J.J. Abrams will return to 'Star Wars' to direct 'Episode IX,' replacing Colin Trevorrow

J.J. Abrams will return to 'Star Wars' to direct 'Episode IX,' replacing Colin TrevorrowEntertainment

The ‘Star Wars’ movie franchise has parted ways with another director. USA TODAY

A steady hand is returning to guide the Force. 

Lucasfilm announced Tuesday that J.J. Abrams, who ushered the Star Wars franchise into its modern era with 2015’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens, will return to the series to direct Star Wars: Episode IX. Abrams will co-write the script for the film, along with Argo and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice writer Chris Terrio.

“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,” Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy said in a statement at StarWars.com.

J.J. Abrams will return to 'Star Wars' to direct 'Episode IX,' replacing Colin TrevorrowEntertainment

Disney’s teaser trailer for ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ picks up with Rey’s encounter with Luke.

Abrams steps into the director’s chair after Lucasfilm announced last week that it would be parting ways with director Colin Trevorrow (Jurassic World), who had been slated to direct the installment. 

“Colin has been a wonderful collaborator throughout the development process, but we have all come to the conclusion that our visions for the project differ,” Lucasfilm’s statement said. “We wish Colin the best and will be sharing more information about the film soon.”

More: We’re a little worried about Han Solo, guys

Related: Everything we learned from the ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ panel

A director shake-up also occurred earlier this year on the still-untitled young Han Solo film, when directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller (The Lego Movie) were fired with just weeks left of filming. They were replaced by Ron Howard.

Star Wars: Episode IX is scheduled for release May 24, 2019. The eighth episode, The Last Jedi, directed by Rian Johnson, will hit theaters Dec. 15. 

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