Kathleen Kennedy has renewed her contract to remain the president of Lucasfilm for another three years, through 2021, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed. Kennedy became chief of Lucasfilm in 2012 after Disney purchased the company from George Lucas for $4 billion, and has overseen the Star Wars relaunch, with Disney’s four Star Wars films grossing about $4.5 billion at the worldwide box office.
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The only Star Wars movie currently in production is Star Wars: Episode IX, which began filming last month. The outlet notes that Episode IX will be the last of the “chapter” installments planned by Disney. Lucasfilm plans on expanding the Star Wars universe with new characters in the television medium. Projects include a live-action series by Jon Favreau and the animated Star Wars: The Clone Wars series, which will both air on Disney’s untitled streaming service in 2019. Star Wars Resistance, another animated series, will premiere next month on The Disney Channel.
Besides the Star Wars franchise, Lucasfilm is also focused on developing movies from David Benioff and D.B Weiss (Game of Thrones) and a new trilogy from Rian Johnson (Star Wars: The Last Jedi). The fifth installment of the Indiana Jones franchise, starring Harrison Ford and directed by Steven Spielberg, is also in the works and is expected to release on July 9. 2021.
Star Wars: Episode IX began filming at London’s Pinewood Studios on August 1, with J.J. Abrams (Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Trek) returning to direct the final installment of the Skywalker saga. Abrams co-wrote the screenplay with Chris Terrio (Argo, Justice League). Composer John Williams, who has scored every chapter in the Star Wars saga since 1977’s A New Hope, will return to a galaxy far, far away with Episode IX.
Returning cast members include Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Joonas Suotamo, and Billie Lourd. Joining the cast of Episode IX are Naomi Ackie (Doctor Who), Richard E. Grant (Gosford Park, Hudson Hawk), Dominic Monaghan (Lost, Lord of the Rings franchise), Matt Smith, (The Crown, Doctor Who) and Keri Russell (The Americans), who will be joined by veteran Star Wars actors Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, and Billy Dee Williams, who will reprise his role as Lando Calrissian.
The film will be produced by Kathleen Kennedy, J.J. Abrams, and Michelle Rejwan, and executive produced by Callum Greene and Jason McGatlin.
Star Wars: Episode IX is scheduled for release on December 20, 2019.
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