Kathleen Kennedy Addresses Why Colin Trevorrow Didn't Make Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

There was a time when Jurassic World filmmaker Colin Trevorrow was supposed to make the final film in the Skywalker Saga, directing and co-writing Star Wars: Episode IX. But Lucasfilm altered their plans before the release of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, removing Trevorrow from the project and replacing him with The Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams. Now, just weeks before the release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Lucasfilm boss Kathleen Kennedy has opened up about the need to pivot from Trevorrow, explaining why they decided to bring Abrams back into the fold.

Kennedy made it clear Trevorrow didn't do anything wrong, but that Lucasfilm had other plans for what they wanted to see in Episode IX.

"Well, I wouldn’t say it didn’t work. Colin was at a huge disadvantage not having been a part of Force Awakens and in part of those early conversations because we had a general sense of where the story was going," Kennedy explained in an interview with io9. "Like any development process, it was only in the development that we’re looking at a first draft and realizing that it was perhaps heading in a direction that many of us didn’t feel was really quite where we wanted it to go."

She added, "And we were on a schedule, as we often are with these movies, and had to make a tough decision as to whether or not we thought we could get there in the time or not. And as I said, Colin was at a disadvantage because he hadn’t been immersed in everything that we all had starting out with Episode VII."

In that regard, it makes sense why Lucasfilm decided to bring Abrams back for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker as he was a part of the initial story breakdown for the entire saga.

Trevorrow himself spoke out about his departure from the project during an interview with Empire conducted last year.


“I don't want to talk too much about it because I don't want to affect the way that fans get to see these films,” Trevorrow said. “When we were kids, these movies came to us from far away. They were a gift. And the more we talk about how they're made, the more it reveals that they're just movies. But they're not just movies, they're more than that. Beyond that, I got the opportunity to tell a story that is a celebration of everything I believe in, I got to tell it to George Lucas and I got to tell it to Luke Skywalker, and those are experiences I will cherish for the rest of my life.”

Fans will get to see how the saga ends when Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker premieres in theaters on Friday, December 20th.