Damon Lindelof Didn’t Leave His Star Wars Movie By Choice

Damon Lindelof says he was asked to abandon his Star Wars movie.

By Zack Zagranis | Updated

star wars: knights of the old republic

Looks like Lucasfilm executed an Order 66 on Damon Lindelof’s Star Wars movie. According to Esquire, the Lost co-creator didn’t decide to abandon the Star Wars project he was working on; it was Disney who decided for him.  “I was in more than talks to join the Star Wars universe,” Lindelof admitted, “I joined the Star Wars universe and was asked to leave.” 

Lindelof has previously described his discarded Star Wars script as a “Labor of love.” All that is known about Damon’s abandoned project comes from rumors circulating online suggesting the story would follow an elderly Rey as she trained two new Jedi knights. One of the Jedi knights would have potentially been played by the star of Lindelof’s Watchmen sequel, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II.

Damon Lindelof was close-lipped about why he was fired, leaving others to wonder if there were creative differences between him and Lucasfilm’s Kathleen Kennedy. One possible reason for the cancelation of Lindelof’s Star Wars movie is the recently announced Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy helmed film that also serves as Rey’s reintroduction to the Star Wars universe.

Unfortunately, there’s no way of knowing if Obaid-Chinoy’s project was being developed concurrently with Lindelof’s and simply ended up being the better premise or if Disney ordered its development after they axed Lindelof’s movie.

rey lightsabers star wars

Meanwhile, Lindelof plans to “get back in line outside the club and try to get back in again” in regards to working on another Star Wars project, citing the old adage, “If at first you don’t succeed, try and try again.” Unfortunately, the writer followed this up with “or again again try, as Yoda would say,” essentially giving Star Wars fans a peek into Lindelof’s devotion to Star Wars–or lack thereof. While it may seem pedantic to point out, the character Lindelof is proposing to mimic is most famous for literally telling Luke Skywalker to “Do, or do not. There is no try.”

Sadly, Damon Lindelof has a bit of a reputation for mistreating established franchises. The writer was responsible for the Prometheus screenplay, an Alien prequel with lofty ideas involving creation that doesn’t hit what it is aiming for. Perhaps even more egregious was Star Trek Into Darkness, a weird Wrath of Khan remake that took J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek universe in the wrong direction.

Even with a well-received project like Watchmen, the apparent Star Wars fan still managed to piss someone off. This time it wasn’t the fans but Watchmen creator Alan Moore. Lindelof contacted Moore with a letter that began, “Dear Mr. Moore, I am one of the bastards currently destroying Watchmen,” which prompted Moore to respond, “Look, this is embarrassing to me. I don’t want anything to do with you or your show. Please don’t bother me again.”

In Lindelof’s defense, Moore disavows any television or movie projects based on his work. On the other hand, that fact is well documented, and it speaks to Lindelof’s hubris that he thought he was the one creator that could get Moore to reverse his decades-old stance. Could that same hubris have been what rubbed Disney execs the wrong way about Lindelof’s Star Wars script?

It’s definitely possible. Damon Lindelof is one of those divisive creators that people either really love or really hate. For every Lost, there’s a Cowboys & Aliens in Lindelof’s closet. For every The Leftovers, there’s a Tomorrowland hiding under the bed waiting to jump out and scare execs with a less-than-stellar box office.

Whether you like Lindelof’s work or not, there’s a good chance Star Wars fans dodged a bullet when it comes to the writer’s canceled Star Wars movie.