While the release of the first Star Wars film of the new, George Lucas-less Lucasfilm era is still a couple of months away, the studio has already put most of its ducks in a row for the subsequent sequels and spinoffs. Rian Johnson, Gareth Edwards, and Josh Trank were announced in fairly quick succession as the directors of Episode VIII, Rogue One, and an untitled anthology film respectively, and while Trank subsequently fell off his project, it’s clear that Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy is taking careful consideration into planning each new Star Wars film, assembling the creative team with plenty of time to develop each movie before filming finally begins.
The final (for now) piece of the puzzle fell into place last month when Lucasfilm announced that Jurassic World helmer Colin Trevorrow had been selected as the director of Star Wars: Episode IX, which will conclude this new trilogy that J.J. Abrams kicks off in December’s The Force Awakens. While Episode IX won’t be going before cameras for a while, Trevorrow has already begun preparations for the picture at Lucasfilm as evidenced by the just-tweeted photo below:
— Colin Trevorrow (@colintrevorrow) September 8, 2015
We know that Lawrence Kasdan, Simon Kinberg, and original Episode VII screenwriter Michael Arndt sat in a room shortly after Lucasfilm’s sale to Disney and crafted the stories that would eventually become the new trilogy and spinoff films, but we’ve also heard that the now-hired Star Wars filmmakers are working together at Lucasfilm to further develop the various stories that will fill out this expanded Star Wars universe.
The campus is one man short now that Edwards has begun production on Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, but Johnson remains as he gears up to start filming Episode VIII next spring, and Phil Lord and Chris Miller are no doubt regulars at this point as they develop the untitled young Han Solo “Star Wars Story” that they’ll direct.
Trevorrow is first making a non-Star Wars movie before he devotes his full attention to Episode IX—plot details are under wraps for The Book of Henry, which he shoots later this year in New York, but it’s a much smaller scale film in the vein of his debut Safety Not Guaranteed. Regardless, it’s clear from this tweet that Star Wars isn’t too far from in his mind—though Trevorrow also has scripting duties on Jurassic Park 5 to tackle in the interim as well.
Admittedly Trevorrow wouldn’t have been my top choice to helm Episode IX—I felt Jurassic World lacked the directorial imagination and inventiveness that makes someone like Rian Johnson or Gareth Edwards an exciting choice—but I’m curious to see how he follows in the footsteps of Abrams and Johnson, concluding this trilogy but also, presumably, setting up the saga for further installments. It’s a challenge I’m sure he’s eager to tackle.
For a refresher on the Star Wars release schedule thus far, see below. Catch up on all of our Star Wars coverage by clicking here.
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens – December 18, 2015
- Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – December 16, 2016
- Star Wars: Episode VIII – May 26, 2017
- Untitled Han Solo Star Wars Story – May 25, 2018
- Star Wars: Episode IX – 2019