We all know that J.J. Abrams was given the keys to the Star Wars kingdom, but what we didn't know was that he might just be the rightful heir to it as well. In an interview with USA Today, which we first reported on yesterday, Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy had nothing but praise for the director of Star Wars Episode VII. For someone who has made a lot of family-friendly movies, Kennedy believes that Abrams is the right choice to direct Star Wars—because he's a lot like George Lucas and her own frequent filmmaking partner, Steven Spielberg.
- "J.J. has, in his own way, some of the same qualities that I always saw in Steven and George. What all of these men have is the ability to combine a real seriousness about what they do with a sense of humor. So there's a buoyancy, a lightness, a feeling of aspiration to their storytelling. Of hope."
Kennedy is right on target in her assessment of Star Wars. Even in the darkest moments of Star Wars—be it the slaughtering of the sand people, Darth Vader's immolation on Mustafar, or the kidnapping of Han Solo on Cloud City—the saga has always been about good triumphing over evil. Will Abrams continue to utilize darkness to tell Star Wars, or will it all be light-hearted? To hear Kennedy tell it:
- "I find that a lot of directors are attracted to the dark side. That's not Steven or George or J.J. They all can explore darkness, but they're not nihilistic."
This can be seen in Abrams' previous work as well. Star Trek and Star Trek Into Darkness both contained dark elements—the destruction of Vulcan in Star Trek, the attempted militarization of Starfleet and John Harrison's quest for vengeance in Into Darkness—but they are still hopeful and optimistic movies where good triumphs over hero.
To read the full interview with Kennedy, check out the piece on USA Today.
Is Abrams the right man to carry on the legacy of George Lucas? Let us know in the comments below!