Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm (and the announcement of new Star Wars films) stands as one of the biggest developments the entertainment world has seen in years. Almost instantly, the debate began on which filmmaker should be entrusted with re-launching the franchise, and while JJ Abrams was ultimately selected to direct Episode 7, one fan favorite name never had a chance at the job: Joss Whedon.
The Avengers writer/director, many fans argue, would have made a brilliant choice to make the film. After all, his work with Marvel (in addition to TV series like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly) prove that he knows a thing or two about working with ensemble casts – and dealing with supernatural forces. Plus, those projects also feature the balance of light-hearted adventure, wry humor and character-motivated story that has made Star Wars one of the most beloved film series of all-time.
Nevertheless, Whedon is hard at work overseeing Phase Two of Marvel’s big-screen efforts – culminating in The Avengers 2 in 2015 – as well as the upcoming S.H.I.E.L.D. TV series. However, one cannot help but wonder exactly how Whedon would have approached this new Star Wars trilogy, were he available to work on it.
Digital Spy recently got a chance to ask Whedon just that, and his answer may prove controversial to the massive Star Wars fanbase. Here’s what he said:
“I wouldn’t go back. I’d go forward. I would want to create characters that would resonate the way that [the original trilogy's characters] did. Not that I wouldn’t want to see them… I’d be excited to. But I also feel like I would want to explore a very different part of that universe.”
The prospect of leaving beloved characters like Luke Skywalker, Yoda and Boba Fett in the past may not be one that most fans will be to keen on exploring. In fact, recent news that Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford are close to joining the cast of Episode 7 directly contradicts Whedon’s philosophy. The director did say that, should characters like Han Solo play a role in the new film, recasting is not an option he would explore.
“[Recasting] I would never want to do. Some things may not be rebooted.”
Some Star Wars fans think that bringing Luke, Han and Leia into this new trilogy is a necessary step to bridge the gap from Return of the Jedi to Abrams’ film. However, after the Star Wars prequels (in many longtime fans’ eyes) failed to live up to the original trilogy, others would prefer to leave the Skywalker twins and the “scruffy-looking nerf herder” untarnished.
Regardless, it’s becoming more and more apparent that Disney/Lucasfilm is intent on mining the rich mythology of the existing films (as well as perhaps the Expanded Universe of the novels, etc.).
Given Whedon’s comments, would you be interested in seeing his vision of Star Wars (perhaps even in a future film)? Or are you glad that Episode 7 seems to going the nostalgic route?
Star Wars: Episode 7 is currently aiming for a 2015 release date.