This week we learned that Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss had exited their planned Star Wars trilogy. It’s almost become customary for various news outlets to do a deep dive into why there was such a falling out. Though many had their theories, new reports are coming out revealing exactly what happened between the two parties.
And while many were quick to cite Benioff and Weiss’ deal with Netflix as being the key issue, there seems to be more underneath it all, including some creative friction. More on the report below.
Variety says that Benioff and Weiss had “ambitious plans” to take the Star Wars universe to a place which existed apart from the Skywalker saga and explored the origins of the Jedi. This wasn’t too far off from the reports that Benioff and Weiss’ trilogy would be based on Knights of the Old Republic. While this sounded like it was going to be a very promising trilogy, there was some creative friction between the Lucasfilm execs and Weiss and Benioff. Things only got worse when the two signed their mega deal with Netflix.
However, it was rumored that Netflix was weary of waiting four years for Benioff and Weiss to complete their Star Wars project. According to Variety, Netflix saw how competitive things were getting with the arrival of other streaming services like Disney+, HBO Max, and Apple TV+ fast approaching, and wanted the duo to be working on films and original series for them instead of spending all of those precious years making Star Wars movies. Sources told THR that Netflix learned about their decision to depart the Star Wars universe just a few days before the news broke.
On the other side of the table, THR hints at Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy being unhappy with Benioff and Weiss signing Netflix after committing to taking on their Star Wars projects. That deal was struck just as the two were supposed to start work on their trilogy. Additionally, Kennedy was not confident that the Benioff and Weiss – who have a reputation of working on one project at a time – could divide their attention on multiple projects.
There may be another reason why the two parties split, as well. Sources tell THR that when the Game of Thrones creators were looking to sign an overall deal with one of the various media giants, Disney did not ultimately make the final cut. Another source says that the pair walked back on the project because of what they describe as “toxic fandom.” Apparently neither of them wanted to go through what Star Wars: The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson went through.
As Benioff and Weiss will move forward with their new series at Netflix, Kennedy will start to look for new filmmakers to helm the other projects that are brewing. One has to wonder whether or not they will be welcoming more people of color as the Star Wars universe continues to expand.
Of course, we will keep you posted as soon as more developments come in.
[Source: Variety | THR]