In a major update to the future of the Star Wars saga on the big screen, Deadline is reporting that Brick, Looper and The Brothers Bloom helmer Rian Johnson is making plans to write and direct Star Wars: Episode VIII. Although the outlet is also reporting that he'll direct Star Wars: Episode IX, TheWrap claims that Johnson will only provide a treatment for the saga-finale and that a director for that final film has not yet been decided on. We'll update with official word as soon as it's available.
Johnson joins a seemingly ever-growing slate of top directors that are setting lightspeed coordinates for a galaxy far, far away. J.J. Abrams is currently filming Star Wars: Episode VII while both Gareth Edwards (Godzilla, Monsters) and Josh Trank (Chronicle) are planning to helm solo films. The plan is for a new Star Wars film to hit every year beginning with Episode VII on December 18, 2015.
Johnson took to Twitter as news of the deal broke, sharing his thoughts on the announcement via the below video clip from Phil Kaufman's 1983 film The Right Stuff. (Please be aware, the clip does contain some strong language).