Breaking Star Wars Part 3 – Ship sunk or righted?

Part 1 is here.
Part 2 is here.
In January of this year, the website Cosmic Book World published Disney’s SEC filing from 2017-09-30 to 2018-09-29. It revealed that LucasFilms had made a huge loss. Since then, a great deal has been going on behind the scenes at Disney and LucasFilms.
Kiri Hart was the Senior Vice President for Story at LucasFilms. Shortly after Cosmic Book News’s exposé, someone discovered that Hart’s details had been completely scrubbed from the LucasFilms website. Earlier this month, Hart reemerged as “creative advisor” for Rideback TV’s Incubator program. She will be “mentoring new talent”. What this means is that she was either fired from LucasFilms or quit before she could be fired. Nobody would willingly undergo such a huge demotion and cut in salary.
While I feel sorry for Hart, I don’t feel that sorry for her. Somebody with her level of experience should never have been appointed to such a crucial position. She was a post turtle. In addition, it was the Story Group she picked and led that ruined The Last Jedi and that has put the entire Star Wars franchise in jeopardy.
Kathleen Kennedy, the head of LucasFilms, has been keeping a very low profile for the last few months. All indications are that she has been isolated and ordered to keep her head down. She is 65 years old, and is likely to soon be gone from LucasFilms.
The best rumour I have heard so far is that the Expanded Universe is going to be reinstated. This is absolutely the right decision if true. Decanonising the EU was an utterly stupid move.
Principal photography on Episode IX ended recently. It began in August last year. That is almost 200 days of shooting! For a film in this day and age, that is more than twice the normal filming time.
Colin Trevorrow was originally selected to direct IX. He was replaced by J. J. Abrams, who also directed The Force Awakens. The rumour is that Abrams is “retconning the shit” (actual phrase) out of TLJ. That may explain the lengthy period of principal photography – a large number of reshoots would have been needed. Abrams, like he did for TFA, has also blocked the Story Group from having any input on IX.
One problem that could not have been foreseen was the sad death of Carrie Fisher from a drug overdose. Abrams intends to put her into IX with unused footage from TFA and TLJ. This might not work.
There have been no teaser trailers (as far as I know) for IX. Also, the title is still not revealed. One rumoured title is “Balance of the Force”. This sounds too bland and generic to be accurate.
Billy Dee Williams will be making an appearance in IX, reprising his role as Lando Calrissian from the OT.
There is a dubious (to me) rumour that Hayden Christensen will be appearing as Darth Vader. I would definitely take this with more than a pinch of salt.
One of the rumours circulating that is definitely false is that Han Solo will make a return. Harrison Ford long wanted to get rid of Han Solo. In fact, his precondition for appearing in TFA was that Han be killed off in it. He would not be willing to reprise Han for IX.
A few days ago, a rumour circulated that Rian Johnson’s Star Wars Trilogy was cancelled. It was greeted with excitement by the fandom, but Johnson denied the cancellation news.
I’m going to call it. Despite Johnson’s denial, his trilogy is not happening. The fans loathe what he did to Star Wars and would boycott any Star Wars film he made, and Disney knows it. Furthermore, a trilogy by former Game of Thrones writers David Benioff and D. B. Weiss has been announced. There is no way that Disney would allow work on two trilogies at the same time. Johnson’s trilogy has been sent to development hell to die.
All these rumours and information point to something concerning, however.
Disney and LucasFilms are panicking.
They know that TLJ disappointed fans, and that the attacks on fans infuriated them. They are now frantically trying to make it up to the fandom. And the problem with panic is that panicked people make bad decisions. As one of those fans, I know they have an uphill battle. We are now at the point of becoming indifferent and disengaged. I for one am in two minds about going to see IX.
I feel for Abrams. In a way, he has been handed a poisoned chalice. He has to fix what Rian Johnson broke. And I worry that competent though he is, he might not succeed. Indeed, it would be a tall ask even for a director of Steven Spielberg’s calibre.
Unfortunately, something has occurred that shows that LucasFilms hasn’t learnt.
A series of cartoon shorts called Star Wars – Galaxy of Adventures. These take scenes from the OT and “reimagine” them. What they do is inject Identity Politics into the OT, making Luke and Han bumbling fools and Leia a bitch. I have seen several Youtube videos doing side by side comparisons of SW – GOA and the OT.
There is a saying “if you make the same mistake twice, it isn’t a mistake but a choice”. LucasFilms ruined TLJ with Identity Politics and doubled down by attacking the fans. With SW – GOA they are now tripling down.
If it were up to me, here’s what I would do to save Star Wars.
I would decanonise TFA and TLJ and start afresh. As per the EU I would make Leia a Jedi married to Han Solo and with children. From that base, I would make a new Trilogy.
Because of Carrie Fisher’s passing, I would make the trilogy animated. I would go through the EU and through George Lucas’s Sequel Trilogy notes and come up with a story that allows us to say goodbye to Han, Luke and Leia and introduce new characters to take the Star Wars Universe forward, as per the original plan. For directors, I would hire people like Christopher Nolan and Robert Rodriguez who have proven themselves.
While I hope my scepticism for Episode IX is disproven, I fear it won’t be.


About autismjungle

I am a Software Test Analyst. Shortly before I turned 21 I was officially diagnosed, although I had long suspected I was autistic. Welcome to my blog
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