“Look, Star Wars is one of my favorite movies of all time,” J.J. Abrams told HollywoodLife.com just two months ago. “I frankly feel that – I almost feel that, in a weird way, the opportunity for whomever it is to direct that movie, it comes with the burden of being that kind of iconic movie and series. I was never a big Star Trek fan growing up, so for me, working on Star Trek didn’t have any of that, you know, almost fatal sacrilege, and so, I am looking forward more than anyone to the next iterations of Star Wars, but I believe I will be going as a paying moviegoer!”
Well, guess what? It looks like J.J. Abrams will be directing episode seven of Star Wars after all. It’s unclear at this point how Disney managed to make Abrams change his mind (we’re guessing that a hefty paycheck may have had something to do with it), but both Deadline and The Wrap are confirming that J.J. Abrams did indeed land the job. Apparently Ben Affleck was also in the running for the gig, but the Disney execs seem to have recognized that it makes more sense to put a blockbuster veteran in charge of a $200 million blockbuster rather than someone whose three movies are low budget character dramas that are completely devoid of special effects.
Of course, what the Disney execs don’t seem to have recognized is that having the director of Star Trek take over the Star Wars franchise is a bit like having the Pope take over for the Dalai Lama—it’s weird, it feels wrong, and it will probably leave a lot of people deeply unsatisfied.