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Star Wars Episode 8 Release Date: J.J. Abrams To Introduce New Generation Stars; Harrison Ford Character To Be Written Off From Next Two Sequels

By Aurora Banks | July 25, 2014 04:47 AM EDT

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The long rumored Star Wars Episode 8 release date is finally confirmed with a new director on board.

According to sources of Variety, Disney and Lucasfilm will drop J.J. Abrams from directing episodes 8 and 9 and are now in talks with "Looper" director Rian Johnson to pen and helm the next two films.

The news was also confirmed by Deadline. The reliable movie site claims that Johnson will officially take over Abrams following Star Wars episode 7 and will be directing the sequel trilogy once the deal is finalized.

Contradictory to the claims by two sites, The Wrap reports that while Johnson is tapped to write the storyline for episode 9, he will not direct the third sequel, or at least not for now.

However, some of the original cast members like Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher are reportedly not involved in Star Wars episode 8 onwards. It has been previously reported that Star Wars 7 will pave way for the original cast members' send-off.

Their children are reportedly going to continue the saga thus, they will be dropped from the upcoming episodes.
Rian Johnson is popular from his sci-fi action movie "Looper" starring Bruce Willis and Joseph Gordon-Levitt. The film earned box office success bringing home $176 million worldwide. He also served as a director in several of AMC's hugely successful series "Breaking Bad" on its last season.

Ram Bergman will produce Star Wars episode 8 with Johnson, who's a respected indie director before shifting to mainstream. He wrote and directed Looper.

Aside from Star Wars episode 8 release date set two years after the seventh episode is released, Disney is already prepping up for the franchise spinoffs.

Star Wars spin-off movies are going to be directed by "Fantastic Four" director Josh Trank and "Godzilla's" Gareth Edwards or at least one of the planned spin-offs, which is slated for release on Dec. 16, 2016, announced by Disney and Lucasfilm in the official Star Wars website.

The spin-off, which has yet to be named - Boba Fett, Han Solo or Yoda - will offer "new stories beyond the core Saga."
What do you think Kpopstarz readers, will director Rian Johnson fit the bill or would you prefer J.J. Abrams to continue the saga? Feel free to comment below.

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