New Star Wars director provokes controversy among fans

Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, who will help the Star Wars franchise launch a new trilogy, will become the franchise’s first female director.

Obaid-Chinoy Star Wars

After several years without any Star Wars films, the Daisy Ridley/ Rey spin-off movie is set to bring the franchise back to the big screen, with director Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoyn at the helm.

Obaid-Chinoy – who will become the first female and person of color to direct a movie in the franchise with the upcoming trilogy launcher (set 15 years after The Rise of Skywalker) – recently expressed her excitement on being tied to Star Wars and the importance of having a female director. “I’m very thrilled about the project because I feel what we’re about to create is something very special…We’re in 2024 now, and it’s about time that we had a woman come forward to shape a story in a galaxy far, far away.” That’s no doubt a strong voice but her latter point might be worth discussion here.

It can be harmful to insist that this or that be included in any property, to check boxes simply because. Objectively, the right person should be the one hired. So, yes, while it’s great to get more diversity in the Star Wars universe, we have to consider if Obaid-Chinoy is the best person for the job. She has a relationship with Disney, having helmed two episodes of Ms. Marvel, but the rest of her resume – which leans heavily into non-fiction, including two Oscars in the documentary short category – doesn’t really feel like she’s up to the duty, at least according to some fans. Now, are Star Wars fans upset that her filmography doesn’t fit the style…or is there something else that might have to do with her gender? Would they care if it was a woman director with more of a pedigree, like Greta Gerwig or The Old Guard’s Gina Prince-Bythewood? Or, in the end, are they worried that the film will be more concerned with sending a message rather than simply being entertaining? These are all valid questions we perhaps need to shelve until the film comes out, but certainly Disney and Obaid-Chinoy are aware audiences just want to be entertained.

Do you think Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy is a good choice to direct a Star Wars movie? What do you think of her comments that it’s “about time” a woman helmed an entry? Give us your thoughts in the comments section below.

Source: Variety

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Mathew is an East Coast-based writer and film aficionado who has been working with JoBlo.com periodically since 2006. When he’s not writing, you can find him on Letterboxd or at a local brewery. If he had the time, he would host the most exhaustive The Wonder Years rewatch podcast in the universe.