‘Godzilla’ director Gareth Edwards has signed on to helm the recently announced first stand-alone film in the ‘Star Wars‘ movie franchise. Lucasfilm and Disney have scheduled the stand-alone movie is set to be released on December 16, 2016.

The production companies also revealed that they have begun development on multiple stand-alone movies that will offer new stories beyond the core Saga. The stand-alone entries will be made in addition to the new trilogy, which will kick off with next year’s ‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ and will be directed by J.J. Abrams.

Edwards first gained fame for his acclaimed work on the 2010 sci-fi thriller, ‘Monsters,’ which he wrote, helmed and served as the cinematographer and visual effects artist. The skills he showed on the drama earned his the high profile directing job on this year’s hit sci-fi action adventure, ‘Godzilla.’

Edwards will be joined on the new ‘Star Wars’ stand-alone film by scribe Gary Whitta, who previously wrote Denzel Washington’s ‘The Book of Eli.’ The journalist is also an editor in the video game industry, and is also a part of the BAFTA award-winning team on Telltale Games’ adaption of ‘The Walking Dead.’

“Ever since I saw Star Wars I knew exactly what I wanted to do for the rest of my life – join the Rebel Alliance! I could not be more excited & honored to go on this mission with Lucasfilm,” Edwards said about directing the first ‘Star Wars’ stand-alone film.

Whitta also shared his excitement on working on the project, saying “From the moment I first saw the original movie as a wide-eyed kid, Star Wars has been the single most profound inspiration to my imagination and to my career as a writer. It is deeply special to me, so to be given the opportunity to contribute to its ongoing legacy, especially in collaboration with a film-maker as talented as Gareth, is literally a dream come true. I’m still pinching myself.”

Gareth Edwards and Gary Whitta Onboard for Star Wars Stand-Alone Film
Director Gareth Edwards

Written by: Karen Benardello

By Karen Benardello

As a graduate of LIU Post with a B.F.A in Journalism, Print and Electronic, Karen Benardello serves as ShockYa's Senior Movies & Television Editor. Her duties include interviewing filmmakers and musicians, and scribing movie, television and music reviews and news articles. As a New York City-area based journalist, she's a member of the guilds, New York Film Critics Online and the Women Film Critics Circle.

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