Recently in an interview with the LA Times, Rian Johnson spoke about the initial work being done on his new trilogy. He revealed that he has begun brainstorming ideas with producer Ram Bergman as well as his thought process behind the films.
“It’s fun because it’s kind of thinking, ‘Okay, outside of the Skywalker story and outside of the recognizable iconography, what is this? What is “Star Wars?”‘ Or what do we need to retain from that, to pull forward for it to still be ‘Star Wars’ — and what can we leave behind?” Johnson explained. “They’re all the big questions that need to be thought of. And even the ones that we don’t know the answers to are things we need to figure out if ‘Star Wars’ is going to be vital and alive moving forward and not just be a waxworks. We’re going to have to figure out how to tell vital new stories.”
Johnson explains that Star Wars needs to keep innovating in order to move forward. The franchise cannot sustain itself long-term if it does not continually bring new and fresh ideas to the stories it tells. In recent years, Star Wars has relied heavily on nostalgia but Johnson appears to be leading the charge to move the franchise beyond the Skywalker Saga.
I’m curious to see the balance Johnson strikes between the new and familiar aspects of Star Wars in his trilogy. He appears to be distilling the franchise down to its core essence and presenting that in a new light. Hearing statements like this gets me excited as I couldn’t think of a better filmmaker to bring new stories, characters, and adventures to Star Wars.