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Rian Johnson will not be involved with Star Wars: Episode IX

10.20.2017

As the days to the release of STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI slowly trickle away, it's almost time to switch our undivided attention towards the next installment of the main saga, STAR WARS: EPISODE IX. When it was first announced that Rian Johnson would be writing and directing THE LAST JEDI, it was also expected that he would be writing the story treatment for EPISODE IX as well, which was to be directed by Colin Trevorrow (JURASSIC WORLD), but the conclusion to the STAR WARS sequel trilogy went through its share of setbacks, with multiple writers attempting to tackle the script. In September, Lucasfilm and Colin Trevorrow parted ways and it was announced that J.J. Abrams would return to direct as well as co-write the script with Chris Terrio.

While speaking with THR, Rian Johnson was asked whether or not he's had any discussions with J.J. Abrams about STAR WARS: EPISODE IX.

J.J. Abrams is doing a third movie. I’m not involved in it. They’ll be writing their own story but continuing on with what we did.

So beyond a simple passing of the baton, or returning in this case, it seems that Rian Johnson won't have much to do with EPISODE IX. It's all in your hands now, Mr. Abrams.

Typically, a STAR WARS film rarely picks up directly where the previous one left off, but when Rian Johnson saw "That very last image of The Force Awakens with Rey holding the light saber out to Luke," he knew that he needed to find out what would happen next. That meant that a return to Skellig Michael, the Irish island which stands in for Luke Skywalker's refuge on the planet of Ahch-To, was in order. A Jedi village was constructed, which was crafted as a "direct translation" of the real-life 6th century monastery on the island.

Those domes, that beehive kind of design of the huts is exactly what’s on Skellig. And we moved the geography of them around a little bit to what we needed. But the design was taken straight from Skellig. We wanted to fit in with what was on the islands.

Although Rian Johnson said it likely would have been "more economical" to place these scenes on a green-screen sound-stage instead of a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the director felt that it was "so worth it to do it the way we did it."

We got a feel, we got a vibe, we got a grounded kind of look that we never could have gotten on the green screen. I guess I should add that I was just trolloping up the stairs without a pack on my back. All of our great Irish crew, who acted as sherpas carting our equipment up the stairs, it was much more difficult for them. I don’t want to be cavalier about the stairs.

STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI will hit theaters on December 15, 2017.

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Source: THR

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