Director Colin Trevorrow is out; J.J. Abrams is in.
Earlier this month, Lucasfilm released a statement announcing the “Jurassic World” director was exiting the project: “Lucasfilm and Colin Trevorrow have mutually chosen to part ways on ‘Star Wars: Episode IX’. Colin has been a wonderful collaborator throughout the development process but we have all come to the conclusion that our visions for the project differ. We wish Colin the best and will be sharing more information about the film soon.”
On Tuesday, it was announced that “The Force Awakens” director J.J. Abrams will step back in to direct “Star Wars: Episode IX”. Abrams will also co-write the film with Chris Terrio. This follows rumours that Trevorrow had several issues with the script that eventually strained his working relationship with Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy.
The exit marks the third director to be replaced on a Star Wars project.
Back in 2015, Trevorrow was announced as director of “Episode IX”, the third film in the trilogy that began with “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” and continues with “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”, due later this year. Production problems have dogged the “Star Wars” spinoffs behind the scenes.
The news of Trevorrow’s exit comes just months after directing duo Phil Lord and Chris Miller vacated the still-untitled Han Solo spinoff due to “different creative visions” while production on the film was already underway. They were quickly replaced by veteran director Ron Howard two days later. Two years earlier, the company parted ways with “Chronicle” director Josh Trank who was on board to helm the third standalone franchise film, following “Rogue One” and the Han Solo movie. British director Stephen Daldry is in talks to helm the third spinoff film.
While “Rogue One” was a success at the box office and with critics, the movie underwent extensive re-shoots, at one point with the film’s screenwriter Tony Gilroy stepping in for director Gareth Edwards.
Although Trevorrow found success with “Jurassic World”, his most recent film, “The Book Of Henry”, was a failure with audiences and critics alike, quickly spawning rumours of his impending departure from “Episode IX”.
Trevorrow also penned the “Star Wars” script with his “Safety Not Guaranteed” co-writer Derek Connolly, however, playwright Jack Thorne was brought in to do a comprehensive re-write of the screenplay.