News: Star Wars Episode IX To Begin Filming This Summer

The D23 Expo Japan took place this weekend and one of the big pieces of news to come out of it is that Star Wars Episode IX will begin filming this summer. A special panel presentation was devoted to Marvel and Star Wars with Walt Disney Studios Marketing President Ricky Strauss, being escorted by R2-D2 and C-3PO, speeking about the success of the Star Wars franchise and introduced a special video from J.J. Abrams. Abrams revealed that he was currently co-writing Episode IX ahead of directing the film this summer. 

 No specific shooting date or schedule was announced, but this was the first reveal of any sort of timeline for the film that is set to come out in 2019. No clues have been given about what direction Abrams will go with the finale of the trilogy, with many fans wondereding if Abrams will undo anything that Rian Johnson laid out in Star Wars: The Last Jedi

 Johnson had recently spoken to /Filmcast about not having regrets for his decisions, saying that: 

"A lot of things that ended up taking hold in the fan community in terms of who is Snoke, who are Rey’s parents, and the fever pitch that those rose to, I obviously knew those were questions you had coming out of Force Awakens, but I didn’t have the weight of the fan expectation of what the payoff of those questions would be. Which I think was a good thing." 

Not much is known about what Abrams will do, but he has previously stated that he wanted to take Episode IX "elsewhere," saying that:

 "Well, it’s certainly something that I’m aware of now working on Episode IX – coming back into this world after having done Episode VII. I feel like we need to approach this with the same excitement that we had when we were kids, loving what these movies were. And at the same time, we have to take them places that they haven’t gone, and that’s sort of our responsibility." 

After Abrams' message to fans, new behind the scenes footage for the Solo: A Star Wars Story was shown to the fans. Star Wars: Episode IX will be released on December 20, 2019. Solo: A Star Wars Story hit theaters on May 25th.