A few months ago, J. J. Abrams was confirmed as the director for the upcoming Star Wars film The Force Awakens, the first installment in the franchise’s highly anticipated sequel trilogy. Most fans were pleased with the announcement, happily entrusting Abrams with the task of bringing the next chapter of America’s most beloved space adventure series to life. However, earlier this week, some rather unsettling information surfaced: Mr. Abrams has already gotten to direct several other movies–but they’re still letting him direct this one.
Talk about unfair! What happened to the time-honored principle of “everybody gets a turn”? If you ask me, J.J. Abrams ought to be patient and let everyone have a chance at directing at least one movie before he moves on to what will be his fifth directing credit on a major motion picture. For how much longer will industry heads stand idly by as Abrams makes a mockery of the values of patience and fairness upon which the proud tradition of the American film was established?
Would Abrams help himself to seconds of a meal at a dinner party while other guests were still waiting for firsts? Would the relentless film thief cut in line to ride Blackbeard’s Lost Treasure Train at Six Flags? Would he take it upon himself to prevent forest fires even though the signs clearly specified that only I could do this? I’ve discussed this issue with several film industry experts, and most of them agreed that these situations are analogous.
Some people have tried to convince me that, in fact, everyone has had their turn to direct at least one motion picture, so it’s okay for Abrams to take another turn. This is demonstrably false: examples of people who have yet to direct a movie include Monica Lewinsky, former Canadian Minister of Finance Ralph Goodale, my third cousin Carolyn, and Bishop Desmond Tutu. Shame on J. J. Abrams for greedily putting himself ahead of decent, hardworking people like these–particularly Minister Goodale, who has intimated several times that he is “just dying to direct some sort of romantic comedy, possibly starring Dennis Quaid.”
Needless to say, Disney and Lucasfilm now have something of a scandal on their hands. To the many people still eagerly awaiting their directorial debut, the decision to indulge Abrams with yet another project is rather upsetting. Equally controversial is the casting of Harrison Ford as Han Solo, seeing as Mr. Ford already got to play Han in all three of the original Star Wars films.
— MF ’19