Home Entertainment Rumour: Kathleen Kennedy could be stepping down from Lucasfilm

Rumour: Kathleen Kennedy could be stepping down from Lucasfilm

3 min read

Inevitably when big blockbusters films don’t perform well, you can place blame as much as you want on the directors, writers and actors, but often it’s the people at the top that make the biggest difference. Just look at Warner Bros’ shocking handling of the DC Universe as proof that boardroom shenanigans often play an even bigger part in how a movie turns out. This is also why when it comes to making changes at a studio, it’s the ones at the top who have ultimate responsibility (and why these people earn the big salaries that they do, which makes me sad just thinking about that many zeros).

If there is one production job where you would think financial success is all but guaranteed, then you would likely tip Lucasfilm and Star Wars to be that franchise.. Only that is not the case with the recent Solo: A Star Wars Story reportedly going to be an estimated $50 million loss for the company. That is a massive amount of money for a franchise as iconic as Star Wars. It’s perhaps also telling that some fans are starting to get disillusioned with the property, whether due too many movies or too many divisive moments like the recent The Last Jedi (even if I feel the criticisms were unjustified).

It’s an indication that Lucasfilm needs to perhaps tread a little more cautiously than they have been with the film franchise that arguably has the most devoted fan base in the world and to change that approach, the best place to look is probably at the top. And that change may be coming according to a rumour from fansite Dork Side of the Force, which shares an excerpt from the latest edition of The Ankler newsletter indicating that there are talks of Lucasfilm President and longtime franchise producer Kathleen Kennedy stepping down from the studio in September:

While Kathleen Kennedy worked wonders relaunching this property from the abyss of the Lucas prequel trilogy and turning it into a bigger than ever all-devouring cultural force, there has to be more than some thought that it’s time for new blood at the helm. The talk out there is of a September changing of the guards. We’ll see.

Now I think it goes without saying that this is just a rumour for now and so we shouldn’t read too much into it now. While there will no doubt  be repercussions for the studio based on the recent relative failure of Solo, there is also a certain matter of Episode IX that remains in development and it might be in the best interests of everyone involved to keep Kennedy in place to at least see out the ending of that trilogy before the studio looks to someone else for direction.

It’s interesting times for Lucasfilm who finds themselves in a position they have never experienced before. Even George Lucas’ much-criticised prequel trilogy at least made buckets of money for the studio and you definitely get the feeling that although the quality of Star Wars movies seems to be on the up critically, financial success is not necessarily a guarantee anymore.

This is definitely a rumour to keep an eye on as I’m sure we’ll be hearing changes from the studio.

Last Updated: June 7, 2018


  1. RinceThis

    June 7, 2018 at 10:57

    Star Wars fans are the WORST fans.


  2. Original Heretic

    June 7, 2018 at 11:00

    If her replacements ends up being someone who makes Episode IX better than VIII, then good.
    I actually want to enjoy Star Wars when I watch it, not be bored.


  3. Graeme Selvan

    June 7, 2018 at 11:01

    I kind of hope she does, Star Wars Deserves more


    • frikkenator

      June 7, 2018 at 11:39

      She has produced some of the most iconic movies of the last 40 years, I don’t think you get much more than her.


      • Alien Emperor Trevor

        June 7, 2018 at 11:49

        Anyone who thinks she’s the problem with Star Wars is an ignorant twit.


        • cloudzn

          June 7, 2018 at 12:26

          Clearly you are not aware of her SJW ideology push into the franchise, firing of directors who did not agree with her ideas. Dave Filoni is much better suited for the position, not because of his sex but because he understands and appreciates the franchise


          • Admiral Chief

            June 7, 2018 at 13:17

            Well put

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            June 7, 2018 at 13:19

            Sorry, as soon as you say things like “sjw ideology push” I stop taking things seriously because that’s just internet conspiracies.

          • cloudzn

            June 7, 2018 at 17:26

            Clearly you haven’t seen her “The Force is female T Shirts”

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            June 7, 2018 at 18:27

            Holy crap you mean this one?
            which is identical to this one… just with two more letters?
            and doesn’t mean anything because it’s just a tshirt?

          • cloudzn

            June 8, 2018 at 04:04

            lol I see what you did there , but she did a press publicity photo with that shirt https://www.reddit.com/r/CringeAnarchy/comments/7lpobw/the_force_is_female_according_to_kathleen_kennedy/

            Its her trying appease the PC crowd that ticks me off

          • Kervyn Cloete

            June 7, 2018 at 14:37

            I’ll set aside the SJW ideology argument for now, because frankly I have had it ad nauseum with others.

            Moving onto the next point, by all accounts the firing of Phil Lord and Chris Miller happened because the pair were basically turning Solo into an ad lib comedy movie where they were literally making things up on set and completely veering off course from what had initially been agreed upon. Kennedy reportedly had several talks with them about it, but they just kept on doing their thing unheeded until the working relationship between her and them just broke down and she was forced to let them go. There was nothing unreasonable about her behaviour at all. In fact, she was looking out for the best interests of the franchise, as the Solo movie we ended up getting is actually a pretty decent one.

            What I will agree with you on is that Dave Filoni has done some fantastic work, and I really, really hope he will one day get to run with his ideas on the big screen. I would buy a ticket in a heartbeat to see a live action Asohka and Sabine movie.

          • cloudzn

            June 8, 2018 at 04:20

            I don’t question that what she is trying to do is make money like any good Studio Head. She is a great producer , but my point was to put someone is charge of creative control that understands the franchise. As for Lord and Miller not listening to Kathleen, I believe that they wanted a lighter movie then intended and the writer undermined them. I would still love to see their original cut.

      • Mr. Akill3s

        June 7, 2018 at 17:21

        You know what a producer does?? Not much. They simply write checks. Those “hits” her name is on were from the talent of Lucas and Spielberg. This is the result of non-creatives and non-visionaries thinking they are. She started her career from her husband whom was already deeply involved with Spielberg. Power went to her head, she bombed hard when her visions didn’t work. She hired a second rate director for the current trilogy. Forcing SJW agendas, blasting fans.

        She…has…no…talent. She simply had connections.


  4. For the Emperor!

    June 7, 2018 at 13:05

    Not all of the criticisms of The Last Jedi were unjustified, but there was a problem in how many people shared their views.


  5. Ben Russell-Gough

    June 7, 2018 at 15:29

    Bottom line is that Ms Kennedy is developing a habit of not being able to read whether or not directors are capable of delivering the product that the studio requires. That’s job #1 for a producer and she’s failed three times in the past 4 years; four times if you include Johnson’s dismissal-worthy decision to drop or alter all the plot threads that Abrams created in The Force Awakens.

    Then there was her defensive behaviour after The Last Jedi. Accusing significant numbers of your fan base who dares to dislike one of the studio’s productions of racism, sexism and who knows how many other social sins is not a good way to ensure that the fan-base continues to spend money on the movies and their merchandising (the latter being just as important as box office sales for Lucasfilm’s business strategy). She basically guaranteed reduced ticket sales and reduced merchandising income by her extremely vitriolic behaviour. Job #2 for a producer is to keep the franchise profitable; she’s inarguably failed at that!


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