Kathleen Kennedy, JJ Abrams and Star Wars: Episode VII

News Simon Brew 31 Jan 2013 - 07:02
The Star Wars logo.

How did the producer of Star Wars: Episode VII persuade JJ Abrams to sign up to direct?

The dust is settling a little now over the announcement that JJ Abrams has been confirmed as the director of the new Star Wars film. However, there's still a question over how Abrams was persuaded to do the film. As The Hollywood Reporter has uncovered, it was back in December that things started to fall into place.

Abrams was reportedly "flipping out" when the news landed that Lawrence Kasdan was on board for the new Star Wars movies, and he recalled that "the thing about any pre-existing franchise - I'd sort of done that. But when I met with Kathy, it was suddenly very tantalising".

Kennedy says that Abrams was still a little reticent, given his commitments to the Star Trek movies (of which he's committed to at least produce a third), but she said that when she left their original December meeting, "JJ was just on the ceiling when I walked out the door".

She added that "we spent a lot of time talking about how meaningful Star Wars is and the depth of the mythology that George has created, and how we can carry that into the next chapter", with Abrams ultimately committing to take on the project.

Kennedy also said that the plan is to move forward "as quickly as we can", with the pre-announced summer 2015 release date in mind. But she did add that "the timetable we care about is getting the story". So there's still the possibility that Star Wars: Episode VII may land a little later...

The Hollywood Reporter

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