A couple of weeks ago we found out that one of the fan favorites to direct Star Wars Episode VII, J.J. Abrams, was indeed approached about the job. Being a massive fan of the series, Abrams opted to see the movie in a theater instead of in the editing room.
Now comes word of another major talent that was approached for the new Star Wars, Guillermo del Toro. When it comes to large movie projects, del Toro is always a name you’ll hear mentioned in the mix. But because of this, he’s also one of the busiest people in the business and had to turn down being considered for the job.
Del Toro said:
“We got one phone call to my agent saying, ‘Is Guillermo interested?’ And basically I have so much stuff already of my own, and I’m pursuing stuff that I’m generating already.
It was very flattering. It was just a phone call, it didn’t go past that, it was very nice to be asked, but believe it or not, I’m busy enough.”
The director did however share who he wished would have been chosen for the job: Brad Bird. The Pixar vet, who directed The Incredibles, Ratatouille, and recently made the jump to live-action movies with Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol, was another name mentioned as a possible candidate. Unfortunately he’s already said he wouldn’t be doing it, with a movie titled 1952on the way with George Clooney starring, and his long-gestating earthquake drama 1906 also still in play.
This is all just growing pile of examples of how intimidating Star Wars Episode VII is to big name directors. Anyone in their right mind would love to play in that world, but they all know how passionate the fanbase is and just how risky it could be to give it their best try and fail. Careers could take some damage and it’s just not worth the effort for many of them.
There still are plenty of talented potential directors out there to be considered, but, to me anyway, it seems more and more likely that we’re going to see someone not as well known score the gig. Also risky, that could not only be career damaging for whomever is chosen, but potentially career killing if they take the shot and fail miserably. But, if they pull it off, they could be a made figure in Hollywood for a long, long time.
Of all of the directors who haven’t yet taken their name out of the running for Star Wars Episode VII, who are you pulling for?