Star Wars Episode 9 Will Be Shot on Film, Not Digitally, Director Confirms

Despite the dominance of digital as the principal filmmaking format in Hollywood, the new Star Wars movies are playing their part in keeping old-fashioned 35mm film alive. Following JJ Abrams and Rian Johnson’s decisions to shoot Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Episode 8 on film, Colin Trevorrow has now confirmed that he will make Episode 9 on 35mm too.

As Variety reports, Trevorrow spoke about the choice at a recent panel discussion at the Sundance Film Festival. “It’s a period film. It happened a long time ago,” he said. “There’s something in my brain that says, ‘Well they didn’t have video cameras then.'”

Trevorrow used 35mm to make his previous film, the hugely successful Jurassic World, while Abrams is yet to shoot a movie digitally. Both directors are part of a small movement of high-profile directors who insist on using film and are determined to keep the format valid in Hollywood. Others include Interstellar director Christopher Nolan and Quentin Tarantino, whose latest movie, The Hateful Eight, was shot on the rarely used 70mm format.

At the same panel discussion, Nolan spoke about “a culture around wanting to kill film,” and denied that shooting digitally was cheaper and easier than 35mm.

“There needs to be a choice,” he said. “As a medium it will continue to exist. It has to continue to exist. It’s pointless to pretend it has to go away.”

Star Wars: Episode 9 is scheduled for release in 2019.

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