Speaking of Star Wars Episode VII…


Michael Arndt.jpg

Following much speculation, it was announced late Friday that Michael Arndt — the screenwriter of Toy Story 3 and Little Miss Sunshine, for which he won the Best Original Screenplay Academy Award back in 2006 — will indeed be writing Star Wars: Episode VII (which I’m officially referring to as An Old Hope). Here’s the skinny from the official Star Wars blog:
As pre-production of Star Wars: Episode VII begins, Lucasfilm has confirmed that award-winning writer Michael Arndt will write the screenplay for the new Star Wars film. As revealed in the ongoing video series posted here on, Kathleen Kennedy and George Lucas have begun story conferences with Arndt.

It was originally reported last week that Arndt had a 40 to 50-page treatment for the story…not that anybody other than him, George Lucas and executive producer Kathleen Kennedy knows just what exactly will be going on in it. Sigh.

Meanwhile, /Film has insights from several candidates for the directing job, including Steven Spielberg, J.J. Abrams and, Gutter himself, Jon Favreau, who had this to say on the topic:

“I think both J.J. and I come from a generation of people who formed our
whole creative persona around what we experienced as kids from watching
those films, and I have had the good fortune of working with George
[Lucas] and around George, and whether it is doing a voice on Clone
Wars, or being at the Skywalker Ranch mixing Iron Man – so I have been
very happy and lucky to just experience the culture that Lucas has
created, both in my own life growing up as a kid and professional –
whether it was interviewing him at film festivals on stage, he is just a
really wonderful, talented gifted guy who has changed the business so
much, so I am just giddy, first and foremost as a fan, to see what
happens with it. I think there is a lot of question marks of how they
are going to do it, and who they are going to do it with, and what the
story is going to be about; but to say that I am not excited about it is
definitely an understatement. We’ll see.”

Personally, I’d be fine with either Favreau or Abrams (insert lens flare joke here) taking the reigns for Episode VII. But my ideal choice remains Joe Johnston due to his history with the franchise and proven track record as a director. So here’s what I want to know, how do you feel about Arndt handling writing duties and who would you like to see helm the film? Let me know in the comments.