At this point, it's hard to think of anyone other than J.J. Abrams spearheading the new Star Wars trilogy — cast and crew sorted, footage teased, and practical effects ballyhooed.
But there was a chance, however small, that David Fincher would have ushered in a new trilogy. Speaking to Total Film, the director of Gone Girl and The Social Network confirmed that he had been approached by Star Wars producer Kathleen Kennedy before ultimately saying no.
But if you want a glimpse into what a Fincher-esque version of Star Wars could've been, this is his interpretation of the original trilogy:
I always thought of Star Wars as the story of two slaves [C-3PO and R2-D2] who go from owner to owner, witnessing their masters' folly, the ultimate folly of man... I thought it was an interesting idea in the first two, but it's kind of gone by Return Of The Jedi.
So let's say there exists a parallel universe wherein Abrams said no and Fincher said yes. Where Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, not John Williams, score a film based on "the feeling of hatred and dispassion created through technology."
The prequels will have to be reinterpreted / retconned, of course, to match the tone:
- Episode I: The Phantom Menace. A young but gifted child, known henceforth as The Creator, births life in a protocol droid who later befriends a proletariat droid who works with the Royal Naboo monarchy and lacks the ability to speak to biological creatures. The Creator later abandons his Threepio and sets out on a life of bloodshed.
- Episode II: Attack of The Clones. Threepio witnesses The Creator's mother kidnapped by those who do not value the gift of life. Later on, his consciousness is transferred to a militaristic body and he experiences, however briefly, bloodlust firsthand.
- Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. The Creator seeks penance by becoming a half-man, half-machine hybrid. Threepio's memories of The Creator are erased by new masters.
For all we know, the new trilogy would be about the inevitable droid uprising. Maybe droids have learned how to create humanoid models that have infiltrated all civilizations and strike at once, forcing the last fleeting bits of humanity to abandon their planets aboard the Millennium Falcon in search of... honestly, I'm not sure if I'm riffing on Battlestar Galactica or Mass Effect at this point. But either way, I'd like to think my alternative universe self waited two hours in line to see Fincher's Episode VII opening night.