Correction: Article edited to correct the David Fincher and ILM fact and to acknowledge that Fincher worked on one sci-fi film.
Let’s me be honest, Star Wars is one of the greatest sci-fi franchises ever created (sorry Trekkies). I’m not the only one who feels this way too as many people in the entertainment industry would say that Star Wars is one of their inspirations. So one would think that every director would be clearing their schedule for a chance to direct Star Wars: Episode VII. Not so fast, my young padawan. It seems that a majority of big name directors have declined the opportunity to direct Episode VII. Big names such as Steven Spielberg, Brad Bird, and Ben Affleck have all declined, although all of them seem very optimistic and eager to watch a new Star Wars trilogy in the post-Lucas era.
While the leading candidate is still Matthew Vaughn, other names have been tossed around as at least willing to sit in the director’s chair for the upcoming trilogy. One of the names that we’re mentioned was Iron Man’s Jon Favreau. Deadline is reporting that Jon Favreau is “panting after” the job. While Favreau is a logical choice for his work on Iron Man, one might pause on that after his work on Cowboys and Aliens. He has made it very clear while speaking with EW that he has some ideas on what stories can be told in the next trilogy. Let’s not forget that the man is a fan (he has an Iron Man/R2-D2 mashup as his Twitter avatar) and his work on Iron Man has been amazing to say the least. As an Iron Man fan though, he’s still not my top pick as Matthew Vaughn currently still holds that top spot for me. This next guy would be my #3 choice (right behind J.J. Abrams).
That’s right David Fincher, director of such not-so-sci-fi films such as Se7en and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Why is a director with one sci-fi film under his belt even being considered for Star Wars? Well, today I learned that Fincher has some small ties with LucasFilm. When Fincher was a young man, he worked with the folks at ILM on such films as Return of the Jedi and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. While that may not necessarily a lot to go on, he is mildly interested. Getting a director of Fincher’s caliber is either a good or a very bad thing. I don’t think I need to remind people just how bad Green Lantern was. That was a god-awful movie, which was directed by Martin Campbell. A director whose action films are mostly known for its grittiness and realism (ie. GoldenEye, Casino Royale). Warner Bros. then hired him for a superhero sci-fi movie called Green Lantern and the rest is history. I’m not putting Campbell and Fincher in the same boat by any means, but one must be wary of the pitfalls of hiring a director that’s out of his usual genre. The exciting thing with Fincher though is that he can create a film that is both visually mind-blowing but also emotionally honest. To me he would be the ideal candidate for Episode VIII, which typically is the darker movie in a trilogy.
It’s going to be an interesting couple of months to see who becomes director and who gets cast. Stay tuned. Star Wars: Episode VII is currently being written by Academy Award winning (Little Miss Sunshine) writer Michael Arndt.