This is unexpected.
Star Wars: Episode IX recently parted ways with its previous director, much to the amusement of this particular writer. Well, it only took a week, but Star Wars: Episode IX has found its director. Let’s just say it’s someone familiar
Sayeth the StarWars.com press release:
J.J. Abrams, who launched a new era of Star Wars with The Force Awakens in 2015, is returning to complete the sequel trilogy as writer and director of Star Wars: Episode IX. Abrams will co-write the film with Chris Terrio. Star Wars: Episode IX will be produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Michelle Rejwan, Abrams, Bad Robot, and Lucasfilm.
“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,” said Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy.
Well, this took me by surprise. I don’t think very many people expected J.J. Abrams would step up to direct this thing. If any previous Star Wars director would return to direct, I would have put money on Rian Johnson. I guess it’s a good thing I’m not a betting man.
It’s a safe choice for director though, if a bit unexciting. While many people were hoping for some new blood on Star Wars (*cough* Ava DuVernay *cough*), Abrams is a solid choice. Despite its issues, The Force Awakens is still the best Star Wars film to come out since Empire Strikes Back. At the very least, I think we no longer have to fear this new trilogy ending on a bad note. At the very very least, Episode IX is in better hands than Colin ‘Book of Henry‘ Trevorrow. Abrams introduced us to this set of characters we’ve grown to love, I’ll happily watch his conclusion to their stories.
As long as it doesn’t involve another fucking Death Star.
Not only do we have a new director, but a new release date. Unsurprisingly, the film has been pushed back to December 20th, 2019. The film was originally set to release in May of that same year, hot off the heels of Avengers 4. I don’t know what Disney was originally think releasing those two films so close together, but who knows. They probably know more than I do. I’m glad LucasFilm is giving this film the time it needs and is making sure not to rush it. Plus, I’ve grown mighty used to Star Wars during Christmas time.