J.J. Abrams will direct Star Wars: Episode VII for Walt Disney Pictures and Lucasfilm, claims The Wrap (who apparently have heard from a “source close to the production” but all outlets online are reporting it as fact now).
Long rumoured for the project and and a well-known Trek geek (one could argue his Star Trek reboot was more in love with Stars Wars than anything Gene Roddenberry created), Abrams will helm the first in a new trilogy as his next film after Star Trek Into Darkness, which opens in May.
The Wrap claims that Lucasfilm’s Kathleen Kennedy had been courting Abrams to direct the new Star Wars movie for quite some time, though Argo and The Town helmer Ben Affleck had also been in “contention”.
Abrams had previously claimed weeks after the new Star Wars movie was announced in late October, that he wasn’t likely to be the man to bring that galaxy far, far away back to the big screen;
“Look, Star Wars is one of my favorite movies of all time. I frankly feel that – I almost feel that, in a weird way, the opportunity for whomever it is to direct that movie, it comes with the burden of being that kind of iconic movie and series. I was never a big Star Trek fan growing up, so for me, working on Star Trek didn’t have any of that, you know, almost fatal sacrilege, and so, I am looking forward more then anyone to the next iterations of Star Wars, but I believe I will be going as a paying moviegoer!”
Written by Toy Story 3 and Little Miss Sunshine writer Michael Ardnt, Star Wars: Episode VII is scheduled to hit theaters in 2015.
Disney and Lucasfilm then plan to release a second and third movie every other year after that, completing a brand new trilogy.
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