It seems Lucasfilm is having some bad luck with directors as of late. Just three months after Phil Lord and Christopher Miller left the untitled Han Solo standalone film because of creative differences, Colin Trevorrow has exited Star Wars: Episode IX for the same reason. According to a statement from Disney on September 5th: “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.”
Now, a week later, Trevorrow has been replaced with none other than J.J. Abrams, the writer, and director of the blockbuster, The Force Awakens. Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy said in a statement: “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.” Abrams is also a producer on the trilogy’s second film, The Last Jedi, which is due out December 15th, 2017.
There are concerns among fans with Abrams returning to the director’s chair, especially since some thought that The Force Awakens was just a reboot of A New Hope. However, The Last Jedi was written and directed by Rian Johnson, and it’s likely he’ll take the trilogy in an entirely new direction. Regardless, Abrams is the safest bet Lucasfilm can make because he’s unlikely to walk out due to “creative differences”.
Star Wars: Episode IX now has a release date of December 20, 2019, which is seven months after its original date in May. The new release date means the film will hit screens just a week after Patty Jenkins’ second Wonder Woman film, so it seems there may be a battle at the box office.
Every Star Wars film this era so far has come out in December, so despite the pushback, the new release date fits right into tradition!
Star Wars: Episode IX is scheduled for release on December 20, 2019. pic.twitter.com/rDBqmuHX89
— Star Wars (@starwars) September 12, 2017