Star Wars Episode IX Has Hired A Female Director

Ava Du Vernay Tweet

The filmmaker and producer (and, fun fact, bit actor in "Legally Blonde") will serve as the second unit director on Abrams' upcoming untitled "Episode IX", marking the first time an African-American woman has served in any directing capacity on a "Star Wars" film. "Happy to share this historic news". This second unit shoots simultaneously with the first unit, which is comprised of shots involving the principal cast and is overseen by the director.

While the ever-expanding movie franchise has been taken to task plenty of times for its repeated hiring of exactly one type of filmmaker - white males, including recent turns from Ron Howard and Rian Johnson - "The Force Awakens" director J.J. Abrams is bringing someone brand new into the fold: filmmaker Victoria Mahoney.

Alongside that caption, DuVernay posted a photo of Abrams and Mahoney standing together.

We hope that by hiring Mahoney as the second unit director on Episode IX, that they are beginning a precedent of hiring a much wider range of talented and diverse directors. Maybe she wants to become more familiar with how a big budget movie is made so that she will be perfectly skilled for when it's her turn to be the director of a Star Wars movie or some other franchise tentpole production. While everyone at Lucasfilm has maintained that both female and POC directors would be hired eventually, this is a major step forward, making the idea a reality.

Congratulations to Victoria Mahoney on this awesome new role.

Catt's outta the bag. "Thank you Ava for putting my name in the #StarWars #LucasFilm hat", she wrote. "Thank you #JJAbrams for inviting me on your ferocious ride", she tweeted.

Mahoney also launched a television directing career with Queen of Sugar and has managed episodes of ABC's Grey's Anatomy.

Ava DuVernay, director of Disney's A Wrinkle in Time and one of the hot-tipped favorites to land a Star Wars gig, marked the announcement with a Twitter post. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

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