The Beatles: Eight Days a Week. Which showcased never before seen footage of the band during the height of Beatlemania.
Ron Howard is a reliable and true filmmaker. Making him the replacement for Episode IX would be easy. Getting together to hash out details with Lucasfilm Story Group, Abrams, and Johnson would be easy for Howard and there would be little conflict. Something that Kathleen Kennedy would appreciate.
Matt Reeves (Planet of the Apes Trilogy)
After finishing the Planet of the Apes prequel trilogy. Reeves has proven he can create blockbuster level films. He also signed on to direct The Batman for DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. This will continue the story of Ben Affleck's Bruce Wayne. The project seems slow moving so he might have time in between to direct Episode IX.
Edgar Wright (Baby Driver)
Baby Driver was visually stunning and impactful film. It's unlikely he would take the job. Wright isn't keen on replacing other directors. This situation counts as a replacement although the film was in pre-production. A Star Wars film with a Baby Driver style and pace would be exhilarating though.
Joe Johnston (Captain America: The First Avenger)
What a story this would be. Johnston early on his career worked in special effects at Lucasfilm on the original Star Wars trilogy and Raiders of the Lost Ark. He has directed films like Jurassic Park III, Captain America: The First Avenger, and The Rocketeer. He is also the director of The Chronicles of Narnia: The Silver Chair which doesn't have a release date. Joe Johnston has the experience to take over a Star Wars film. It would be a wonderful story of how he worked his way up from special effects to director.
It won't happen but I just want to have his name on this list.
Ralph Hemecker (The Flash and Once Upon A Time)
Very unlikely I'm just bias towards Ralph Hemecker because he has directed two of my favorite shows in Once Upon A Time and The Flash. I can trust him with directing one of my favorite films.
Well this could be a choice for Lucasfilm. Kasdan has co-written The Empire Strikes Back, The Return of the Jedi, The Force Awakens, and Han Solo. Although known for his writing and producing credits. Kasdan could get into the directors chair for Episode IX. Probably with a script rewritten by him or his son.
I'm sure Lucasfilm's shortlist isn't even this long. We all know for sure this man isn't on it. It would be nice to see George Lucas direct or be involved with one of these Star Wars films before it is too late. We all know Disney is most likely doing a X, XII, and XIII. Not right away but soon after the "final chapter." It would be nice to see George Lucas come back to his idea. Anything with the title Star Wars will sell at the box office just keep that in mine. Disney CEO Bob Iger even said they are planning Star Wars films well into the 2030's. Can we give George one if he wants one? It would be the nice thing to do. Although Lucas wasn't over the moon about The Force Awakens. He did give Gareth Edwards creative tips on Rogue One. Which that film turned out fantastic. I mean a bunch of people will be opposed to having him come on to direct but me personally I would be fine with it. #GettingItDoneAt73
We have a talented director options for Star Wars: Episode IX. I even threw my hat into the conversation.
See that really went over well. ZERO retweets for me. Just remember this tweet when I actually direct a Star Wars film. Oh just you wait.
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Star Wars: Episode IX will hit theaters in 2019