The rumour on everyone's lips in Hollywood is that J.J. Abrams is on the verge of dropping out of Star Wars Episode VII, after Badass Digest's Devin Faraci claimed that he had heard the news from several folks at Comic-Con this weekend.
Faraci noted that, "This has been something I've heard for a while now, and from multiple insiders. I know that he didn't want to shoot the movie in England and was overruled, but that happened a while ago. This weekend at Comic Con I continued to hear these whispers", while going on to theorise that Abrams may end up leaving Star Wars and returning to helm Star Trek 3.
The expectation is that Abrams will be showing up at Germany's Star Wars Celebration (held from July 26th to July 28th) to make some casting announcements for Episode VII, and Faraci suggests that if Abrams no-shows or has a muted presence of some kind, then it's likely that he will be bailing in the coming weeks.
LucasFilm characteristically denied the report, stating, "There is no truth to the rumor...JJ is having a great time working on the script and is looking forward to going into production next year." Still, it is widely known that Abrams isn't at all thrilled about shooting the movie in the UK - as it would separate him from his family - and Abrams' refusal to count himself out of the Star Trek 3 gig has only given greater credence to these rumours.
The next few weeks are going to potentially be very tepid for Episode VII; if JJ shows up in Germany with a title for the movie and some casting announcements, then we can all relax. If not, then I hope Disney has a list drawn up of directors to replace the man.
What do you make of the rumours? And would you like to see JJ replaced?