Frank Marshall Says STAR WARS Director Search Down to a Couple of Candidates; Joe Johnston Comments on Helming EPISODE VII

by     Posted 1 year, 309 days ago

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It’s time for your daily dose of Star Wars: Episode VII rumblings.  With the official confirmation that Toy Story 3 scribe Michael Arndt will be handling script duties on the Return of the Jedi sequel, all eyes are now on which filmmaker LucasFilm will choose to direct the highly anticipated follow-up.  Steven Spielberg, Quentin Tarantino, and Zack Snyder have all taken themselves out of the running (though they were all unlikely candidates to begin with), and we recently heard from J.J. Abrams, Jon Favreau, Guillermo del Toro, and Colin Tervorrow about the prospect of helming the follow-up.

Now producer Frank Marshall, husband of new LucasFilm President/Star Wars overseer Kathleen Kennedy, has spoken briefly about the project, revealing that the director search is now down to “a couple of candiates.”  Moreover, Captain America director Joe Johnston has also chimed in with his thoughts on possibly taking over the franchise.  Hit the jump for much more.

frank-marshall-star-wars-7Speaking with MTV News, Marshall revealed that he’s got the inside scoop on what’s going on with the director search, but he’s unable to reveal anything:

“I do [have some inside info on the director] but I can’t reveal it, or I won’t be alive tomorrow.”

Marshall did say, however, that the search has been whittled down to “a couple of candidates, but I don’t know how soon that will be revealed.”

Recently a snippet from an interview with Kennedy and George Lucas was released in which they talked specifically about the director search for Episode VII.  In that video, Kennedy revealed that they were looking at a number of people, including directors that she’s worked with in the past.  Many then brought up the prospect of Joe Johnston possibly stepping in, as he previously took over the Jurassic Park franchise with Jurassic Park III (produced by Kennedy) and has a great eye for adventure as evidenced by films like The Rocketeer and Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.  Moreover, he worked on the original Star Wars trilogy as part of the effects unit.

joe-johnston-star-wars-episode-7Spurned by a recent editorial by Movies.com editor Erik Davis in which Johnston was heralded as a great choice to helm Episode VII, Huffington Post reached out to the director for his thoughts on directing “it”:

“A lot would depend on what ‘it’ is. I am very glad to see LucasFilm cranking up to get productive again, regardless of who ends up doing it.”

That’s not an outright “no,” so fans of Johnston can take heart in knowing that the filmmaker hasn’t specifically ruled the prospect out.  Hopefully LucasFilm makes an announcement regarding the Episode VII director soon, though, before every single director in town is asked to give his or her thoughts on possibly helming the franchise.

Watch the video interview with Marshall below, in which he also says that there’s nothing new to report about Indiana Jones 5 and promises that there will be another Bourne movie.

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  • Sandy

    Tell us about Jurassic Park 4!!

  • PhillB

    Why won’t they even try Brad Bird?

    • drewerd

      I agree he has great vision as a director as long as the script is good he could do wonders

    • Rockslide

      Brad Bird would definitely be my first choice too. A Bird Star Wars would be incredible.

    • ciny

      george miller

  • Junierizzle

    I just hope they pick someone proven. And not some commercial director that has never made a movie but he is good with visuals.

  • Strong Enough

    Please not Joe Johnson. Captain America was a cornfest. I want new start wars not my grandfathers old cranky version where i see the strings on the x wing

    and brad bird is doing 1952. he doesn’t have time to direct star wars so shut up people. You’re getting Andrew stanton

    • Ryan D

      You, sir are a moron and what is wrong with the movie going population.

      • Norris

        Captain America was a cornfest. I would argue that if you liked that movie then YOU would actually be what is wrong with the movie going population.

      • Mikael

        Did I just read someone calling someone else a moron for NOT liking Capt America?!

        Incredible.

        And then to say that’s what is wrong with the movie going population. Please troll, mercy!

    • ScaredForMovies

      I agree. Johnston’s not reliable enough. I also thought Captain America sucked. Started off on an alright note but turned what could have been the most interesting parts of the movie into a cheesy montage. That fight with the Red Skull at the end was epic though. Oh wait no it wasn’t they fought for 5 seconds before the Cosmic Cube sucked the Red Skull away.

      • Clark

        Right you are !

    • Cahoot

      I agree about Johnston – I will be massively disappointed if he is chosen to direct. Captain America was not very good at all.

  • tarek

    Sam Raimi is tha man.

    • sense 11

      NO

      • tarek

        YES

  • Quarantine

    Robert Zemeckis, Brad Bird, Andrew Stanton seem like the frontfunners.

    I really hope they stay away from Rupert Sanders or Gore Verbinski. I think I’d lose my mind if either of them were attached.

    • Mikael

      Andrew Stanton? Not after his AotC and He-Man mashup.

      Brad Bird, Alfonso Cuaron, or Chistopher Nolan. His name is not even being mentioned, how amazing and out of left field would that be?

      Also, Collider-your comment Security Code/verification system is really broken.

      • greg

        I nominate, Duncan Jones or bloomkamp.

  • sense 11

    As long as its not Tyler Perry, Michael Bay, George Lucas or M Night Shyamalan i wont completely freak out and start burning stuff

    • tarek

      Or Zack Snyder

  • Nate

    Joe Johnston is an OK director. But this is Star Wars, the sequel to Return of the Jedi. They need the “best of the best” to do this. I don’t think Johnston falls into this category.

  • Elitist Prick

    Joe Johnston, the guy who couldn’t make a Captain America movie OR a werewolf movie starring Benicio Del Toro AND Anthony Hopkins to work? He can make anything boring.

    • Clark

      Hear, hear !

  • Juulut

    Please minimum CGI as possible,,,,take notes from the old trilogies, 1st jurassic park and nolan’s batman movies. Godspeed SW

  • filmquack

    Oh, god no… Joe Johnston lives and bathes in mediocrity. He is a workman like director if ever there was one. His movies are ok, decent, “a blast” type stuff. You know, completely and utterly forgettable. There is one thing NONE of the star wars films were (both the good and the bad) and that was forgettable. I am struggling to think of a worse choice than Joe Johnston. The originals were unforgettably groundbreaking, and great; the prequels were unforgettably awful. But Star Wars has never lived in the realm of “fun” mediocrity, and I seriously hope they never do.

    • Clark

      NO, NO, fuc johnston! The guy who thought the poster boy for Jurassic Park, the T Rex had nothing to bring to the game anymore so he had it killed amidst a cheesy subpar story of an american family reuniting, while throwing Dr. Grant in the mix ? The guy who CHEESED the freaking Wolfman, what a waste of Anthony Hopkin’s time, not to mention our money. The guy who CHEESED Cap America plus forgettable action scenes, Red Skull is one of the badasses from Marvel, what a waste of Hugo Weaving’s time, not to mention our money ! May the Velociraptors catch him, I’ll go with Del Toro since Brad Bird and everyone else is superbusy actually making Good Stuff. I’m sorry but this is Star Wars second chance we’re talking about here, Cap America was this schmuck’s test to do something big and he flunked. If he had some conscience slash humility he’d ruled himself out of the race. He invented the verb cheese.

  • curbcooler

    Joss Whdeon, Brad Bird, and JJ Abrams have already taken themselves out of the running. Move on already! “JOSH TRANK” would be a perfect choice to do the next Star wars. Anybody that has seen “Chronicle” knows this.

  • curbcooler

    Joss Whdeon, Brad Bird, and JJ Abrams have already taken themselves out of the running. Move on already! \"JOSH TRANK\" would be a perfect choice to do the next Star wars. Anybody that has seen \"Chronicle\" knows this.

  • curbcooler

    Joss Whdeon, Brad Bird, and JJ Abrams have already taken themselves out of the running. Move on already! \\"JOSH TRANK\\" would be a perfect choice to do the next Star wars. Anybody that has seen “Chronicle” already knows this.

  • Dante

    Guillermo del Toro is Your Name;
    Your kingdom come,
    Your will be done,
    on earth as it is in heaven.
    Give us this day the news that you will direct Star Wars VII
    but deliver us from joe johnston. Amen.

    • Dante

      joe johnston, father of cheese he cheesed Jurassic Park, he cheesed the freaking Wolfman and he cheesed Cap america, this guy invented cheese.
      I’m sorry but this Star Wars second chance we’re taking about here, Cap america was this schmuck’s test to do something big and he flunked, if he had some humility he’d ruled himself out of the race.

  • Imtheonlygirlhereicantell

    O hshut up nerds the only reason people (like all of you) bash Captain america is becuz Johnston does his own thing and does not pander to the modern dunder-head teens/fanboys of today by putting in things that relate to your boring video game playing couch dwelling lives. It was set in the 40′s and people wanted it set in the modern reality TV show internet scouring loser era for you nothings.

    Also Cap dies in the end and does not get the girl so everyone is sad and angry cuz their five min away from their job or mooching unemployment was not fulfilling.

    Joe Johnston is a great talent who started as a model maker and became a director of many good films he has an impressive career and angry fans just like to talk.

    and any angry replies wil not be heard as I will never read this comment section again so…… :)

  • Imtheonlygirlhereicantell

    O hshut up nerds the only reason people (like all of you) bash Captain america is becuz Johnston does his own thing and does not pander to the modern dunder-head teens/fanboys of today by putting in things that relate to your boring video game playing couch dwelling lives. It was set in the 40\’s and people wanted it set in the modern reality TV show internet scouring loser era for you nothings.

    Also Cap dies in the end and does not get the girl so everyone is sad and angry cuz their five min away from their job or mooching unemployment was not fulfilling.

    Joe Johnston is a great talent who started as a model maker and became a director of many good films he has an impressive career and angry fans just like to talk.

    and any angry replies wil not be heard as I will never read this comment section again so…… :)

  • m.hamill

    please god let it be chris nolan or david fincher or i wont do it, these men are the future of cinema, george and kathleen please get on board or forever be the ones who muffed up star wars again!!!

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  • Marc

    Since this has delved into fan speculation I’m going out on a limb here…Genndy Tartakovsky. His Clone Wars series was better than Episode I, II and III combined. I like the Brad Bird suggestion but I would love to see Tartakovsky make his jump to the big screen.

    Also I agree against Johnston. I LOVE LOVE LOVE The Rocketeer and respect his contributions to the effects of SW, but Captain America was just luke warm at best. I don’t think he’s the right choice to breath new life into Star Wars.

  • Joseph M

    Enough of the silly Nolan talk. Star Wars isn’t a dark moody franchise that takes itself way too seriously. Jon Favreau’s already got the gig because he can direct top level CGI, can get good emotional performances from his cast, is renowned for bringing production in below budget and ahead of schedule and knows how to get golden box office appeal. Joe Johnston’s pissed because he knows they won’t bank on him even though he has history with the franchise, and Abrams’ ego is pissed because he’s knee deep in Star Trek. Trust me.

  • T.C. Boyle

    Perhaps it’s worth noting that Kathleen Kennedy (and Frank Marshall) both worked with David Fincher on Benjamin Button, and that Fincher himself worked in ILM’s camera department on both Return of the Jedi and Temple of Doom. Since Fincher has fallen into a hit/miss cycle, and Dragon Tattoo was a “miss,” I’d love to see him “hit” with Episode VII.

  • Mikael

    Did I just read someone calling someone else a moron for NOT liking Capt America?!

    Incredible.

    And then to say that\’s what is wrong with the movie going population. Please troll, mercy!

  • Mikael

    Did I just read someone calling someone else a moron for NOT liking Capt America?!

    Incredible.

    And then to say that\\\’s what is wrong with the movie going population. Please troll, mercy!

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