The stand-alone 2016 Star Wars film is slowly starting to take shape. With Gareth Edwards already on board to direct, The Hollywood Reporter has now confirmed that Chris Weitz is the new writer. Weitz will be replacing Gary Whitta, who left the project earlier this month after having completed his first draft.
Disney’s plan to flood the world with nothing but Star Wars for the next decade is looking to moving forward as well. On top of the three main trilogy films that will come out in 2015, 2017, and 2019, there will also be three independent stand-alone films in between them. These will take place in the same universe, but likely not have any direct ties to the numbered episodes and could take place at any time, even in the time frame of the original trilogy.
While nothing is confirmed – and with Whitta leaving the whole thing could be upended – there were some interesting rumors floating around months ago that this first spin-off coming in 2016 would be a heist movie, and involve a group of bounty hunters trying to steal the plans for the original Death Star. That film sounds like one more suited as a straight-laced film, but with Weitz’s deep history in big animation projects, it may change regardless.
Both a screenwriter and a director, Chris Weitz has made his mark on several big fantasy films and even received an Oscar nod for his adapted screenplay in 2002’s About a Boy. He is also credited on The Golden Compass for his adapted screenplay. His writing work dates all the way back to 1998’s criminally underrated Antz.
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