All things that "strike a chord" in me.
Knowing that I will be asked many times about my feelings about this announcement, I thought I’d just put it here for the general public to find. For those who care, here are my thoughts.
When Disney first bought Lucasfilm and announced they would be making more Star Wars films, I was cautiously optimistic. Being a die hard Star Wars geek from way back in the day, I will always be excited about more stories from that galaxy far, far away. My only real concern is whether the new films will go back to the innovative storytelling of the original trilogy, or whether they apply the “how many computer effects can we cram into this movie” theory of filmmaking.
J.J. Abrams brings, I think, the best of both worlds to the table. Abrams is definitely a proven storyteller, which should be a pre-requisite for anyone helming a Star Wars movie. I was blown away by Super 8. His weaving of a sweet coming of age story with an alien invasion was masterfully done.
Abrams also know his way around the blockbuster movie, which any Star Wars theatrical release certainly will be. His reboot of Star Trek had the potential to be disastrous, but he pulled it off admirably. Sure, there were some Trek purists out there who had issues with it, but that’s going to happen with any beloved franchise, and it will happen with this one as well.
Of all the directors that could have taken on this project, I had my own short list of people I’d like to see take it on. Mr. Abrams was certainly high on the list. Spielberg would have been great, if only for his knowledge of the universe and his previous collaborations with Lucas. Joss Whedon would have also been a great choice, and I still hold out hope that he’ll take on a later Star Wars film after finishing Avengers 2.
That being said, I have but two pieces of advice for Mr. Abrams. First, ease up on the lens flares. I get that they’re kind of a trademark of yours, but keep it to a minimum. You’re not Michael Bay (for which Star Wars fans the world over are grateful). Second, for whatever comic relief you need to throw in, do away with Jar Jar, and stay away from the kind of awful C3PO dialogue from the big battle scene in Attack Of the Clones. While no one love a bad pun as much as I, they have no place in the Star Wars universe.
Mr. Abrams, handle this with care. This is my childhood (and a fair chunk of my adulthood) you hold in your creative vision. May the Force be with you as you live long and prosper.