“With The Force Awakens, J.J. delivered everything we could have possibly hoped for, and I am so excited that he is coming back to close out this trilogy,” said Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy in a statement.
Abrams will also help write the script with Chris Terrio. He is returning to the franchise after director Colin Trevorrow as his working relationship with the Lucasfilm chief reportedly became “unmanageable.”
“Lucasfilm and Colin Trevorrow have mutually chosen to part ways on Star Wars: Episode IX,” it was previously announced. “Colin has been a wonderful collaborator throughout the development process, but we have all come to the conclusion that our visions for the project differ. We wish Colin the best and will be sharing more information about the film soon.”
Colin Trevorrow’s departure came after Phil Lord and Chris Miller exited the Han Solo stand-alone movie. The duo was later replaced by Ron Howard. The principal photography of previous film, “”, was handled by Gareth Edwards but it underwent extensive reshoots under a different director, Tony Gilroy.
“The Force Awakens” is the first film in the revived “Star Wars” franchise. It was a commercial hit, grossing over 2 billion worldwide and becoming the third highest grossing film of all time. It introduced a new generation of heroes like Rey () and Finn () as well as villain Kylo Ren ().
The trio will return in “” which is due December 15. Finally the threequel, “Episode IX”, will follow on May 24, 2019. Another stand-alone movie focusing on Jedi master Obi-Wan Kenobi is also in the works.