JJ Abrams May Be More Important To Star Wars' Future Than We Thought

The process of resurrecting what’s arguably the most cherished film franchise in movie-geek history has to be draining. So after helming Star Wars: The Force Awakens, J.J. Abrams needs a break. No one would blame him. He’s bearing the weight of ludicrous expectations on his shoulders, and I’m sure that he wants to disappear for a while once post-production finally wraps on this anticipated Star Wars endeavor. But he might not be gone for too long.

Latino-Review is going on record to say that J.J. Abrams is the frontrunner on the short list of directorial candidates to step behind the camera for Star Wars: Episode IX. The report claims that Disney is extremely happy with the outcome of The Force Awakens, and while this is a rumor surrounding a sequel that isn’t due in theaters until 2019, enough sources have verified Abrams’ name that the site felt comfortable moving forward with the information.

It makes total and complete sense. Not that J.J. Abrams is the new George Lucas, but he has been in on the ground floor of development on this new trilogy of Star Wars films, and no doubt has a mental plan in place for how the storyline should continue and, eventually, conclude. As we reported, Abrams will pass the baton to Looper director Rian Johnson for Star Wars: Episode VIII, which recently picked up a May 26, 2017 release date. By freeing himself up from the duties and responsibilities of the next Star Wars, that gives Abrams and his team the perfect amount of time to regroup, recharge, and return to the fray to stick the landing on an exciting trilogy of films that he will kick start in December.

Plus, if you have watched this trailer as often as I have, you get the sense that Abrams did a kick ass job on The Force Awakens, so locking him up for Episode IX would be a win for Disney, for Abrams, and for the fans.

Disney has promised a massive announcement to kick off its Star Wars Celebration in Anaheim in April. Could it be the confirmation that J.J. Abrams is back in the fold for the planned Episode IX? That’s possible, as we also know that The Fantastic Four director Josh Trank is down for a solo, standalone Star Wars movie. Securing Abrams would mean that the immediate future of the studio’s Star Wars plans are in good hands. What do you think? Is Abrams the right guy? Or were you burned by Star Trek Into Darkness, and you need to see how The Force Awakens plays before you officially sign on?

Sean O'Connell
Managing Editor

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. Having been with the site since 2011, Sean interviewed myriad directors, actors and producers, and created ReelBlend, which he proudly cohosts with Jake Hamilton and Kevin McCarthy. And he's the author of RELEASE THE SNYDER CUT, the Spider-Man history book WITH GREAT POWER, and an upcoming book about Bruce Willis.