Star Wars: Episode IX is the upcoming ninth film in the Star Wars saga and the final film in the sequel trilogy, to be produced under the Disney-Lucasfilm brand. The film is slated to be directed by Colin Trevorrow and produced by Kathleen Kennedy and J.J. Abrams. It is scheduled for release on May 24, 2019.
- "We want to channel the invention and just the raw creativity and the boldness that George [Lucas] brought to these films and not being afraid that we're going to embarrass ourselves by doing something that might be crazy. When George Lucas made Star Wars, a lot of people thought it was crazy. When you try to pitch what that movie's about – if you've never heard of Star Wars before, you say, 'Here's a character. His father's part robot, but he can also do magic. And there's a guy who can fly in a spaceship. He's got a dog for a friend!' – it sounds insane. But it's the greatest story ever told. I just want to embrace that kind of invention and creativity that he brought to it."
- ―Colin Trevorrow, in a speech at Lucasfilm
Unofficial reports claimed in November 2012 that Lawrence Kasdan—who originally wrote the screenplays for both Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back and Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi—and Simon Kinberg would divide writing responsibilities for Star Wars: Episodes VIII and IX, and both would co-produce all three films of the upcoming sequel trilogy, alongside Kathleen Kennedy. However, in February 2013, Disney confirmed that Kasdan and Kinberg were working on standalone films, not main episodes. It was also believed that Rian Johnson—who had signed on to direct Episode VIII—would write the treatment for Episode IX, though this was later denied by Johnson. In August 2015, Colin Trevorrow was officially announced as director for Episode IX. Johnson and Trevorrow worked closely to ensure continuity between their respective films. Trevorrow has said that he will shoot on 65 mm film, and that he would like to capture some footage in actual outer space. Some sequences will also be filmed with IMAX cameras. Principal photography is set to begin in January 2018.
With the passing of Carrie Fisher on December 27, 2016, it is not yet known how Fisher's passing will affect the role of General Leia Organa in Star Wars: Episode IX or any future Star Wars films. Trevorrow reportedly met with Kennedy in January 2017 to discuss possible solutions. Lucasfilm has dispelled rumors that it would digitally recreate Fisher in future films. Fisher's brother Todd claimed he and Billie Lourd had granted Lucasfilm rights to use recent footage of her. However, Kennedy soon confirmed that Fisher will not be in the film, and that the team had "pretty much started over" on it in light of her passing. Jack Thorne was hired to rewrite the initial script.
During a concert with the Young Musician's Foundation Debut Orchestra on February 9, 2013, composer John Williams said he was hoping to get the chance to write the musical scores for the sequel trilogy films. It was implied in Star Wars Insider 144 that he would score the entire "new Star Wars trilogy," but Lucasfilm clarified that he has only been confirmed for Episode VII. Williams was later confirmed for Episode VIII as well, but has not yet been confirmed for Episode IX.
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- "An Exclusive Interview with George Lucas"—Star Wars Insider 26
- "Launch Pad"—Star Wars Insider 151
- "Launch Pad"—Star Wars Insider 160