As I was heading to bed, I saw Umberto Gonzalez post a piece of breaking news that will presumably be confirmed by the “Star Wars” panel later today in Hall H.
Right now, Rian Johnson is gearing up on “Episode 8,” and JJ Abrams is hard at work wrapping up post-production on “The Force Awakens,” our re-introduction to the ongoing saga of the Skywalker family. It is a fascinating time for me as a first generation “Star Wars” fan. At this point, my kids are far more actively engaged in fandom than I am. They religiously watch “Star Wars: Rebels,” they've seen every episode of “The Clone Wars” about a dozen times, and they have watched the six films so many times that they've internalized them.
The “Star Wars Anthology” films are going to be chances for people to play around with style and with storytelling in some different ways. “Rogue One” is exciting precisely because it will be the first theatrical “Star Wars” film that isn't about the Skywalkers in any way. Sure, it's set in that time period, but it's a story about rebellion and a desperate mission and new characters, and Gareth Edwards is going to have a lot of room to make it look different than the main series. The same is true of the Miller/Lord “Han Solo” film. I've heard that the “Anthology” films are being released when they are because they will augment or compliment or in some way bounce off of the main chapter that comes before it. I'm curious to see if that pans out, or if they're basically just totally different things under the same banner.
It wasn't surprising that Lucasfilm was willing to give Josh Trank a chance to direct one of the “Anthology” films, but Trevorrow landing “Episode 9” is a much bigger deal. It's not only one of the main series films, but it's the conclusion of this new trilogy, and it's going to be one of the most anticipated releases of all time when it finally comes out in 2019. His tremendous success with “Jurassic World,” a fairly high-stakes job in its own right, has changed everything for Trevorrow, and if this is indeed announced during the Comic-Con panel, then he's off and running for what will be a monumental adventure.
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” is in theaters December 17, 2015.