Kennedy Has Spoken With Many Female Directors About ‘Star Wars’; Emily Carmichael One of Them?

Dec 5, 2016


We had a bad feeling about this quote being taken out of context.

It wasn’t too long ago that Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy did an interview, where her comments about “experience” for future Star Wars directors was seen as some sort of roadblock towards female directors.

Some saying that directors like Gareth Edwards and Colin Trevorrow were plucked out of the indie scene without that “experience”.

Well during a Rogue One press event at Skywalker Ranch in San Francisco, she clarified those original as reported by The Playlist, who were there first hand to gather her statements. Also, confirming that she has actually already spoken to plenty of female directors about making a film with them.

“It’s not true,” she said sounding rather vexed. “This gentleman [‘Rogue One’ director Gareth Edwards] did ‘Godzilla’ before we hired him to direct the movie,” Kennedy explained pointing to Edwards’ previous blockbuster experience.

“That quote was taken out of context,” she continued. “And I, as you can imagine, have every intention of giving someone an opportunity. So, if somebody actually moves through the process of making movies and wants to make a ‘Star Wars’ movie, and shows that they have actually stepped in to the role of that level? Of course, we’re going to consider a woman. That goes without saying.”

So to hear it from Kennedy, it’s not about gender, but all about skill and experience. Asked whether there were any filmmakers ready to step up to the “Star Wars” level, Kennedy avoided specific names. “There’s many and I’ve talked to most of them. There are many [worthy female filmmakers] out there.”

portrait-of-emily-carmichael-by-jen-maler-med-683x1024My impression is that they are actually setting up a couple of future prospects for success and to land a Star Wars gig. Don’t expect the hyper-secretive Lucasfilm to give up any names they are considering, but we have heard names of a couple potential candidates.

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One of the names is rising talent Emily Carmichael.

Emily is one of the writers on John Boyega’s Pacific Rim 2 and recently collaborated with Star Wars: Episode IX director Colin Trevorrow on her feature debut Powerhouse at Amblin Entertainment.

Amblin was founded by Steven Spielberg, Frank Marshall and of course Kathleen Kennedy.

However, from what we’ve heard they’re waiting until she’s had feature under her belt first. This might end-up being multiple large projects she has in the works like Lumberjanes or could be something new she’s up for like Marvel’s Captain Marvel.

Some other names include former Wonder Woman director Michelle MacLaren (Walking Dead, Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones) and Jessica JonesS.J. Clarkson, who had been previously linked.

screen-shot-2016-12-05-at-8-22-42-amI think we can safely say that director Ava DuVernay (Selma) once wrapping Disney’s A Wrinkle In Time will be a major person of interest to Lucasfilm.

We’ve previously stated an interest to see Ava tackle a Star Wars standalone and she gave J.J. Abrams some advice for the lightsaber duel in Force Awakens.

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Seeing her tackle Star Wars: Episode XI wouldn’t be hard to imagine if everything with Wrinkle goes well as they have plenty of time to get things in order director-wise.

What female directors would you like to see tackle the Star Wars universe?



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