Rian Johnson talks about getting ‘Star Wars’ directing gig

Lucasfilm and Disney still haven’t officially confirmed that Rian Johnson will be working on two Star Wars films that won’t be out for years, but they don’t have to. Johnson talked about landing the job, which includes directing the follow-up to Episode VII and writing Episode IX.

The Looper director appeared on the Filmspotting podcast’s 500th episode, which will not be posted until Friday. However, the Chicago Sun-Times was at the Music Box Theater, where Johnson was interviewed by the podcast hosts. He was not actually there, instead using Skype from San Francisco, where he is already plotting his Star Wars movies.

“I’m really excited about all the things I can’t tell you,” Johnson said at the taping on Saturday. Johnson, like every other director that Disney has hired to make the new Star Wars movies, has admitted that he was a big fan of the original films.

“I can only assume it was a clerical error, like in the movie Brazil. There’s a Brian Johnson out there who is really mad,” he joked when asked about getting the job.

He further described the job as “kind of like summer camp” and said he’s had his crew watch the Gregory Peck classic Twelve O’Clock High and the Russian film Letters Never Sent to get them prepared to make the movie. They watch different classics every night to prepare.

Johnson did surprise some in the crowd when he said, “There was something really beautiful about the prequels.” Obviously, the majority opinion differs with that, but we can only assume he has to say things like that because the prequels are still part of the Star Wars cannon.

Johnson was hired to work on Episode VIII and Episode IX in June. He will only direct VIII, but is still going to write IX. J.J. Abrams is currently working on Episode VII, which will be out in December 2015.

image courtesy of Walter McBride/INFphoto.com

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