After an incredibly successful opening weekend for Godzilla — which spurred the greenlight of a sequel — director Gareth Edwards has received more great news. THR has learned he’s now attached to direct one of the Star Wars spinoffs, of which there are at least three, the first one coming after Star Wars: Episode VII.
THR does not yet know which spinoff Edwards signed to direct (probably Boba Fett), but his schedule is currently open. Although he’s signed to direct Godzilla 2 and Godzilla 3 (!), neither movie has a script yet.
The Star Wars project marks an amazing career trajectory for Edwards, who went from making a small creature feature for $500,000, 2010’s Monsters, to getting the assignment to take on Godzilla, a monster in need of a 21st century rehabilitation.
The mission was a success, with the Legendary/Warner Bros. movie overperforming when it opened last weekend, grossing $93.1 million. The movie also received strong critical reviews and plenty of fanboy love.
We’ve already recapped Star Wars spinoff rumors, but here’s a quick summary. Some information leaked by Hasbro suggests the first spinoff will be Bobo Fett, then we get Han Solo, followed by “Red Five”, which was both Luke and Anakin Skywalker’s call sign as pilots. We’re assuming Red Five will be about Luke Skywalker’s service during the Battle of Yavin, in which the first Death Star was destroyed. We have some file footage of that:
Also an appropriate sentiment for any haters who don’t like a relatively new director handling a Star Wars spinoff.
UPDATE: Deadline reports the film has an opening date of December 16, 2016, which means Edwards is likely directing the Boba Fett spinoff.
UPDATE #2: Now there’s a press release from Lucasfilm, which also reveals Gary Whitta (The Book of Eli) will write the script:
Gareth Edwards and Gary Whitta Onboard for Star Wars Stand-Alone Film
May 22, 2014
In addition to the episodes of a new Star Wars trilogy, Lucasfilm and Disney have begun development on multiple stand-alone movies that will offer new stories beyond the core Saga. Gareth Edwards will direct the first stand-alone film, with a screenplay by Gary Whitta. The film is due out December 16, 2016.
Gareth Edwards blazed into the filmmaking forefront with his acclaimed work on Monsters, a film he wrote, directed and served on as cinematographer and visual effects artist. The skill and vision readily apparent in Monsters earned him the high-profile spot directing this year’s smash hit Godzilla.
“Ever since I saw Star Wars I knew exactly what I wanted to do for the rest of my life – join the Rebel Alliance! I could not be more excited and honored to go on this mission with Lucasfilm, said Edwards.
Gary Whitta’s screenwriting credits include 2010s The Book of Eli starring Denzel Washington. He is also well known as a journalist and editor in the video game industry, as well as part of the BAFTA award-winning team on Telltale Games adaptation of The Walking Dead.
Whitta states, “From the moment I first saw the original movie as a wide-eyed kid, Star Wars has been the single most profound inspiration to my imagination and to my career as a writer. It is deeply special to me,so to be given the opportunity to contribute to its ongoing legacy, especially in collaboration with a film-maker as talented as Gareth,is literally a dream come true. I’m still pinching myself.”