‘Star Wars’ director says it’s time for female or non-white film-maker to take over

Star Wars: The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson has said it’s time an episode in the huge series was in the hands of a female or non-white film-maker.

The European premiere for the latest episode was held at the Royal Albert Hall in London last night, ahead of its  worldwide release tomorrow (December 14). Check out NME‘s review here.

During a press conference in central London, The Last Jedi director was asked whether the diversity in the latest films’ cast should expand to the director’s chair – to which he replied: “hell yes”.

There are so many incredibly talented female directors, directors of colour out there, and so many that I would love to see play in this universe,” said Johnson. “So hell yes, please, I’d love it to happen.”

Every director from George Lucas onwards has been a white man. JJ Abrams was at the helm for The Force Awakens, Gareth Edwards directed Rogue One, and Ron Howard is in the chair for the upcoming Solo: A Star Wars Story.

Previously, Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy has said she is keen to have a female director “when the time is right”.  “We want to make sure that when we bring a female director in to do Star Wars, they’re set up for success,” she told Variety back in 2016.

“They’re gigantic films, and you can’t come into them with essentially no experience,” she said of the franchise. 

During The Last Jedi‘s LA premiere, Johnson dedicated the event to the late Carrie Fisher. “I want to dedicate tonight to Carrie, who is up there right now flipping me the bird, saying, ‘Damn it Rian, don’t you dare make this night a solemn tribute,’” he said, adding: “So let’s all have a blast tonight for Carrie.”