After J.J. Abrams has completed his duties on Episode VII, Rian Johnson, who directed Looper, will take over the franchise set in a galaxy far, far away.
According to various reports from Deadline and The Wrap, Johnson will get started immediately as this will be his preoccupation for quite sometime. Johnson will take over the core film franchise by writing and directing Episode VIII and will only write the treatment Episode IX. Ram Bergman, who also produced “Looper” and “Brick,” with Johnson will do the same for his “Star Wars” movie.
Disney and Lucasfilm have been aggressive in their hiring of talented young directors to oversee the Star Wars franchise. They hired both “Godzilla” director Gareth Edwards and “Chronicle” director Josh Trank to helm the spin-offs from the main trilogy.
Disney/Lucasfilm plan to release a new “Star Wars” movie every year starting in December of 2015 beginning with “Episode VII”. The studio will then alternate between spin-offs and the new trilogy through 2020.
Disney is not wasting a lot of time or waiting until Episode VII is in the can before announcing who will be directing the next movie. This makes sense knowing the studio has announced a new film will be released every year starting with 2015. You want as much of your puzzle in place for each movie to avoid any possible delays. After all when you pay four billion dollars for one of the most popular not to mention iconic movie franchises of all time, you don’t mess around.