Rian Johnson Star Wars Project Happening Despite Fan Backlash?

Although nothing official has been announced, Rian Johnson is still hopeful to return to Star Wars.

By Sckylar Gibby-Brown | Published

Rian Johnson, director of Star Wars: Episode VIII: The Last Jedi, says it’s his goal to direct more Star Wars films, according to a tweet from The Hollywood Reporter. After the horrible reception from fans of his last attempt at creating a Star Wars movie, it’s understandable that fans of the franchise are less than thrilled.

When the self-titled Star Wars (later subtitled Episode IV: A New Hope) was first released in 1977, no one was expecting the cowboy-movie-in-space to create a worldwide phenomenon that would last for generations, and yet it did. The popularity of the Star Wars universe expanded to the productions of the prequels in the early 2000s and then to the sequels and many spin-offs and streaming series that have been released since then.

While every new rendition of the Star Wars franchise has been met with mixed reviews, it was generally acknowledged by the franchise’s fanbase that Rian Johnson’s Star Wars was a dud. The backlash received by The Last Jedi was so strong that Disney put Johnson’s planned Star Wars trilogy on the back burner.

Mark Hamill
Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi

The move to trash the Johnson trilogy seemed to have paid off for Star Wars franchise owners Lucasfilms and Disney, as they strategized to focus their efforts on expanding the Star Wars world through shows like The Mandalorian, The Book of Boba Fett, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Andor, which have been a critical success.

Recently, a new Star Wars series has been revealed. The Acolyte, headed by Leslye Headland, follows a Jedi and her Padawan investigating crimes and uncovering a Sith conspiracy 100 years before The Phantom Menace takes place. The show, which is currently filming and set to release in 2024, comes highly anticipated and is expected to be a critical success like The Mandalorian

Despite the success Disney has had by pivoting away from his trilogy and into the streaming space, Rian Johnson hopes to return to the Star Wars universe soon. In the interview tweeted by The Hollywood Reporter, Johnson said that now is an exciting time to be a part of the franchise because of all the expansions that have been produced. By including so many creative people to head their abundance of shows, Johnson says there is a “smörgåsbord” of content where viewers now have more of a choice of what to watch.

Johnson said he had the best experience of his life creating The Last Jedi and that he is in talks with the president of Lucasfilm, Kathleen Kennedy, about directing for Star Wars again. It is unclear if Johnson’s return to the Star Wars universe would be to continue his abandoned trilogy, or to start on a new story in the galaxy far, far away.

Whichever option might happen, one thing is for certain— if Rian Johnson returns to Star Wars, it better be good. Otherwise, the fans will not hesitate to tear him down.

Recently, Johnson has kept busy directing the hilarious murder mystery thrillers Knives Out and its sequel, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, with a Knives Out 3 in the works.