In a brief statement from Disney, Star Wars Episode IX is currently without a director as filmmaker Colin Trevorrow has departed the project over, yep you guessed it, creative differences.
"Lucasfilm and Colin Trevorrow have mutually chosen to part ways on ?Star Wars: Episode IX. Colin has been a wonderful collaborator throughout the development process, but we have all come to the conclusion that our visions for the project differ. We wish Colin the best and will be sharing more information about the film soon."
According to Variety, Trevorrow and LucasFilm's Kathleen Kennedy clashed over the script that Trevorrow wrote with Derek Connolly. That dispute was highlighted with the recent announcement that Wonder and The Fades writer Jack Thorne had been hired to rework the script. Some sources are claiming that the poor response to Trevorrow's family drama The Book of Henry has also played a part in the decision. Grossing just $4.2 million worldwide, The Book of Henry made less than Trevorrow's low-budget debut Safety Not Guaranteed. Trevorrow booked the Star Wars gig off the back of the $1.6 billion success of Jurassic World; he even turned down directing the sequel owing to his Star Wars commitments.
If you include the Rogue One reshoots overseen by Tony Gilroy and not the original director Gareth Edwards, this latest shakeup is the fourth time that Disney has run into problems with its Star Wars directors. Josh Trank was allegedly fired from his unspecified spin-off (widely believed to be the Han Solo movie), and recently Phil Lord and Christopher Miller exited the Han Solo prequel with just a couple of weeks left of principal photography. Veteran filmmaker Ron Howard stepped in to complete the movie, and it remains unclear how much of Lord and Miller's work will make it to the final cut.
The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson is currently the frontrunner to replace Trevorrow, although at the time of writing no official announcement has been made.
Star Wars The Last Jedi is released in cinemas worldwide on December 15.