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Old 12-19-2015, 02:10 PM   #26
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Default Re: Lucasfilm: The Kennedy Era

Wait. The producer in charge of the Star Wars franchise and the producer in charge of the Jurassic Park franchise are married? Their kids are gonna have a good-ass holiday this year.

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Old 09-14-2016, 10:26 AM   #27
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Turner Nabs 10 ‘Star Wars’ Movies In Mega Deal With Walt Disney Studios
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Originally Posted by Nellie Andreeva
In what is believed to be the biggest movie package sold to ad-supported TV networks, Turner has closed a domestic licensing deal with The Walt Disney Studios for the linear basic cable and companion ad-supported on-demand rights to 10 Star Wars movies — last year’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens, this year’s standalone Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, the next three yet-to-be-released movies in the franchise as well as five of the six previous Star Wars films. Additionally, Turner has secured the only Star Wars movie whose rights are not controlled by Lucasfilm/Disney, the original Star Wars: A New Hope, via a separate arrangement with 20th Century Fox, becoming the only basic cable company holding rights to all 11 titles in the collection.

Turner and Walt Disney Studios are not commenting but sources estimate that the 10-title package is in the neighborhood of $200 million. Its sale comes after a highly atypical, year-long on-and-off process. Disney first sent out feelers that it was going to shop The Force Awakens (and other Star Wars movies) a year ago, ahead of the movie’s December premiere. That ultimately didn’t happen, and the movie was officially taken out at NATPE in January. But even after that, the Star Wars package was on the market, then off, then on again, with the selling paused a number of times. Still, the buyers came out in full force. There virtually was no basic cable network that did not bid for the movies but Turner was the most aggressive from the get-go, blowing the others out of the outer.

Using Star Wars as leverage, I hear the Disney package also includes other — mostly underperforming movies, something that is common practice when highly sought after titles are in play. I hear that includes recent releases Alice Through the Looking Glass and Pete’s Dragon. Another aspect of the deal is that it only includes ad-supported on-demand rights, not commercial-free SVOD rights which are part of Disney’s deals with Starz (for The Force Awakens) and Starz’s successor Netfix for the next Star Wars films. It remains to be seen if viewers, who are used to streaming movies with no ads, will embrace watching Star Wars with commercials on demand.

Turner will kick off the Star Wars run with a six-night marathon on TNT featuring the first six movies which starts September 20. The films will also air in December, in conjunction with Disney’s theatrical release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Star Wars: The Force Awakens will make its TNT debut in early 2018, followed in 2019 by this year’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

“The Star Wars movies and characters are beloved across generations, captivating audiences and breaking box office records around the globe for nearly four decades,” said Deborah K. Bradley, EVP of networks optimization, content strategy and commercialization for Turner. “Through this deal, TNT and TBS will be the exclusive basic cable home of one of the most iconic, enduring and valuable movie franchises of all time, giving viewers the chance to watch this amazing collection from the very beginning.”

This is the second big package of Disney-released movies for TNT, which in 2014 closed a deal with Disney-owned Marvel Entertainment for five movies, including Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron and Marvel’s Captain America 3.

Here is the schedule for the six-night Star Wars launch event on TNT:

Tuesday, Sept. 20
8 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: The Phantom Menace
11 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: The Phantom Menace

Wednesday, Sept. 21
8 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: Attack of the Clones
11:05 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: Attack of the Clones

Thursday, Sept. 22
8 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
11:05 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith

Friday, Sept. 23
8 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: A New Hope
10:45 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: A New Hope

Saturday, Sept. 24
10:45 a.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: The Phantom Menace
1:45 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: Attack of the Clones
4:55 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
8 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
10:45 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

Sunday, Sept. 25
5:15 a.m. Star Wars: The Phantom Menace
8:15 a.m. Star Wars: Attack of the Clones
11:20 a.m. Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
2:25 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: A New Hope
5:10 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
8 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
11 p.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
2 a.m. (ET/PT) – Star Wars: The Phantom Menace

________________________________________

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Old 09-14-2016, 10:35 AM   #28
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I'm surprised Turner was the one that nabbed the mega Star Wars deal. Would've thought FX or USA would be the ones to get it.

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Old 09-22-2016, 08:29 AM   #29
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Disney Already Plotting ‘Star Wars’ For “2021 and Beyond
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Originally Posted by Peter Sciretta
As for the future of the Star Wars franchise, Iger revealed that he met with Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy yesterday and “mapped out” the ‘Star Wars’ plans that we have ’til 2020.”
Quote:
“We have movies in development for ‘Star Wars’ ’til then, and we started talking about what we’re going to do in 2021 and beyond. So, she’s not just making a ‘Star Wars’ movie, she’s making a ‘Star Wars’ universe, of sorts.”

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Old 11-23-2016, 02:50 AM   #30
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Variety:
EXCLUSIVE: Inside Bob Iger’s Massive Disney Empire

‘Star Wars’: Lucasfilm Chief on ‘Rogue One,’ Han Solo Spinoff

Marvel’s Kevin Feige on ‘Spider-Man’s’ Future and Why Brie Larson Was Perfect for ‘Captain Marvel’



EW:
As Rogue One looms, Lucasfilm develops secret plans for new Star Wars movies
Will another new trilogy arise — or will stand-alone stories rule the galaxy?


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Old 06-21-2017, 08:13 PM   #31
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'Star Wars': Why the Han Solo Film Directors Were Fired
Ron Howard and Joe Johnston are possible contenders to replace Phil Lord and Christopher Miller.



THR MAY 01, 2015:
Inside a 'Star Wars' Firing: 'Fantastic Four' Problems Led to Director Josh Trank's Ouster



'Star Wars: Rogue One' Enlists Renowned Stunt Coordinator for Reshoots (Exclusive)
Simon Crane joins screenwriter Tony Gilroy in helping work on the first standalone 'Star Wars' movie.

'Rogue One' Drama: Writer Tony Gilroy Taking on More Duties
Gilroy, an uncredited writer on Disney's upcoming 'Star Wars' film, is "supervising" the edit with input from director Gareth Edwards and was heavily involved in five weeks of reshoots that tackled several issues, including the ending.

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Old 06-22-2017, 02:12 PM   #32
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The Millennium Falcon has a new pilot.
Ron Howard Steps in to Direct Han Solo Movie (Exclusive)


'Star Wars' Finally Gets a Ron Howard Movie — Should Fans Cheer?
The director, who once was offered 'Phantom Menace,' will be taking over the Han Solo movie from ousted filmmakers Phil Lord and Chris Miller.

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Old 06-23-2017, 07:56 AM   #33
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THR OCTOBER 24, 2013:
Writer Michael Arndt Exits 'Star Wars: Episode VII'

Should There Be Such a Rush to Make 'Star Wars' Films?
With the director shuffle on Lucasfilm's Han Solo movie, perhaps it's time to slow things down.

Ron Howard Says Han Solo Film Was "a Little Opportunity That Came My Way"
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhonda Richford
A day after being named the new director of Disney and Lucasfilm's untitled Han Solo movie, Ron Howard took to the stage at Cannes Lions on Friday and briefly discussed the opportunity to contribute to the Star Wars universe.

Interviewed on stage by Martin Sorrell, the founder and CEO of British ad company WPP, he called the film "a little opportunity that came my way."

The Oscar winner replaced Lego Movie and 21 Jump Street directors Phil Lord and Christoper Miller, who parted ways with the studio Tuesday citing "creative differences."

Howard later also said about Star Wars that "I've been a fan forever," adding: "It's gratifying to lend my voice to the Star Wars universe now."

The director also told the audience: "I've been around the Star Wars universe from the beginning," and explained George Lucas was conceiving the story while they were working on American Graffiti. When Lucas first told him the idea, he said he thought it sounded "crazy."

Howard recalled that when he first saw Star Wars, he waited in line with his wife for two hours. "We left almost speechless, and I said, 'Do you want to see it again?'" he said.?"And we got in line and waited another 90 minutes to see it twice the same day."

Howard on Friday also discussed the Trump presidency and how it will one day portrayed on the screen, joking: "I'm looking forward to the day that ... this presidency is dramatized years from now that it's a hysterical musical comedy on Broadway called Trumped."

Asked what's left to do for him, he said he'd love to do a Broadway musical and mentioned his team was working on an adaption of Nightshift and talking about possibly adapting Parenthood as well.

Discussing the project that he is most proud of, Howard mentioned Apollo 13.

Regarding the competition between Netflix, Amazon and others, Howard said: "I don't think there's going to be a winner. There may be a dominant platform, and I don't think it's going to be big screen movies."

He also said about streaming video services: "It's an exciting time you can tell more stories to niche audiences creatively, it's liberating."

Emilia Clarke, Woody Harrelson and Donald Glover will star in the Han Solo spin-off. Shooting is set to resume July 10.

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Old 06-24-2017, 01:30 AM   #34
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The Upwards Failing of Colin Trevorrow (and Why It Matters)

WHAT THE LORD AND MILLER FIRING MEANS TO THE OVERALL WORLD OF LUCASFILM
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Originally Posted by Neil Turitz
When the news broke the other day that Lucasfilm had fired the directing team of Phil Lord and Chris Miller off its Han Solo spinoff flick, a few things came to mind. First and foremost, there was the shock of a major project like this making such an enormous move, especially, ahem, five months into shooting.

After that, I took a moment to see what people were saying, and it came out that Lucasfilm chief Kathleen Kennedy wasn’t happy with the style and tone of the film that Lord and Miller were making, which led me to the second reaction, which was, “Well, jeez, who did she think she was hiring?” I mean, these are the guys behind Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, 21 Jump Street and its sequel, 22 Jump Street, and The LEGO Movie.

In other words, while the pair is immensely talented, these guys are not exactly Merchant and Ivory.

But after pondering that for a short spell, something else popped into my head, as I considered the history of Lucasfilm projects and one or two external incidents that directly relate to this particular cinematic universe. It was a dark thought, a sinister one, that I turned around a bit before I finally allowed myself to verbalize it, at which point I realized that, in even asking the question, I already had my answer.

Does Lucasfilm have itself a Director Problem?

After having given Warner Bros. so much guff for its issues with directors on the DC Comics movies, it would be unfair not to come to a similar conclusion here, simply because this is what the evidence suggests.

Most of the people reading this will be aware of the stürm und drang that surrounded last year’s Lucasfilm production of Rogue One, which essentially replaced director Gareth Edwards with Old Pro Tony Gilroy, as the experienced Gilroy came in with massive rewrites and directed large reshoots which, apparently (depending on who is talking) reshaped a good portion of the movie. That, in and of itself, should have been something of a red flag, but now this happens, and the central issue is inescapable.

And we haven’t even gotten into the catastrophe that is The Book of Henry, which is basically one of the worst reviewed films of the year, is going to be a major flop, and is a pretty large setback to its director, Colin Trevorrow. This is only important, mind you, because he is the man charged with writing and directing Episode IX of the Star Wars saga, due in theaters Memorial Day Weekend, 2019.

Apparently, the big difference between Lord and Miller and Edwards is that, when confronted with the idea of bringing in outside help to reshape things and oversee reshoots, Edwards said, “Sure, okay,” while Lord and Miller were not as eager to play along. This did not sit well with Kennedy, who has a very tight hold on all things Star Wars-related, and so she pulled the trigger on them, to the great and utter shock of Lord and Miller, who figured, naturally, that things would work themselves out.

There are a bunch of interesting factors here, not least of which is Kennedy’s desire to bring in hot, young, up-and-coming filmmakers, then refusing to allow them to do the things that drew her attention in the first place. For instance, with Lord and Miller, their style is much more loose and improvisational than what Kennedy is used to, as well as writer — and long time stalwart of the Lucasfilm Universe — Lawrence Kasdan, whose attitude is “You shoot the words that are on the page and don’t make them up as you go.” It seems he was at odds with Lord and Miller right from the start, so when they rejected out of hand the notion of dealing with someone else to come in and “help” them, it was time to let them go.

No matter, by the way, that some folks in the know were admirers of what the pair was doing, even while those same folks admitted it wasn’t a conventional Star Wars film, which was Kennedy’s whole point. Of course, others have said they were overmatched, out of their depth, and should never have been hired in the first place, so I think the only thing on which we can agree here is that no one is agreeing on anything.

Either way, the two just weren’t a good fit, whereas Rian Johnson, currently in post-production on December’s The Last Jedi, understands the Universe perfectly and, word has it, has Kennedy and her team very happy with his cut of the film. Which means that, if you liked The Force Awakens and Rogue One, you’re going to love Jedi.

Trevorrow is another issue, in that, while the Book of Henry fiasco might make him more pliable for Kennedy, the legitimate question has to be asked about whether or not he is up to the task. While I quite like his first film, Safety Not Guaranteed, I can’t say the same about his second, Jurassic World, which might have made a ton of money (and got a lot of good reviews I never quite understood), but just isn’t a good movie. Don’t get me wrong, I’m rooting for him, but this has to be of some concern to those in charge.

There’s also an important fact here that can’t be ignored: none of this is new. Lucasfilm has always had a director problem. George Lucas directed four of the first six, and while the first one is great, it’s also, in hindsight, badly flawed, and the three prequels are awful. When he brought in his film school professor, and old pro helmer, Irvin Kershner to direct The Empire Strikes Back, he let Kershner run the show without any real supervision, then was furious when the film didn’t really turn out the way he envisioned, even though it is by far the best film of the series.

It’s for that reason, in fact, that journeyman Richard Marquand was hired to helm Return of the Jedi, so that Lucas could control every aspect of the production and thus not have to deal with his personal vision being corrupted, as it had been with Kershner. There are tons of stories out there of how ineffectual Marquand was on set, as if he was nothing more than a proxy for the boss. Which, essentially, he was.

Which is sort of where we are now. It has become exceedingly clear that anyone signing up for one of these gigs in the future will have to be well aware what they’re in for, and then make the decision about whether or not being a sort of puppet for his or her Lucasfilm Overlords is how they want to spend a couple years of their career. Yes, it’s an insane opportunity to make a Star Wars film, but there are going to be a fair number of auteurs who will pass on the offer, simply because, while they might want to play with someone else’s toys, they won’t want to be instructed by said toy owner exactly how they’re allowed to play with them.

Yesterday, Ron Howard stepped into the director’s chair, a seasoned pro whose best films are in the rearview mirror, but who will almost certainly come in and do a professional job of fulfilling Kennedy’s vision, in a way that first Edwards, and then Lord and Miller, weren’t.

Because let’s face it — at this point, what has become obvious is that the vision to be fulfilled, from here on out, is Kennedy’s, and woe be to any director who thinks differently.

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Old 06-24-2017, 02:20 AM   #35
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Sort of a dumb headline accusing Colin Trevorrow of failing upward.

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Old 09-09-2017, 05:50 AM   #36
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Vulture September 8, 2017:
Colin Trevorrow’s Firing From Star Wars Is Another Reminder That No Director Will Ever Be Bigger Than the Franchise
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Lee
Earlier this week, a disturbance in the Force triggered paroxysms of anguish and confusion across the galaxy. That is to say, since the Tuesday announcement of Colin Trevorrow’s firing as director of Star Wars: Episode IX (with Lucasfilm reaching the conclusion that his and the company’s “visions for the project differ”), Hollywood’s chattering class has been trying to figure out: How did this bona fide blockbuster filmmaker come to be laid so low?

Conspiracy Theory A maintains that The Book of Henry — Trevorrow’s critically mauled, commercially stillborn art-house passion project — which arrived as the June follow-up to his $1.6-billion-grossing sophomore co-writing/directorial effort Jurassic World — may have given Lucasfilm cold feet. Star Wars remains, after 40 years, eight films, and a combined $7.5 billion at the box office, arguably moviedom’s most valuable intellectual property. And Henry’s craptacular reception exposed glaring liabilities in the director’s ability to make the jump to lightspeed, as the thinking goes.

But to hear speculation from a ranking Hollywood movie insider with direct knowledge of the productions on both The Book of Henry and Jurassic World (and who requested anonymity out of concern for sensitive ongoing business relationships), Trevorrow’s firing may have come more directly as a consequence of being “difficult.”

“During the making of Jurassic World, he focused a great deal of his creative energies on asserting his opinion,” the executive explains. “But because he had been personally hired by Spielberg, nobody could say, ‘You’re fired.’ Once that film went through the roof and he chose to do Henry, [Trevorrow] was unbearable. He had an egotistical point of view— and he was always asserting that.”

Then, during preproduction on Episode IX, Trevorrow’s relationship with Lucasfilm top brass became reportedly “unmanageable” over the course of “repeated stabs at multiple drafts” of the script.

“When the reviews for Book of Henry came out, there was immediately conjecture that Kathy was going to dump him because they weren’t thrilled with working with him anyway,” the executive continues. “He’s a difficult guy. He’s really, really, really confident. Let’s call it that.”

Kathy, of course, is eight-time Academy Award–nominated Lucasfilm president/Star Wars brand manager Kathleen Kennedy, who found herself beneath the red-hot scrutiny of Movie Twitter in June after firing co-directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller from the Han Solo spinoff prequel. And in terms of that surfeit of self-belief, Trevorrow admitted to as much in an interview with Esquire in 2015. “Directors require a level of confidence that can border on the delusional,” Trevorrow said. “You have to push it right up to the edge of arrogance, but never cross the line.”

Which really would be nothing new in an industry where gigantic egos are as common as Tesla Xs, and directors convinced of their own Kubrickian greatness come a dime a dozen. But by the point of his supernova success with Jurassic World, it’s worth noting Trevorrow had become inextricably linked to the scourge of white male privilege in Hollywood. In an era when men are almost 12 times more likely to direct movies than women, and minorities continue to lose ground as directors (according to the 2017 Hollywood Diversity Report), he landed the coveted Jurassic job on the strength of a single film, the quirky 2012 Sundance sci-fi dramedy Safety Not Guaranteed.

This evolved into such an inescapable talking point, Trevorrow even admitted to the Los Angeles Times, “[It] hurts my feelings when I’m used as an example of white male privilege.”

Still, the decision to bounce him from the project ultimately fell to Kennedy, who, five years into her Lucasfilm tenure, is showing less and less compunction about firing or replacing directors she feels are temperamentally or creatively unsuited to the job, having also overseen the resignation of Fantastic Four director Josh Trank from another stand-alone Star Wars film in 2015.

“There’s one gatekeeper when it comes to Star Wars and it’s Kathleen Kennedy,” says a veteran movie producer, who has worked with the studio chief. “If you rub Kathleen Kennedy the wrong way — in any way — you’re out. You’re done. A lot of these young, new directors want to come in and say, ‘I want to do this. I want to do that.’ A lot of these guys — Lord and Miller, Colin Trevorrow — got very rich, very fast and believed a lot of their own hype. And they don’t want to play by the rules. They want to do **** differently. And Kathleen Kennedy isn’t going to **** around with that.

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Old 11-10-2017, 02:05 AM   #37
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STAR WARS NOVEMBER 9, 2017:
RIAN JOHNSON, WRITER-DIRECTOR OF STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI, TO CREATE ALL-NEW STAR WARS TRILOGY

THR NOVEMBER 09, 2017:
Is Rian Johnson's New Trilogy Exactly What 'Star Wars' Needs?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Graeme McMillan
The news that director Rian Johnson is staying in a galaxy far, far away after Star Wars: The Last Jedi is a surprise on a number of levels, and one that suggests that Lucasfilm is learning from mistakes made over the past couple of years.

After all, there's a lot that's different in the announcement of Johnson's new trilogy from what has been Lucasfilm's process since the company was purchased by Disney some years ago. Lucasfilm took pains to point out this will not be part of the "Skywalker Saga," so this isn't Episodes X, XI and XII here. And while both Lucasfilm and Disney have made attempts to expand Star Wars outside of the "Skywalker Saga" movies with Rogue One and the upcoming young Han Solo movie Solo, neither of those have had the scope or ambition of this new move, as they have been tied to existing characters and concepts… and yet, this new trilogy news is still likely to cause less anxiety amongst studio executives.

The difference, at least as far as that last point goes, is that Johnson is a known quantity to Lucasfilm in terms of being a creative partner. Indeed, although the movie has yet to be released, even trailers teasing his work on Last Jedi have prompted a level of excitement amongst fans and executives alike that rival that for J.J. Abrams' The Force Awakens back in 2015. It's not just that Johnson loves Star Wars, and has a particular affinity for the original movies — the same could be said for everyone the studio has partnered with since the franchise relaunch — but that the helmer has demonstrated quite how well he plays within the studio's sandbox and works with the various other entities involved in the maintenance and creation of the larger franchise.

Compare this to Gareth Edwards, whose Rogue One: A Star Wars Story underwent extensive reshoots under the direction of Tony Gilroy, or to Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, removed from Solo: A Star Wars Story before initial production had even been completed. Or, for that matter, Colin Trevorrow, the original director of 2019's Star Wars: Episode IX, replaced before production had even started by returning helmer J.J. Abrams. Although the details of what happened in each case remain somewhat murky — and, likely, always will — it's clear that, for some reason or another, they didn't necessarily fit the creative vision of Lucasfilm as a whole, even when creating small offshoots of the larger story, filling in backstory and gaps in ways that seemed not exactly risky.

This new trilogy, by comparison, feels like the fulfillment of something that Lucasfilm has been searching for for some time. Not only in terms of length — a new trilogy, which feels like something on par with the "Skywalker Saga," which is also told in three chapter chunks — but in subject matter, as well. By focusing on, in Lucasfilm's words, "new characters from a corner of the galaxy that Star Wars lore has never before explored," Johnson is actually managing to expand the galaxy beyond the central storyline that everything to date has dealt with, in the process setting the franchise up for a longevity that it arguably lacked previously. After all, there's only so far that you can go with the Skywalkers and their friends, especially with stand-alone movies strip-mining that series for parts as it goes along.

The news does make me wonder what the long-term future of the Star Wars Story movies is; to date, the two that audiences know of have had difficult births, which might make Lucasfilm reconsider the original plan of releasing one every two years — especially if this new trilogy might want to take that slot in the release schedule instead. (Or perhaps we're headed towards an era of multiple Star Wars movies a year, a la Disney's other big nerd engine, the Marvel movies.) Also, if Johnson is charting new space with his trilogy, does this mean future Star Wars Story movies could move further afield from mining the era between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, if the series continues? We can but hope.

In many ways, the Johnson trilogy feels like a culmination of Lucasfilm's Disney era to date, something that could only have come after the growing pains of hiring and firing directors to fully comprehend how elastic the franchise can be in terms of narrative voice and subject matter, as well as finding a creator who is as engaged with the material and the process of making Star Wars as Johnson turned out to be. It's taken a few years, but this might be just where Disney wanted Star Wars to be all along.

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