J.J. Abrams directing ‘Star Wars’: Many voices cry out in reaction

Jan. 24, 2013 | 8:53 p.m.
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J.J. Abrams, who has made a name for himself writing, directing and producing such hits as "Lost" and "Star Trek," was tapped in January to direct "Star Wars: Episode VII." (Tracey Nearmy / European Pressphoto Agency)

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Abrams made his first foray into television in 1998, co-creating the coming-of-age drama "Felicity," which starred Keri Russell as the title character. The show won a Golden Globe and an Emmy. (The WB)

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Abrams created the Jennifer Garner-starring spy thriller series "Alias," which won four Emmys and a Golden Globe. (Norman Jean Roy / ABC)

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J.J. Abrams on the set of "Mission: Impossible III," the first feature film he directed. The film earned nearly $400 million at the worldwide box office. (Paramount Pictures)

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Director J.J. Abrams and star Tom Cruise on the set of "Mission: Impossible III." (Paramount Pictures)

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Director J.J. Abrams and star Tom Cruise pose atop Shanghai's historic Bund 18 building after wrapping up filming in China for "Mission: Impossible III" on Nov. 30, 2005. (Associated Press)

lost J.J. Abrams directing Star Wars: Many voices cry out in reaction

Abrams co-created "Lost" with Jeffrey Lieber and Damon Lindelof. The suspense-filled show followed a group of people after their plane crashed on an island. The massively popular series became a cultural touchstone, with millions of viewers tuning in for twist after twist. (ABC)

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J.J. Abrams is photographed in Los Angeles in April 2006. (Bob Chamberlin / Los Angeles Times

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J.J. Abrams, second from left, poses with the cast members from "Fringe," a sci-fi television series he co-created with Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci. (Rich Lam / Getty Images)

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J.J. Abrams reveals his first casting for his 2009 reboot of "Star Trek" during a 2007 Comic-Con panel in San Diego. (Spencer Weiner / Los Angeles Times)

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A scene from Abrams' 2009 film "Star Trek," which raked in more than $385 million worldwide. (Paramount Pictures)

spielberg J.J. Abrams directing Star Wars: Many voices cry out in reaction

Steven Spielberg, left, co-produced the 2011 film "Super 8," which J.J. Abrams wrote and directed. The pair are shown here at a 2009 dinner honoring Spielberg in Beverly Hills. (Michael Kovac / WireImage)

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J.J. Abrams and Steven Spielberg on the set of "Super 8." (Paramount Pictures)

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Director J.J. Abrams and actor Kyle Chandler on the set of "Super 8." (Paramount Pictures)

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Young actors Joel Courtney and Riley Griffiths discuss a scene with director J.J. Abrams on the set of "Super 8." (Paramount Pictures)

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J.J. Abrams, left, and Eric Kripke executive produce the post-apocalyptic adventure series "Revolution." The pair are photographed here at Abrams' company Bad Robot in Santa Monica on Aug. 20, 2012. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

st2 press J.J. Abrams directing Star Wars: Many voices cry out in reaction

Abrams, second from left, shares the stage with "Star Trek Into Darkness" actor Benedict Cumberbatch, star Chris Pine and producer Bryan Burk during a December 2012 press conference for the sequel to their 2009 blockbuster. (Koji Sasahara / Associated Press)

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J.J. Abrams and his wife Katie McGrath are co-chairs of the Children's Defense Fund of California. They're photographed here in December 2012. (Mark Davis / Getty Images)

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J.J. Abrams is photographed in Beverly Hills in June 2011. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

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J.J. Abrams is photographed in Beverly Hills in June 2011. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

Reaction to Thursday’s news that “Star Trek Into Darkness” filmmaker J.J. Abrams will be directing the next “Star Wars” film has been decidedly mixed.

The seventh installment in the epic franchise is only scheduled to reach theaters in 2015, but speculation about who would helm “Episode VII” has been circulating since October, when the Walt Disney Co. went public with its plans to acquire Lucasfilm for $4.05 billion and announced the upcoming “Star Wars” trilogy.

When “Lost” creator and “Star Trek” director Abrams was announced Thursday, “Star Wars” fans took to (where else?) the Internet to voice their approval or displeasure.

Some fans congratulated Abrams on his Facebook page, while others begged him not to drop the ball. A petition titled “Disney: Stop J.J. Abrams from directing the next Star Wars film” appeared on Change.org. And of course, the Twittersphere exploded with wildly divergent but overly enthusiastic responses, with some people claiming that Abrams’ involvement will spell the destruction of their beloved franchise, and others saying the decision heralds a new and glorious era in the universe of Sith, Jedi and blaster-toting princesses.

Here’s a look at some of the more memorable reactions on Twitter.




— Noelene Clark


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‘Star Wars’: Michael Arndt signed to pen Episode VII

New ‘Star Wars’: Lucas won’t write or direct

Abrams: ‘Star Trek’ still in shadow of Lucas

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38 Responses to J.J. Abrams directing ‘Star Wars’: Many voices cry out in reaction

  1. Fern says:

    I think JJ will bring a breath of fresh air to SW VII…if the script is well written.

    • @tlsmith1963 says:

      JJ did a great Star Trek film. I had wanted Trek to have a rest for awhile, but Abrams proved that it still had life to it yet. I think he will do just fine.

      • James Picard says:

        No, he did a passable summer action flick that happened to carry the name Star Trek. If anyone honestly believes that movie was true to Gene Roddenberry's original vision, then I have a DVD of Star Trek: Phase II for sale on eBay. Still, maybe I'm NOT the only one who saw that ST was going the Star Wars route, and it could be the reason they picked him. But I'm not holding my breath. When I first heard about this movie, I was cautiously optimistic. Now, I'm just waiting to see what goes wrong.

  2. jose seijo says:

    after destroying mi3, and ruining startrek for ever, someone thought that this awful, over rated film maker can improve starwars? the next startrek film looks so awful, along with the no talent cast, that the final frontier has been done. say by to starwars, george. it is now a rubble of garbage.

    • Porkins says:

      I'm with you, bro. Anyone who doubts should re-watch Armageddon… Worst film ever. I'm guessing nepotism was involved in getting Abrams a director title, and nepotism is what's allowed him to keep it.

    • Darkwølfe says:

      You are clearly clueless. Nolan could not be a more inappropriate director for a SW movie – completely different tones. But if you knew anything, you'd know that…

    • Cody says:

      What do you base your disdain on??? Lets see… Abrams name is tied to highly successful movies. That were not only successful, money wise, but with the critics and average movie goers. Yeah, you are the brutally small minority.

      • Paul says:

        Can you say Cloverfield? A success? He has RUINED Trek forever. HE did nto look at the canon, did not do his research on small simple things like each ship having its OWN insignia on its tunic. Like promoting a cadet to full captain? Hell that doesn't even work in our world. Like saying Kirk was born in space. Uh duh, he was born in Riverside, Iowa, on Earth. So many small things that anyone who knows would see. But no we get lens flares galore and a person who admitted he did not watch it nor had any intention on doing so. Then you have the second one. Seriously, Khan was INDIAN, from the FAR EAST yet he has a white male playing the part with a British accent. And don't bring the timeline in on this because the Botony Bay was launched in 1996… WAY BEFORE he messed up the timeline….Small things like that. he ruined Trek and he will ruin SW…

  3. jose seijo says:

    if they wanted to change it, they should of given it to nolan. if they wanted hype, a new negative course, quentine tarentino. not looking to 2015.

  4. Bugsy says:

    JJ Abrams to direct SW? How could it possibly be worse than the last 5?

  5. SkipBon says:

    JJ Abrams is the guy who brought us the formulaic and predictable "Super 8," where almost the entire film was a lazy re-assemblage of film cliches and plot devices from Spielberg's and Abrams' prior works. Prediction: Abrams will give the next Star Wars film the same treatment, reassembling Star Wars and sci-fi cliches into another ho-hum film whose sole purpose will be to allow Disney to start squeezing enough dollars from the Star Wars fandom to justify to Wall Street that their $4B purchase of Lucasfilm was the right move.

  6. @HelenIsPeel says:

    Please avoid lens flaring the light sabers… Please…

  7. riles says:

    As long as Harrison Ford is O.K. with it; i'll be good with it. :)

  8. timboslice says:

    scifi nerds are going to revolt against Lucas and Disney. RIP Trek/Wars

  9. James says:

    Let JJ do his thing – it probably wont suck, but it wont be much better than anything Lucas produced in recent years. While he's having fun with it though, why not let Christopher Nolan remake the whole series into a darker more moody collection of movies. (Are you listening DISNEY?)

  10. sanjuro says:

    Yes, it's a mistake. I also think it's a mistake to have Michael Arndt write the script from a George Lucas story. Arndt's sudden fame comes from two movies and one (Toy Story 3) owes certainly more to the people at Pixar than to him. Somehow I don't see this working; we're going to get the same tepidness that was in the prequel.

    This also shows the narrow-mindedness of the studios. They can't think of any director to direct a sci-fi epic other than JJ Abrams, and this obviously because of Star Trek. But using the same director to work on the two franchises will inevitably bring an unwanted creative connection between the two. These are two very different universes that should not be handled by the same person.

    I did enjoy the Star Trek reboot but like someone else pointed out, Super 8 on the other hand was a very mediocre movie. JJ Abrams isn't such an outstanding director that he would be the obvious choice for a Star Wars movie. Better names that come to mind: Edgar Wright (he knows how to create the chemistry in an ensemble cast and Star Wars needs that), David Fincher (who hasn't had a brilliant script in a long time), Guillermo Del Toro (who has the creative vision), Brad Bird (so does he, I believe), Tom Hooper (I'm quite sure he could do it), Matthew Vaughn (bah, why not), even Steven Spielberg or Peter Jackson would be better (I also have a wet dream of a Star Wars trilogy written and directed by the Coen brothers).

    • that guy says:

      besides del toro, none of these directors have handled movies this large/expensive/technically driven.

      help us jj abrams…. you're our only hope.

  11. John the Lawyer says:

    Hey, Abrams, congrats. Remember that in the Star Wars universe they’ve invented COATED lenses. Good luck

  12. Dave B says:

    Wow, people, lighten up. I am actually looking forward to this next episode, and think the choice of Abrams is pretty cool.

  13. Mel Schmidt says:

    Oh how cool is this! My nephews company who does the Special Effects through Branit VFX (sp) has worked with Bad Robot. Oh did you all get your "Bad Robot" Tee shirts yet? They are pretty sweet. The new Star Trek movie was outstanding. Looking forward to more sequels.
    Will pretty interesting to see what he does with Star Wars. Maybe add some Klingons in the mix?

  14. legba says:

    ga ga gah gaaaaaah

    polish the bishopppe

  15. DARTH ZOIDBERG says:

    I am so happy, the only thing that could realy make my day even better would be to hear that futurama has been renewed …..

  16. Dr Theopolis says:

    I want JJ to match the same heart-racing, pulse-pounding excitement of that first Alias season with the Star Wars universe. The best of A New Hope in tone and lightness with the thrill and darkness of Empire.

  17. MikeAWBD says:

    I think Abrahms is a great choice, I can't speak much for the writer. I think they could have done better in that area. For those who don't like the choice, at least it wasn't Michael Bay. That was my biggest fear. He's probably the only person worse than Lucas lol.

    • William Snider Films says:

      a better writer than Michael Arndt? Like who? Who on earth is a better screenwriter than Michael Arndt for this kind of project? Maybe Edgar Wright, or Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss. Idk, I think he's a pretty good match.

  18. Digialpha says:

    I have my doubts about JJ Abrams. Will he follow the script already written, or will he ignore it and rewrite the movie to satisfy himself? I thought the last Star Trek was entertaining but I didn't like how he change the established Star Trek universe and the attempt at campy humor. JJ PLEASE do not bring back Jar Jar or some reincarnated version of him. Save the campy slap stick humor for Star Trek. Do not disappoint Star Wars fans; we are not Star Trek fans. We have a higher standard.

  19. Charles Beyer says:

    The visual aspect of Star Wara was so appealing because Lucas wasn’t a stellar writer of prose. He compensated with great affect visually. If Abraham’s can infuse acting back into the franchise? Woo, hoo!!!

  20. cbk16 says:

    JJ seems like a good choice, he comes across as the Spielberg of this generation. The character interaction is what made the first three Star Wars so entertaining, Abams has shown he can do this from his other works.

  21. destruct26 says:

    When all of this is said and done, it’ll be just like when Star Trek was rebooted, there will be the typical quartered response: 1) Die-hard fans will accept it, and move on. 2) Die-hard fans will hate it and bitch and moan and defend the original ideas and its prime creator. 3) People who hated the prior franchise find this fresh and exciting, possibly embellishing them to revisit and like the former franchise. 4) People who know of the franchise, but weren’t, at any time in thier life ever interested in the franchise, and NEVER, EVER will be. Some peeps just don’t dig on sci-fly. This will inevitably form a union from those who accepted BOTH reboots of thier beloved franchises. I am on this group, and we are merry. Come on over, we’ve got doughnuts and beer. That is, of course…..until the HATERS of both franchise reboots come together to form a plan……This setting sounds familiar, right? Well guess what people. You’ve just read the plot for Spaceballs 2. You’re welcome.

  22. NewDarthHater says:

    I will be boycotting this movie. I was 7 when the orginal came out and I grew up a Star Wars kid and remained an adoring fan my entire life…. Star Wars is dead to me now, just like Star Trek. Thanks for nothing JarJar Abrams.

    Of course what do you expect with Disney? I imagine you'll all be luck if you don't see Mickey Mouse in a cantina somewhere when this trash comes out.

  23. apet says:

    I've seen the story. A disturbance in the force alters the timeline so the jedi knights were never exterminated, and darth rebuilds the sith in another galaxy.

  24. Katie says:

    So how many solar flares will there be? Any guesses?

  25. Aaron Walker says:

    J.J. Will mend the bridges of the Star Wars vs Star Trek camp! Taking a little dramatic licence, J.J. could send the gallant crew of the new enterprise to a galaxy far far away to become entangled in the politics of the new republic, and wind up assisting the jedi. as well as helping the new republic fight the imperial remnant! Both camps will live long and prosper, and be one with force!!!!

  26. J.M. Schneider says:

    Hmm… All J.J. needs do now is hijack Serenity and produce a ST/SW/Firefly fusion film. Box office extravaganza, breaking all opening weekend records forever!

  27. Ron M says:

    Star Wars/Star Trek? Gaaah!!! Enough already. Who cares who makes this dreck. It is all crap made for little children. When is Hollywood going to hire real directors and real writers and get back to making movies with actual story lines that adults can enjoy. Let J.J. Jiggy-cam make his kids movies. I don't care. They all suck anyway. Honestly people. Teddy bears and spaceships? Really?

  28. ajota says:

    Hmm, just watched Into Darkness…twice, because I thought I missed something. But its just the same predictable, whiny victims played by the same recycled actors as with most his works. Maybe this new Star Wars project he can branch out a little from the pedestrian spin.

  29. George Lucuas says:

    Jar Jar Abrams will destroy Star Wars just like he did with Star Trek! RUINED!
    Someone needs to take this guy out before he destroys any other franchises. We're sick of Abram's action packed mediocrity, and flashy crap! stick to the original stories and continuity!!!!!

    JJ, people don't want their childhood memories and stories screwed with…. So, QUIT screwing the fans over!

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