Steven Knight to pen Star Wars project

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Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight is taking over scripting duties from Damon Lindelof and Justin Britt Gibson on Star Wars, it is being reported. 

It became clear a few days ago that the upcoming Star Wars project being penned by Damon Lindelof and Justin Britt-Gibson was in trouble, when Lindelof offered an opaque but very public criticism of the difficulties that come with collaborating with Lucasfilm. In fairness, he’s not the first creative to find the studio a wee bit tricky to work with either. Whilst that sounded worrying enough, it emerged yesterday that Lindelof and Britt-Gibson had walked away from the project in mid-February, a couple of days after handing in their draft for the as-yet untitled and unannounced Star Wars project that is set to be helmed by Ms. Marvel's Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy.

Despite the clear disarray surrounding the development process, it is still believed to be Lucasfilm’s most advanced film production in the Star Wars pipeline and the studio is facing increased pressure to get the wheels turning given that it is almost certain to be officially announced at the fan event,  Star Wars Celebration next month. And even more worryingly, set to be in cinemas next Christmas.

Given that there’s not yet a script everyone is happy with, that kind of timeframe puts Lucasfilm up against the clock, a worrying proposition since the studio’s pre-production processes are increasingly acquiring a reputation for being chaotic and directionless. With time ticking away, the studio has thus wasted no time bringing in another writer, with Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight stepping in to do a rewrite, one that we can assume he’s been working on for a few weeks now.

Lucasfilm needed a big name with respected credentials to appease fans disappointed by Lindelof’s departure and Knight certainly qualifies, having scripted a string of critically-acclaimed films such as Locke and Eastern Promises, not to mention the hugely-acclaimed Peaky Blinders TV show. However, whether Knight’s appointment may slow things down remains to be seen, with Lucasfilm’s production slate stating that as-yet untitled Star Wars films are due to land in 2025 and 2027. Whilst the Lindelof project was widely expected to be the first one out of the gate in 2025, a few outlets (including Knight’s IMDb page) are now listing the film as a 2027 release).

Whether Knight’s appointment will ease the concerns of fans remains to be seen, although those hoping for a more daring step forward for the series may still be disappointed by Lindelof’s departure. Still, nobody can deny Knight’s track record, although the more prominent question will be how he gets on with the Lucasfilm brass, considering so many of his forebears have struggled before walking away. We’ll bring you more on this one as we hear it.


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