By now most people on every side of the ongoing Star Wars debate know who Kathleen Kennedy is. The head of Lucasfilm has been the target of much of the anger over the divisive Last Jedi and blamed for the failure of Solo: A Star Wars Story. Her direct boss, however, is Alan Horn, the Chairman of Disney under CEO Bob Iger. In a revealing new interview, he has opened up about past failures and the direct future of the Star Wars franchise after Episode IX. He also had some strong words about the final film in the Skywalker saga.
One of the most powerful men in Hollywood gave a major interview to the Hollywood Reporter. Sadly, he did not reveal anything about the release dates of the trailer and title of Star Wars 9 but he had exciting news about what fans can expect.
First, though, he addressed the negative reactions to Solo: “It’s always a challenge because — and I say this with love and respect for media — the thing about these big movies is they get a lot of attention, whether positive or negative.
“So when they don’t work, like Solo, the media says it’s a failure. I think it was a pretty good movie. It didn’t resonate as much as we’d hoped it would, but the press writes it up in a more negative way than I would.”
“These are very high-profile movies. If Aladdin, which I happen to think is a terrific film, doesn’t work somehow, that’s big news and much bigger news than if a movie somewhere else, like The Kid Who Would Be King [at Fox,] doesn’t work.”
He also revealed he gets weekly footage sent to him from the sets of Star Wars 9 and just visited the principal UK locations at Pinewood.
Asked if the movie would get the franchise back on track Horn said: “I just got back from the United Kingdom, which is not so united. (Laughs.) I went to the set, and was with JJ [Abrams], Kathy and the cast. I watched a couple of scenes being shot and then we all had dinner. I have not seen a cut of it yet, but I watch dailies every weekend and send JJ and Kathy a note every weekend. It’s a big deal, and it’s going to be terrific.”
He was also asked which movie or trilogy would follow next.
There has been endless speculation whether Rian Johnson’s much-touted spin-off trilogy might have been dropped after the Last Jedi backlash (it has not, according to Johnson himself). Fans excitement is currently focussed on the other trilogy from Game of Thrones creators, Benioff and Weiss.
Horn replied: “It’s all in discussion.”
Since the Marvel movie universe appears to be meticulously planned out years in advance, it sounds increasingly like Disney is focussing more on the projects and series like The Mandalorian for the new Disney + streaming platform.