Colin Trevorrow Out of Star Wars Episode IX

Colin Trevorrow Out as Director of “Star Wars: Episode IX”

Things aren't going so well over at Lucasfilm. Yes, The Force Awakens is the biggest movie of all time in the U.S. Yes, Rogue One was the biggest movie of 2016. But behind the scenes, something is off. Earlier this year, Phil Lord and Chris Miller were fired as directors of the Han Solo prequel with just weeks left to go. And now Colin Trevorrow, who was slated to direct Episode IX, is out of a job as well.

While a lot of critics and Twitter snobs weren't excited about Trevorrow when he was first announced, he seemed like a safe bet. Safety Not Guaranteed was a charming bit of indie sci-fi, and Jurassic World was one of the biggest movies of all time. While his latest film, The Book of Henry, was rejected by both critics and audiences, that alone wouldn't explain his firing.

The official line is that both he and Lucasfilm decided to part ways because of "competing visions," but it's hard to know exactly what that vision is, since I don't think anyone could point to a specific Trevorrow style. And this is the kind of worrisome language that Disney used when Edgar Wright quit Ant-Man and Ava DuVernay turned down Black Panther.

From this outsider's perspective, it seems that Disney wants to bring onboard promising younger directors for their projects, so long as they don't try to put any of the style that made them so promising into their big tentpoles. That could spell trouble as they try to recruit directors for future Star Wars projects.

No replacement director has been named yet, but many sites are speculating that Rian Johnson (director of Episode VIII: The Last Jedi) will get the call. That's of course assuming he wants to do another and not take a well-earned vacation or do a more personal project. Other names tossed into the world just because: Ava DuVernay (who's finishing up A Wrinkle in Time for Disney), Guillermo Del Toro (who helmed two comic book movies and Pacific Rim) and my personal choice George Miller, because Star Wars could use something as wild as Mad Max: Fury Road.

Star Wars: Episode IX still does not have a subtitle but is still scheduled to open Memorial Day Weekend 2019.

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About Kip Mooney

Kip Mooney
Like many film critics born during and after the 1980s, my hero is Roger Ebert. The man was already the best critic in the nation when he won the Pulitzer in 1975, but his indomitable spirit during and after his recent battle with cancer keeps me coming back to read not only his reviews but his insightful commentary on the everyday. But enough about a guy you know a lot about. I knew I was going to be a film critic—some would say a snob—in middle school, when I had to voraciously defend my position that The Royal Tenenbaums was only a million times better than Adam Sandler’s remake of Mr. Deeds. From then on, I would seek out Wes Anderson’s films and avoid Sandler’s like the plague. Still, I like to think of myself as a populist, and I’ll be just as likely to see the next superhero movie as the next Sundance sensation. The thing I most deplore in a movie is laziness. I’d much rather see movies with big ambitions try and fail than movies with no ambitions succeed at simply existing. I’m also a big advocate of fun-bad movies like The Room and most of Nicolas Cage’s work. In the past, I’ve written for The Dallas Morning News and the North Texas Daily, which I edited for a semester. I also contributed to Dallas-based Pegasus News, which in the circle of life, is now part of The Dallas Morning News, where I got my big break in 2007. Eventually, I’d love to write and talk about film full-time, but until that’s a viable career option, I work as an auditor for Wells Fargo. I hope to one day meet my hero, go to the Toronto International Film Festival, and compete on Jeopardy. Until then, I’m excited to share my love of film with you.

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