There's been a lot of talk about the stars of the original Star Wars returning for J.J. Abrams' Star Wars: Episode VII, but perhaps the biggest star in the whole damned galaxy, iconic composer John Williams, has been left out of the conversation... until now. Would Star Wars still be Star Wars without the world's most lauded movie musician behind the podium? According to Williams himself, we don't necessarily have to find out.
Quoth the Williams (via John Williams Fan): “We’re about to play Star Wars, and each time we play it, I’m reminded of the first time we played it decades ago. Neither I, nor George [Lucas], nor anyone else involved thought this would go far or in a few years there would be a sequel and I’d have to revisit the themes… and years later another trilogy. Now we’re hearing of a new set of movies coming in 2015, 2016… so I need to make sure I’m still ready to go in a few years for what I hope would be continued work with George…”
This could be good news for old school Star Wars fans, since at the very least Williams is open to the idea of composing new music for new movies. Then again, has the time come to at least look into alternatives to John Williams as the movies move forward into a new era? J.J. Abrams' most frequent musical collaborator, Michael Giacchino (Star Trek, "Lost"), is now one of the most highly respected composers in the entertainment industry, and has proven himself fully capable of capturing the sweep of a John Williams-like composition while still adding his own particular je ne sais pas. At some point in the future we may be forced to sit through a Star Wars movie without a John Williams score for one reason or another. Would not the end of the George Lucas era be as good, or at least as symbolic an opportunity as any to bring in someone new? Or would turning down John Williams when he's clearly willing to make himself available raise the ire of too many fans around the world?
Regardless of the issues involved, we imagine that John Williams has been an important part of the conversations J.J. Abrams and Disney have been having with each other. Whatever decision they come to, his involvement is on the table now, and John Williams could very well continue being the musical voice of Star Wars for years to come.