J.J. Abrams to return to Star Wars as replacement director for Episode IX.

After much speculation it has now been confirmed that Director J.J. Abrams will return to the director’s chair for the as yet, untitled ninth episode of the Star Wars saga.

Following the departure of director Colin Trevorrow last week, there was heavy speculation as to who would be his replacement with both Abrams and Episode VIII director Rian Johnson the main front runners, although some less reputable sites did attempt to float rumours of George Lucas making a return to the universe that he created. Needless to say we paid such rumours no mind. Deadline reported earlier today that Johnson had ruled himself out and that Abrams will be both writing and directing Episode IX.

Lucasfilm released the following official statement confirming Abrams’ return on Star Wars.com;

“J.J. Abrams, who launched a new era of Star Wars with The Force Awakens in 2015, is returning to complete the sequel trilogy as writer and director of Star Wars: Episode IX. Abrams will co-write the film with Chris Terrio. Star Wars: Episode IX will be produced by Kathleen Kennedy, Michelle Rejwan, Abrams, Bad Robot, and Lucasfilm.”

“With The Force Awakens, J.J. delivered everything we could have possibly hoped for, and I am so excited that he is coming back to close out this trilogy,” said Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy.