UPDATED: Zack Snyder is Developing a 'Star Wars' Spin-Off

Monday, 14 January 2013 14:24 Written by  Jordan DeSaulnier
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UPDATED: Zack Snyder is Developing a 'Star Wars' Spin-Off

Zack Snyder is one of the many, many big-time directors who have ruled out directing Star Wars: Episode VII, which kicks off a new trilogy in the summer of 2015. 

That remains true, but apparently Snyder is developing a Star Wars movie that won't be part of the new trilogy, but will instead be a spin-off inspired by Seven Samurai.

Generally regarded as one of the finest motion pictures ever filmed, Akira Kurosawa's 1954 masterpiece actually served as an inspiration for George Lucas in writing and directing the original Star Wars.  The story, which finds a group of Ronin protecting a small, otherwise defenseless Japanese village from bandits, has served as a loose template for innumerable movies, including the Western remake The Magnificent Seven.

This new Star Wars tale would find the masterless samurai replaced by Jedi, according to Vulture.  It's not expected to be part of the upcoming trilogy set after Return of the Jedi, but will nonetheless take place a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.  Specifically, it's expected to take place concurrently with the new number episodes.

It's important to note that though he's reportedly developing this Star Wars story, that doesn't necessarily mean that Snyder, currently quite busy in post-production on the Superman reboot Man of Steel, will actually direct the thing.  It's possible that he will opt to produce.  Either way, the director of the Dawn of the Dead remake and Watchmen clearly doesn't mind tackling daunting material with loaded geeky expectations.

Toy Story 3 and Little Miss Sunshine screenwriter Michael Arndt is currently busy writing Star Wars: Episode VII, the first of many Star Wars movies that will arrive every two to three years.  When Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg were hired by Lucasfilm and its new owner, Disney, to write more Star Wars movies, we first assumed that they would be writing Episode VIII and Episode IX, but a subsequent report indicated the two could, in fact, be toiling away on spin-offs set within the familiar universe.  So perhaps Snyder's Star Wars is also the one being written by either Kasdan or Kinberg.

There's a whole lot we don't know at this point, but it's clear that Disney and new Lucasfilm honcho Kathleen Kennedy are serious about maximizing the amount of Star Wars in theaters, and they're not limiting themselves to a new trilogy.  Instead, the ambition is apparently to create a sprawling shared universe that doesn't necessarily revolve around the Skywalker family.

Stay tuned for more on Snyder's Seven Samurai-style Star Wars spin-off.

UPDATE: Well, that didn't take long.  Snyder's representatives tell THR's Heat Vision that the director is not developing a spin-off, saying, "While he is super flattered because he is a huge fan, Zack is not involved in any way with the new Star Wars. He is currently in post on his two films, Man of Steel and 300: Battle of Artemisia.

That doesn't guarantee that Snyder's not doing it, but it puts a damper on the whole thing at the very least.

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