As Disney is busy plotting the future of the Star Wars franchise, it seems like they are following the same sort of approach as with their Marvel Cinematic Universe. When Disney acquired Marvel Studios in 2009, they began constructing an interconnected universe of new movies, TV series, and animated series. One of the reasons why the Marvel Cinematic Universe works as well as it does is because it has producer Kevin Feige and director Joss Whedon overseeing every piece of development. It’s why DC Comics is still having a hard time catching up to Marvel with their own burgeoning expanded universe series of films. If Lucasfilm plans to follow in the footsteps of Marvel, who will take the role of the Star Wars universe’s new mastermind? Rumor has it: J.J. Abrams.
According to StarWars7News.com, director J.J. Abrams would fill the creative consultant role for every piece of the new Star Wars expanded movie universe. The site continues to say that Abrams’ involvement will not stop with Star Wars: Episode VII, but will continue on for the foreseeable future. Considering the unproven source, we suggest swallowing this with a good amount of salt. StarWars7News.com writes:
I heard from sources close to Abrams that his involvement with Star Wars will be huge. For now he may only be directing Episode 7 but also he will supervise and consult all other side projects from the franchise — games, spin-off movies, TV series etc. And while Kathleen Kennedy will be the managing core of the franchise Abrams will be the creative core through which everything will pass.
If true, it would obviously be very unlikely Abrams would be able to direct Star Trek 3, something that was already looking unlikely just with him directing Episode VII. Abrams and Kennedy would essentially be filling the roles that Star Wars creator George Lucas and producer Rick McCallum occupied prior to Disney’s purchase of Lucasfilm. Now that the pair is out of the picture, the Star Wars franchise needs a central creative force (no pun intended) to shape and mold the expanding franchise.
On the other hand, io9 suggests that, while it seems possible, Abrams doesn’t seemed geared to fill the “Kevin Feige” role for Lucasfilm and Star Wars. They suggest his role would be more similar to the approach he’s taken with the rebooted Star Trek series. io9 writes:
The report claims that Abrams demanded such control as a condition of directing Episode VII — which doesn’t necessarily fit all that well with how he approached the Star Trek franchise, where every move he made when not actually directing the films seemed geared to allow him to retain the greatest amount of scheduling freedom and flexibility.
Despite Abrams’ cinematic accomplishments with Mission: Impossible III, Super 8, and Star Trek Into Darkness, would Disney and Lucasfilm really hand the keys to the Star Wars to someone who has yet to make an actual Star Wars movie? At the moment, it seems highly unlikely.
Star Wars: Episode VII will hit theaters everywhere sometime during the summer of 2015.