Back when Disney announced production on "Star Wars: Episode VII," Zack Snyder's name quickly emerged as a candidate before the director quickly ruled himself out. However, that doesn't mean that Snyder completely shut the door on "Star Wars," as Vulture reports that he is now developing a spin-off film for Disney.
Vulture's report indicates that the film will be a riff on Akira Kurosawa's "Seven Samurai" and will run "parallel to the next trilogy." While the report says that the film's placement within the "Star Wars" chronology isn't clear, insiders expect the film to operate outside of the numbered episodes.
Furthermore, the stand-alone film is said to be set after the events of "Return of the Jedi," though there is no indication just how far into the chronology it will occur. Since the Jedi weren't very populous at the end of "Return of the Jedi," one might assume that this could be set even after the upcoming sequel trilogy.
Plot details are obviously scarce, but the "Seven Samurai" reference point provides some obvious clues. Instead of a band of samurai protecting a besieged, helpless village from bandits, it'll presumably be Jedi stepping in on their behalf.
A "Star Wars" update of Kurosawa is nothing new; George Lucas has admitted the influence of the legendary director numerous times in the past, and the fingerprints of "The Hidden Fortress" are all over the first "Star Wars."
It should be noted that Vulture doesn't specifically state that Snyder is directing this film but merely "developing" it. Whether or not he comes aboard to actually helm the film will be worth watching since turning Snyder loose in the "Star Wars" universe could result in the most visually dazzling installment yet.
Regardless, this news confirms that Disney is serious about getting a return on their $4 billion investment, as the studio isn't content to simply produce the Sequel Trilogy and leave it be. Not only does it have Snyder cooking up this film, but it's also attached Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg to a another unspecified "Star Wars" project.