It's rumor time, Star Wars fans! Keyword being rumor, which needs to be made clear right up top, but this is a believable enough rumor, and one that would carry with it many implications. Kathleen Kennedy has been the head of Lucasfilm ever since the company was purchased by Disney in 2012, but that could be changing in the relatively near future, as it's being suggested that the legendary producer will step down from her post in 2021.
This comes from one of the folks over at Making Star Wars, Jason Ward, who helps run the often reliable fan site that has been spot on with some big news with the franchise in the past. Still, until we get some official word from someone at Luscasilm, or from Kathleen Kennedy herself, this exists purely in the rumor mill. That said, Ward claims Kennedy will step down as president after work is finished on Indiana Jones 5, which is set to hit theaters in July 2021. That means Kennedy would be on well beyond the release of The Rise of Skywalker this December.
We've heard reports previously, largely in the wake of the divisive response to The Last Jedi, that Kathleen Kennedy would possibly be leaving as President of Lucasfilm. However, in September 2018, her contract was renewed for three more years. Those doing some quick math will note that leaves her on the books until 2021. So, at that point, Kennedy could, without ruffling any feathers, gracefully step down from her position. The question then becomes, who would take over as the head of Star Wars and the rest of Lucasfilm beyond 2021? That's where we can really run wild with speculation.
We recently learned that Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige, one of the most successful producers in Hollywood history, is set to produce a Star Wars movie. Could it be that he's being groomed to take over Lucasfilm? What would that mean for the future of Marvel Studios? It's easy to see why Disney would look to Feige, should this come to pass, but it could stretch Feige a bit thin. A couple of other options. One is Dave Filoni, who has been a part of a galaxy far, far away for a long time, as the creator of animated shows like The Clone Wars and Rebels. He recently made the jump to live-action with The Mandalorian and, it could be argued, nobody knows this franchise better than he does.
Speaking of The Mandalorian, there's also Jon Favreau, who is heading up that series and has directed hits like Iron Man and The Lion King. Favreau is a huge Star Wars fan and has a solid resume. All of this to say, there are plenty of candidates for the gig. By 2021, Kathleen Kennedy will have been head of Lucasfilm for nearly a decade. That's a long time to hold such a powerful position in Hollywood and it's easy to understand that she simply may want to explore other opportunities in her career. We'll see how this shakes out, but this will be interesting to keep an eye on. This news comes from Now, This is Podcasting!