Has Star Wars Found Its First Female Director?



At the moment, there are a lot of blockbuster movies being made, but the biggest of the big in the modern landscape are without question Star Wars movies. Disney purchased all of Lucasfilm back in 2012 for more than $4 billion and they are making the most of that investment. Unfortunately, none of these Star Wars installments are being helmed by women, yet. But at least one lady working in Hollywood wants a shot at a future Star Wars standalone adventure.

Speaking with Cinemablend recently, Doctor Who and Tank Girl director Rachel Talalay expressed interest in directing a future Star Wars movie. Not only that, but she feels she has the qualifications in order to do the job well. Here is what she had to say.

“Absolutely. Are you kidding me? Absolutely. Do I not have enough effects experience and enough nerd pedigree? I think not just Tank Girl but I think Doctor Who in terms of science fiction scope, effects scope, iconic projects, love of science fiction, all of the above. It would be incredible to be involved in one of those projects. When you hear Carrie Fisher talk about what it was like to be almost one of the only women around to start with, and now seeing where the series has gone, it’s just so empowering and thrilling and I feel this is part of my mission in life is to strengthen – and Tank Girl being the essence of it – female roles in front of and behind the camera.”

It is very likely that most people won’t recognize Rachel Talalay by name, but she has a long history under her belt. She started out directing Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare, which isn’t exactly a well-regarded entry in the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise, to say the least. However, she is most well known in the movie world for directing 1995’s Tank Girl, which bombed at the box office and was critically panned. The movie completely derailed her career, and she was banished from Hollywood for nearly two decades. Though it has gone into become a substantial cult hit in recent years.

In the time since the Tank Girl disaster, Rachel Talalay found a home directing TV and has been working on some of the biggest, effects-heavy shows out there like Supergirl, The Flash and Doctor Who. She has also worked on very character driven shows like Sherlock, so she has definitely proven herself as a viable director again. Recently, Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy made some comments at a press conference for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story about the potential to have a female director for a Star Wars movie in the future. The comments served as clarification for a controversial statement on the matter she had made earlier. Here is what she had to say.

“That’s not true. [Pats Gareth Edwards’ shoulder]. This gentleman did Godzilla before we hired him to direct the movie, and that quote was taken out of context. And I, as you can imagine, have every intention of giving somebody an opportunity. So if somebody actually moves through the process of making movies and wants to make a Star Wars movie, and shows that they have actually stepped into the role on that level, of course we’re going to consider a woman. That goes without saying. I think there’s many. And I’ve talked to most of them. [Laughter] So, there are many out there.”

Prior to these comments, Kathleen Kennedy stated that a female director who didn’t have big-budget, blockbuster experience wouldn’t be “suitable” for a Star Wars movie. Even with that in mind, it seems like Rachel Talalay has the resume to justify making a movie in a galaxy far, far away at some point. Lucasfilm has director’s lined up for the projects they have officially announced, but there is an untitled, unannounced standalone Star Wars movie pegged for 2020, so who knows? Maybe Rachel Talalay will be getting a phone call about that in the near future. In the recent past, Talalay has also been mentioned in terms of being the first female director to take on a Marvel movie, as Captain Marvel still sits without a director. Perhaps she’ll land that job and set the stage for a Star Wars movie in the near future.



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