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Disney plays it safe: Why the return of Abrams is being protested

The return of J.J. Abrams into the Star Wars universe has been met with mixed reception from the Star Wars movie community.  Now there can be arguments on why this is a good and bad move on Disney’s part so lets take a look at them.

For why this is a good move J.J. Abrams is a god when it comes to making sci-fi movies.  He proved himself by making the seventh episode of the Star Wars movies, The Force Awakens, which is now the third-highest-grossing film of all time with a box office total of over 2 billion dollars. The film also received immense positive praise from both a critical and fan standpoint. The biggest gripe some critics and fans had with the film was that it took too much from Star Wars: A New Hope (that’s right I don’t call it Episode Four come at me).  Because of the similarities, many people don’t like the idea of Abrams coming back to direct Episode Nine.

Going along with this, fans are afraid that we are going to be getting a stylized revamp of Return of the Jedi.  One fan named Matt Vela has gone as far as to make a petition, on change.org to fire J.J. Abrams from directing Episode Nine. Mr. Vela gives his reason for making this petition on the site:

Image from Matt Vela’s change.org petition

This petition seems to have its heart in the right place wanting a new set of eyes to direct the final Star Wars trilogy film since Abrams has already had his turn.  However, until this petition gets an army of more signatures this will basically go unnoticed by Disney.  That could be due to the fact that Abrams made them 2.068 billion dollars, but that’s just a wild guess.

Image from change.org

Fans aren’t the only ones mad at Abrams. The film company Paramount Pictures is angry with Abrams because he’s basically ditching them to go film Episode Nine. The company’s CEO Jim Gianopulos was hoping for Abrams to come back to his “home” studio and give the company an Abram’s directed film and make them money. However, when Abrams dropped everything to go film Episode Nine, Paramount begrudgingly gave the go-ahead to let him film as to not cause any bad blood between the two when he returns.

Now while most of the core cast of the seventh film have kept silence on the matter, one cast member is excited to work with Abrams again. Domhnall Gleeson, or as he’s known in the Star Wars Universe: General Hux.  While on tour for the movie American Made, Gleeson gave his opinion on Abrams directing the ninth film.

In an interview with ComingSoon.net, Gleeson said, “Just as a fan I’m excited for JJ to do ‘IX’ because he did such a good job on ‘VII,’… So I’ll look forward to seeing it or being in it, depending on whichever it is. There you go, talk about hedging your bets!”

Image from Vulture

Now in my opinion of this whole thing I think this is a smart business decision for Disney, but it is also a fairly boring decision in my mind. Yes, Abrams made a good Star Wars film and he made Disney a literal ton of money, but he’s had his turn.  I would rather see another director take their shot at making a Star Wars film.  That’s why I’m hugely excited for Episode Eight, because Rian Johnson is directing it and he made Looper, which in my opinion is a great science fiction film.  So, seeing his vision for Star Wars makes me all giddy inside.

Overall, people are going to have a variety of opinions on this matter and I say let them, that’s the purpose of the Internet. However, until the actual film comes out and we, the audience, see what Abrams does with this trilogy’s final installment all we can do is speculate. All I can say is live long and prosper J.J. Abrams and best of luck.

Sources: change.org, ComingSoon.net, The Hollywood Reporter

Images: change.org, Vulture, Business Insider

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