J.J. Abrams gave his most revealing Star Wars interview so far (which isn’t really saying much) to Playboy? Well. If you want to hear about Star Trek you can head on over there, but Star Wars fans, read on.
Okay, okay, he does say that doing a third Star Trek isn’t out of the question.
As for Star Wars, he wouldn’t comment on still-unofficial of returning cast members, or if the new trilogy will be ‘distinct.’ He’s “not going to give my opinion on the original movies or characters.”
When asked about broad ideas and the reaction to The Phantom Menace:
I try to approach a project from what it’s asking. What does it need to be? What is it demanding? With Star Wars, one has to take into account what has preceded it, what worked, what didn’t. There are cautionary tales for anything you take on that has a legacy—things you look at and think, I want to avoid this or that, or I want to do more of something. But even that feels like an outside-in approach, and it’s not how I work. For me, the key is when you have a script; it’s telling you what it wants to be.
On the pressure of taking on the franchise:
I meant if I viewed this from a fan’s point of view—and no one’s a bigger Star Wars fan than I am—or from a legacy standpoint, it would scare the hell out of me. But instead of trying to climb this mountain in one giant leap, I’m just enjoying the opportunity and looking to the people I’m working with. I’ve known Kathy for years. I’ve worked with the screenwriter, Michael Arndt, for a long time. I’ve known George for a number of years and he’s now a friend. Even if this wasn’t Star Wars, I’d be enormously fortunate to work with them.
And of course:
For me to talk to you about what the big themes or ideas are before they exist is disingenuous, but naturally I have a big say in how this gets put together. When I get involved with something, I own it and carry the responsibility of the job.
Well, Playboy, you tried.
It’s a big interview, so he also talks about his TV shows, growing up in Hollywood, Tom Cruise and more.