It looks like the folks at Lucasfilm and Disney are on the hunt for a new director as Josh Trank announced that he was leaving his Star Wars project.
It was with much fanfare that the Fantastic Four director was announced as the director of the second Star Wars Anthology film last June. At the time, Trank said that, “The magic of the Star Wars Universe defined my entire childhood. The opportunity to expand on that experience for future generations is the most incredible dream of all time.”
Now it appears that dream has come to an end.
In a joint statement with Lucasfilm, Trank announced his decision to leave the highly-anticipated film.Trank said, “After a year of having the incredible honor of developing with the wonderful and talented people at Lucasfilm, I’m making a personal decision to move forward on a different path. I’ve put a tremendous amount of thought into this, and I know deep down in my heart that I want to pursue some original creative opportunities. That said, the Star Wars universe has always been one of my biggest influences, and I couldn’t be more excited to witness its future alongside my millions of fellow Star Wars fans. I want to thank my friends Kathleen Kennedy, Kiri Hart, Simon Kinberg, and everyone at Lucasfilm and Disney for the amazing opportunity to have been a part of this. May the Force be with you all.”
Lucasfilm VP of Development Kiri Hart said, “It was a privilege to collaborate with Josh. We are grateful for the energy and love of Star Wars that he brought to the process, and we wish him all the best.”
The news of Trank’s departure comes weeks after his failed appearance at the Star Wars Celebration Anaheim, where he was due to be involved in one of the panels. The official word at the time was “illness,” but the Hollywood Reporter reports that “multiple knowledgeable sources say the studio had asked the filmmaker not to attend while considering whether to proceed with him on the second spinoff in a planned series of films.”
Lucasfilm has confirmed that development of the film is still continuing.
While no doubt a set back to the project and it is sad to see Trank leave, it does present Lucasfilm and Disney with the opportunity to do something very radical in the realm of fantasy/sci-fi blockbuster films… hiring a female director. Surely it was not just men like J.J. Abrams that were inspired by seeing the opening sequence of Star Wars: A New Hope bursting on the cinema screen all those years ago and thought “yeah I want to do that.”
Last October, Forbes did an article on the “10 Female Directors Who Should Direct The ‘Wonder Woman’ Movie.” This is an amazing collection of brilliant female directors, many with the skills and experience to do a film such as this. I particularly like the options of Frozen’s Jennifer Lee (added bonus that she’s already in the Disney family), Kung Fu Panda 2’s Jennifer Yuh, and The Hurt Locker’s Kathryn Bigelow. Now’s your chance Lucasfilm and Disney, it’s certainly worth considering.
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