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So What Does This Chloé Zhao Star Wars Rumor Mean?

Chloé Zhao has made it very clear that she wants to do a Star Wars movie, and as someone who loves how nerdy Zhao is, I think it’d be the perfect franchise for her to dive into. So, when word began circulating that Zhao was in talks to direct the Star Wars movie produced by Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige, I got excited at the prospect.

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There are few creatives, in my opinion, who embrace their own nerdiness in the way that Zhao does. Whether it is talking about reading fanfiction for her own movie (or writing it herself) or gasping “Nova” when seeing a Nova mask during an interview, Zhao isn’t afraid to admit that she’s a nerd, and it shows in the films she’s working on. Her love of cinema is clear in her work and now, with her work on Marvel’s Eternals, we get to see her comic side shine.

So, to me, all of that plays perfectly in her working on a Star Wars, and clearly Zhao and Feige have a great working relationship after Eternals. But what does that mean for her future with not only Star Wars but the Marvel Cinematic Universe, as well?

What about Marvel?

Right now, Zhao isn’t confirmed to be coming back to the MCU, but that doesn’t mean she’s completely done with it, either. As writes, Zhao has said she has more ideas for the future of the Eternals.

I was encouraged to make a good standalone film, very encouraged to do that. I think now the film belongs to you, not me, and we want to see how this child grows in this scary, wild, and beautiful world,” Zhao told JoBlo. “And then we need to watch and listen and learn and then see where we go from there. But I think, maybe I’m wrong about this, but I feel like filmmakers, it doesn’t matter what genre, they tend to make the same movie over and over and over (laughs).”

In theory, that doesn’t mean she’s done with the MCU. Taika Waititi had similar responses after he made Thor: Ragnarok, before Thor: Love and Thunder or his involvement with it was announced. The Marvel director code must say something about making your film stand on its own without confirming or denying your return to the franchise. But I don’t see Marvel letting a director like Chloé Zhao go. While the reviews for Eternals were mixed, the consensus was that the movie itself and the scope of it was beautiful, and that’s all thanks to Zhao!

All this doesn’t mean she can’t do a Star Wars as well. If anything, we can look back to Taika Waititi to see that you can direct in both franchises at the same time and make it work. And I personally think that Chloé Zhao has the right style of directing to fit with Star Wars. Given her love of the franchise, I know it will be in good hands with her behind the lens.

(image: CHARLY TRIBALLEAU/AFP via Getty Images)

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Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh.