It isn’t easy walking away from a huge franchise and paycheck but that’s exactly what STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS director J. J. Abrams did, but why exactly did he do it? Fans around the world loved Abram’s vision as apparent from the huge box office numbers the most recent outing of the series. So what made the prolific director depart? Well in his own words he simply knew it was time to go.
At South by Southwest Abrams told Fortune:
“I knew that if it worked, it was the perfect time to step down – and if it didn’t, no one would want me to do it anyway.”
Although he has walked away from the director’s chair Abrams still remains on as an executive producer for Episodes VIII and IX, giving a guiding hand on the projects. When asked about his current role, J.J. stated:
“I’m very happy to be where I am. Rian Johnson [who is currently directing Episode VIII] is brilliant and needs no help from me. As executive producer, I’ve been collaborating with them, but they are obviously doing all of the heavy lifting and it’s very exciting to see what’s going on.”
For the next big thing from Abrams keep an eye out for HBO’s reboot of the sci-fi western WestWorld.
"Westworld is one of those things I've wanted to work on for so long. I had a meeting probably 21 years ago with Michael Crichton [who wrote and directed the 1973 original film] about doing this. And it's taken along time to get this going.
At the heart of Westworld is this story of consciousness and oppression and discover. It's one of the projects I feel most grateful and lucky to be a part of. What [the directorial team has] done is so stunning and cool and they're not rushing it because of business maters and the network is giving them the time. That is never a bad move."
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