Job Description: you will be directing Star Wars: Episode VII, the most anticipated sequel of all time. Not only are you tasked with roping in a new generation of fans, but your product must be good enough to erase the sour memories of Episode I, II & III. The next four years of your life will be a media whirlwind; every facet of your job will be deconstructed like a Lego set. Things that might not even make it into the movie – hypothetical characters, unfinished set designs – will find a way online, where fanboys will spend hours praising or destroying.
J.J. Abrams, science fiction’s BMOC, is. After an exhaustive search that included Ben Affleck, Abrams appears ready to step into George Lucas’ director chair. This news comes from The Wrap, who reports that:
“Lucasfilm Chief Kathleen Kennedy has been courting Abrams, one of the most successful directors and producers in Hollywood — and a man beloved by fanboys. He runs one of the industry’s top production companies, Bad Robot, and created or co-created television franchises like “Lost,” “Fringe” and “Alias.” He has also directed film spectacles “Mission: Impossible III,” “Star Trek” and “Super 8.”
Star Wars fans should approach this with guarded optimism. Abrams has some real gems under his belt – Star Trek was and is the shit, Mission: Impossible III might have been the best in the franchise, and that first season of Lost is still must-watch television. But his last big-screen film, Super 8, was a letdown, forgoing Abrams’s typically gritty, character-driven style in favor of something more lily-white and wholesome. I want to see Star Trek Abrams direct this; given the whiffs that the Star Wars franchise has taken when trying to appeal to the whole family, let’s hope that J.J. is given the creative freedom to stay true to himself. The world isn’t big enough for another Jar Jar Binks.