Various sources, including TheWrap (who had it first), are reporting that J.J Abrams (“Star Trek”) is in final talks to helm the next “Star Wars” movie.
Abrams had previously said he had rejected the offer to helm “Star Wars Episode VII”, the first of three new installments in the long-running science-fiction series, but seems he was either a) lying b) about to be lured by way of some big bucks c) covering his ass so Paramount, who he does the “Star Trek” movies with, didn’t find out. Not then, anyway. And that way.
Abrams and Ben Affleck were apparently the two contenders for the job .
Michael Arndt is writing the first installment in the new trilogy, due 2015.
Here’s what TheWrap has :
Lucasfilm Chief Kathleen Kennedy has been courting Abrams, one of the most successful directors and producers in Hollywood — and a man beloved by fanboys. He runs one of the industry’s top production companies, Bad Robot, and created or co-created television franchises like “Lost,” “Fringe” and “Alias.” He has also directed film spectacles “Mission: Impossible III,” “Star Trek” and “Super 8.”
The lure of the Jedi was too strong, and it will no doubt complicate his relationship with Paramount, where Bad Robot is a top supplier. Abrams has been feverishly working on “Star Trek Into Darkness,” his second Star Trek film since he rebooted the franchise in 2009. “Into Darkness,” still in post-production, opens May 18.
Though he has several producing jobs in front of him, Abrams had been uncommitted as a director. He will have to jump right into “Star Wars,” which Disney has slated for a 2015 release. “Little Miss Sunshine” screenwriter Michael Arndt is penning the script.
Reached by TheWrap, Lynne Hale, spokeswoman for Lucasfilm, declined to comment immediately. Neither CAA, which represents Abrams, nor Bad Robot immediately responded to requests for comment.