Not long ago, Safety Not Guaranteed director Colin Trevorrow was one of the names that popped up on the rumored list of directors that might take on Star Wars: Episode VII. He's not a well known name yet, but his last film, Safety Not Guaranteed, was pretty awesome. If you haven't seen it yet you should definitely check it out. I was really surprised when his name came up as a possibility, but I can see Disney taking a little advice from Marvel's playbook -- hiring little-known or unconventional directors to helm some of their projects.
It sounds like there might be some truth to the director being in the running because he really doesn't seem like he wants to talk about it, and he's not denying that he's in the running. He was confronted about the rumor while appearing on the podcast filmmixern, and he nervously responded with the following...
I have very little to say about it. [stammering] Certainly, no specifics about whats going on behind the scenes in the selection of that person [a director]. I think that I can speak as a Star Wars fan, which is important to me. Whoever does do this movie, I think, just needs to have a fundamental understanding of why its important to us. We come from a generation who grew up with this as children, to us its almost a belief system. Its harder for people who are older or who were already teenagers when the movie came out to understand how deeply it is our mythology. And there are a bunch of incredible directors who are up for this job… I think whoever gets it will have that fundamental understanding of why Star Wars matters so much to a billion people. Its just incredible. So that’s all I can say about that. I’m equally excited about it. … that’s all you’re gonna get!
Trevorrow was also interviewed at Stockholm International Film Festival by Moviezine, and was asked a ton of Star Wars questions. His answers tell us he could end up being a great choice.
1) Obviously, you are not in Hollywood preparing some big movie franchise. I have to ask: Are you directing one of the new "Star Wars" movies? It is not something that I can comment too much on. But I can definitely say, I am as much of a fan of Star Wars as everyone else for whom Star Wars was the most important thing in their life, when they were a kid. I'm deeply aware of how profoundly important it is, to billions of people. It really is a mythology and possibly even a belief system for a lot of people. I certainly can't comment on what my involvement may ever be, I can definitely say that I would absolutely love to direct a "Star Wars" film at some point in my life. That would be incredible, I'm not daunted by it. Even if I understand that any thinking director who cares about it as I do, as much as a lot of directors do, would be afraid of screwing it up. But I also think that it's a risk that a lot of directors would be willing to take, because they care about it so much.
2) You were just a newborn when A NEW HOPE was released. But do you remember watching the Star Wars movies for the first time? Yeah, the first one I saw in the theatre was EMPIRE. That was before home video, so movies would stay in the theatre for a long time. It was well after it came out. My key memory is that my mom, who took me, got furious with the owner for showing a trailer for "American Werewolf in London", which horrified me and all the other kids… But my first real, indelible Star Wars memory was when I was six, and my dad took me to the local premiere - I lived in Berkeley, California - and they showed RETURN OF THE JEDI on a Thursday night before it came out, and it was 50 dollars per person. We didn't have a lot of money and him spending a 100 bucks in 1983 was a big move. And they had a costume contest before it, and I went as a Jawa. I spoke the language and everything, and it was a pretty authentic Jawa. I won the costume contest and we won a 100 bucks (laughs). I'm sure my dad knew it was important to me, but then again I'm not really sure if he knew. I don't know if people his age can understand how that is going to stay with you for the rest of your life.
3) If you made a Star Wars movie, would you still have it grounded in reality as SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED? That is a very specific example of something that needs to feel consistent with the movies that came before it. That's a sequel to RETURN OF THE JEDI, that's a very specific world and a specific style of filmmaking and a presentation. I think that whoever does that movie, to depart too far, at least for these particular films… You know, they're gonna be making Star Wars films for the rest of our lives. Disney saw what Marvel has done, to be able to take an universe that seemed unlimited and really prove that it's unlimited… I think there is a difference between what we're gonna see in the next three movies, that have an enormous responsibility and are iconic and are completing a story that has existed in the pop culture fabric for decades… But after that, they are gonna be some really cool and exciting Star Wars universe movies. You're gonna see really bold, exciting directors, they'll do a crazy, underworld Star Wars movie and all kinds of stuff. And I'm excited to watch all those movies.
4) So you are saying that this new trilogy is only a beginning for something even bigger? Oh, I think that's just an undeniable fact. This trilogy is a beginning of a universe that my son, who is four now, will be allowed to explore in the cinema for his whole childhood. Thats what's exciting for me, that I get to take my kid to see a Star Wars movie, regardless of who's involved, he's gonna get to see it in 2015 when he is six years old. That is a sentimental and awesome fact for me.
From his response to these question I think it's safe to say that he's in the running and he wants the job. He's still an inexperienced filmmaker, after all, he's only made one movie. But, that doesn't mean we wouldn't do a kickass job directing a Star Wars film. Like Trevorrow says though, "Whoever does do this movie... just needs to have a fundamental understanding of why its important to us." There's a ton of directors in the running, and I think Disney and Lucasfilm will make the right choice.
Director Jon Favreau is at the top of my list, I would love to see him take on the job. You can read what he and J.J. Abrams had to say about Star Wars: Episode VII here. I can't wait to see who ends up directing this movie! Who do you think it will be? What do you think about Trevorrow's responses? If he ends up directing, I won't be disappointed.