Steven Spielberg, J.J. Abrams, and Brad Bird Top Contenders for 'Star Wars: Episode VII'; Zack Snyder Not Interested

Michael Arndt's 50-page treatment is going out to the biggest directors in Hollywood.
Steven Speilberg, Brad Bird, and J.J. Abrams will get first crack at directing Star Wars: Episode VII
Steven Speilberg, Brad Bird, and J.J. Abrams will get first crack at directing Star Wars: Episode VII
Star Wars: Episode VII is the biggest news on the planet, bigger even than the recent reelection of President Barack Obama. So get used to seeing multiple stories about its production every day until 2015.

Yes, we just launched a story detailing the fact that Little Miss Sunshine, Toy Story 3 and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire writer Michael Arndt has penned a 50-page treatment that includes the characters Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and Princess Leia. Chewbacca, C3P0 and R2D2 too, where guessing.

But this one story was too huge for a single article. As previously mentioned, this treatment is soon going out to the biggest directors in Hollywood. The first to get a crack at it will be Steven Spielberg, followed by Brad Bird, and J.J. Abrams. Next, it will go to the previously mentioned contenders Matthew Vaughn and Colin Trevorrow, both personal favorites of franchise creator George Lucas.

One man not interested in the job? Man of Steel's Zack Snyder. The internet hasn't been kind to the director in regards to Star Wars: Episode VII, with many praying Disney doesn't look his way. He is a director who sometimes listens to critics and fans, and he certainly doesn't want the burden of dropping the ball on something so huge.

Here is the statement he released in regards to not taking on the project.

"I don't think I'd be interested in [directing it]. I'm a huge 'Star Wars' fanatic. I just think doing [episodes] seven, eight and nine is just a slippery slope. It's a whole other mythological experiment I'm excited to see, but it's a lot of effort."


Two names not yet mentioned are Neill Blomkamp, who made the very fun District 9, and Joe Cornish of Attack the Block fame. Both seem like worthy contenders, so maybe if all those mentioned above pass, we'll see Disney move onto them. Who do you want to see directing the next Star Wars movie? Do any of these names grab your interest?

Star Wars: Episode VII comes to theaters December 18th, 2015 and stars John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Adam Driver, Domhnall Gleeson, Lupita Nyong'o. The film is directed by J.J. Abrams.



Sources: Vulture, Hero Complex

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Comments (45)

  1. the Narrator

    Lol. I like ho Snyder said he didn't want to do episodes 7, 8, or 9, which leaves him open for this supposed "stand-alone" film. I wonder if he already knew what was up.

    2 years agoby @narratorFlag

  2. Jay.A.Ottley

    @Number1Wolverine Ideally but Nolan dropped out off producing Man Of Steel, but because ideally he did help produce it in a way, so Warner have kept his name on the project for promotional and selling purposes. He dropped off Man Of Steel during post production or the end of the production due to control issues.

    And well he dropped the next Batman saga due to the fact that Warner Brothers want to kick off the next Batman series with a Justice League film, which ideally in my opinion as DC fan will fail horrendously... Because after a JL film why would you give a damn about solo spin-offs for the other characters possibly aside from Batman & Superman.

    2 years agoby @jayaottleyFlag

  3. Jay.A.Ottley

    @Number1Wolverine Well according to Lucas who has written the treatment for the first installment of the new trilogy, its an entirely new story written by Lucas which is not influenced by any off the other sources, so unfortunately no Bane or Thrawn or KOTOR... They could possibly infused some of the story elements of The Force Unleashed with the antagonist being Vader's apprentice, now seeking to bring back the Empire.

    There are so many stories from the Star Wars Universe that can be composed to screen, which fan would die for and well ideally this may be a surprise but a Boba Fett movie is at the top of that list.

    Take Star Wars as being in the same concept as Warner Bros owning the rights to DC Comics, it's not being utilised to full effect in my honest opinion

    2 years agoby @jayaottleyFlag

  4. BERSERKER

    @jayaottley - I don't think that's true, I think he's going to help produce the next Batman film seeing as how he's helping them produce The Man Of Steel. Warner Brothers may be idiots, but their smart enough to keep him around to help with some of the DC universe. Now if we can only get him to help with Green Lantern, that would just make my day.

    2 years agoby @Number1WolverineFlag

  5. BERSERKER

    @jayaottley - Well Disney does seem to be on the up with the acquiring of Marvel and now Star Wars, my problem with them is there business practices that hopefully won't run into Marvel and Star Wars related entertainment.

    I agree, I see where directors are coming from by not wanting to direct Star Wars, seeing as how the fans turned on the man who made it.

    I personally want to see The Force Unleashed turned into a trilogy before anything else, but I wouldn't mind seeing Thrawn in Episode 7, which I think he's going to be the main antagonist in seeing as how Episode 7 will take place after Return Of The Jedi. Boba Fett is cool in all, but do you think he can really carry an entire film?

    Well supposedly Lucas always intending for Star Wars to be composed of nine flims, the events before everything happened which were the prequels, the original trilogy , and now the new trilogy, which will tell us the events of Luke restoring The Republic and balance to the galaxy. Lmao, I can't help but to laugh at (final twist is that Luke is the father...) because it's funny and sick at the same time :).

    2 years agoby @Number1WolverineFlag

  6. Jay.A.Ottley

    @Number1Wolverine And well on to the topic of Star Wars continuation, the fact that Disney now owns LucasFilms, doesn't really bother me that much. Disney seems to be on the up.

    I think a lot of directors are turning down the project because Star Wars is considered as a masterpiece in terms of film and is a great story compassed within a trilogy. And well no one wants to touch Lucas's baby project, and that's understandable from any director standpoint.

    I, myself want a new story from the Star Wars universe, bring me Thrawn, Bane, Knights Of The Old Republic or the fan's fav and desired, a Boba Fett spin-off.

    But in fairness, I couldn't care less what happened after Star Wars Episode VI... Also to be fair and honest where can you take it? Is by far the most interesting question that surrounds this new trilogy. The Republic and the Empire is gone, Darth Vader is history, the trilogy went full circle... What more is there to tell and who cares what happened 35 years or so after... what Han knocks up Leia and leaves her a single mum and Uncle Luke shall have his revenge and then the final twist is that Luke is the father...

    2 years agoby @jayaottleyFlag

  7. Jay.A.Ottley

    @Number1Wolverine Well ideally on the topic of Batman, as Nolan said "Batman, of all superheroes, has thrived on reinterpretation and almost is strengthened by it. So when the time is right, whenever someone does whatever the next iteration of the character is, they simply need to be true to whatever it is they want to see, to what they believe in, not worry too much about what everyone else is telling them it should be."

    ^ That is ideally how creatively controlled Nolan was on Batman, and well it's a shame and a pity that Warner nor DC are taking Nolan's advice for the next reinterpretation of the caped crusader.

    2 years agoby @jayaottleyFlag

  8. BERSERKER

    @jayaottley - Lmao, that Star Wars style line made me lol. But I agree, Nolan is a great story teller, even though I think somebody is going to make a better Batman trilogy I'll stay on the topic of Star Wars. You made an excellent point and example, which is why the fans including myself don't want Star Wars at Disney, we've heard it from top directors this week that are already declining to direct not even based on the fact of doing a Star Wars film, but more so to doing it with Disney.

    Now like you mention Nolan likes creative control which we all know from Batman isn't a bad thing, so I'd rather have a great strong director take full control, then an ok one who bends over to the studios will, because we've seen what happened' s when you have to many visions, Spiderman 3, Green Lantern, Iron Man 2.

    2 years agoby @Number1WolverineFlag

  9. BERSERKER

    @msc1bs - I was thinking the samething after just coming from seeing Cloud Atlas, but I think we can find better directors, seeing as how I think The Matrix was a fluke.

    2 years agoby @Number1WolverineFlag

  10. Msc1bs

    How about the Wachowskis?

    2 years agoby @msc1bsFlag

  11. Jay.A.Ottley

    Brad Bird is the next choice and in my opinion the best contender...

    Think of this sprawled on the teaser trailer to Episode VIII

    "From The Producer of Toy Story 3 & UP"
    &
    Director of Ratoutille, Incredibles... & Mission Impossible 4

    ^^^^ Now that's a big selling point

    2 years agoby @jayaottleyFlag

  12. Jay.A.Ottley

    @redcameraman Abrams turned it down already, he was the first contender alongside Nolan, in which both turned the project down internally.

    Abrams turned it down to focus on the next 2 installments to Star Trek, pretty much the same reasons @corey stated.

    Nolan turned down due to its not his style nor genre and that the franchise is not open to reinterpretation as Batman was.

    2 years agoby @jayaottleyFlag

  13. Jay.A.Ottley

    @Number1Wolverine Despite Nolan does get highly praised and is a great storyteller and after all did reinvent Batman. But Nolan loves creative control and so does Disney, so what you would have is a clash of horrendous proportions which would equal to the result of Spiderman 3... Star Wars style.

    2 years agoby @jayaottleyFlag

  14. Chrono2012

    Brad Bird!!! If he turns it down, then he needs to be drafted into doing it ;) Just kidding.

    2 years agoby @Chrono2012Flag

  15. Paulington

    @kirill2785 Yeah, sure. Then they can CGI Han, Luke, and Leia to look younger just like Jeff Bridges.

    2 years agoby @paulingtonFlag

  16. Kirill2785

    Joseph Kosinski! he made a great job with TRON: Legacy for Disney, and he's about to finish his new movie Oblivion and has enough time to to start working on Episode VII.

    2 years agoby @kirill2785Flag

  17. T. King (Red Camera Man)

    @corey: Hmmm... Good point.

    2 years agoby @redcameramanFlag

  18. Corey W.

    Next week: Michael Bay drops Transformers 4 for Stars Wars VII!

    I'd declare Attack of the Clones my favorite movie of all-time if that happened.

    2 years agoby @coreyFlag

  19. Corey W.

    It's pretty clear Bird is the top choice anyway. He has a great relationship with Disney already. Speilberg most likely won't get the director's chair. Maybe as a possible producer, but I'd doubt that too. BIRD! BIRD! BIRD!

    2 years agoby @coreyFlag

  20. Corey W.

    @redcameraman No way. If he did both Star Trek and Stars Wars film series at the same time he'd lose attention on one project and f*ck the other one up. He's a no-go. He should stick with Star Trek and do amazing stuff there in that universe.

    I say Bird. He's not really a big named director yet. Speilberg already has the glory. Let Bird step it up and make something out of himself with a huge project like Star Wars.

    2 years agoby @coreyFlag

  21. T. King (Red Camera Man)

    I choose J.J. Abrams (look at what he did to "Star Trek"). :-)

    2 years agoby @redcameramanFlag

  22. BERSERKER

    @justin-lomas - Finally somebody else besides me that wants to see The Force Unleashed turned into a movie, all I keep seeing is people talking about The Old Republic.

    Not that I don't like Spielberg, but we can get somebody new and fresh, plus he's about to direct Robopocalypse which I'm excited to see so let's keep that on track.

    JJ Abrams is focusing on Star Trek, so it would be very weird for him to go from Trek to Wars.

    Brad Bird is a good choice.

    Vaughn is a no, I really like the guy but him and Star Wars isn't mixing right for me.

    It's funny that Christopher Nolan gets praised like god on here but nobody mentions him to direct this, which I think he of all people would be perfect for.

    2 years agoby @Number1WolverineFlag

  23. Josh

    I love Spielberg, but I think he's wrong for this. It's almost too easy of a choice. After seeing how Brad Bird was able to revitalise the Mission Impossible series with a fresh, fun, and exciting movie like Ghost Protocol, I would love to see him take on Star Wars.

    2 years agoby @shuabertFlag

  24. moviegeek

    Brad Bird. That's my vote. I highly doubt Spielberg would do this. That's like dating your best friend's girl after they broke up.

    2 years agoby @moviegeekFlag

  25. skywise

    @jayaottley I couldn't agree more. Brad Bird would be great for this. He has experience with CGI and really brings out great performances from his actors (both voice over and live action).

    IMO Bird is still the most intruiging candidate.

    2 years agoby @skywiseFlag

  26. LuxoIII

    PLEASE Brad Bird! He was my top pick even before this was brought up.

    2 years agoby @brady1138Flag

  27. Jay.A.Ottley

    J.J Abrams has already turned it down.

    Spielberg seems more like a producer choice than a directorial choice, and plus his schedule is far too busy

    Brad Bird is preferably the most choice... Great with Disney, considering his Disney / Pixar reputation.. and well his transition to film went smooth as a baby's bottom with M.I 4

    2 years agoby @jayaottleyFlag

  28. K.Guy

    SPIELBERG!!!

    2 years agoby @kguyFlag

  29. SherlockHolmes2009

    Definetly like the way their going with directors

    2 years agoby @SherlockHolmes2009Flag

  30. Justin Lomas

    Too be fair I myself haven't seen jackson do anything original yet except bad taste years ago. but he does make great movies . Vaughn did an excellent job on x-men but who knows. Spielberg is too old now. We want someone who isn't 70 so they can devote the next 6 or 7 years to these films. J.J Abrams would do an awesome job :) But I'd love to see a story based off the force unleashed(Starkiller). That was a really great story! well..the first game anyways. The only think I don't wanna see is carrie fisher in this movie. She's old,fat, and she smokes.. maybe they can just say her character died er somethin lol

    2 years agoby @justin-lomasFlag