Back in 2017, there was huge excitement ahead of the release of The Last Jedi and Johnson was already proudly talking about his spin-off trilogy. He even revealed Disney had signed off on the idea with no script or characters in place. Episode 8 had a decidedly bumpy reception at the box office and split the fandom like never before. Tensions ran high and a backlash turned into a boycott, with fans accusing the director and Lucasfilm boss Kathleen Kennedy of disregarding and disrespecting the franchise’s core values and ideas.
Suddenly the future of Johnson’s trilogy seemed a lot less certain.
When Disney big boss Bob Iger made a declaration about the future of the Stra Wars franchise, Johnson’s name was notable by its absence.
He said: “We are just at the point where we’re gonna start making decisions about what comes next after JJ’s (Star Wars Episode 9). But I think we’re gonna be a little bit more careful about volume and timing.
“That doesn’t mean we’re not gonna make films. JJ [Abrams] is busy making [Episode] IX. We have creative entities, including [Game of Thrones creators David] Benioff and [D.B.] Weiss, who are developing sagas of their own, which we haven’t been specific about.”
This week, HBO boss Casey Bloys told TV LIne magazine why the Game of Thrones pair would not be immediately working on their next TV project, a controversial drama exploring an alternate America where slavery was never abolished.
He said “Dan and David are finishing up the final season [of Game of Thrones] and then they are going to go into the Star Wars universe. When they come out of that, I assume they will come back to us.”
“The delay has to do with [the fact] that they were offered three movies.”
Again this prompted rumours and reports that Johnson’s trilogy was now dead in the water.
Industry site SuperBroMovies published claims Johnson was “no longer attached to his own Star Wars trilogy.”
When upset fans asked Johnson to respond he tweeted: “No it isn’t true, I’m still working on the trilogy. With all due respect to the movie bros, who I’m sure are lovely kind bros with good fraternal intentions.”
It’s official then. Like or loathe what he did in The Last Jedi, the director is still very much a major part of the Star Wars future.