Lucasfilm and Disney announced today that Gareth Edwards, director of the most recent "Godzilla" film, will be directing the first "Star Wars" stand alone film. 

It's being written by Gary Whitta, a member of the team that won a BAFTA for his work on Telltale Games' "Walking Dead" game.

From their release:

Gareth Edwards will direct the first stand-alone film, with a screenplay by Gary Whitta. The film is due out December 16, 2016.

Gareth Edwards blazed into the filmmaking forefront with his acclaimed work on Monsters, a film he wrote, directed and served on as cinematographer and visual effects artist. The skill and vision readily apparent in Monsters earned him the high-profile spot directing this year's smash hit Godzilla.

"Ever since I saw Star Wars I knew exactly what I wanted to do for the rest of my life - join the Rebel Alliance! I could not be more excited & honored to go on this mission with Lucasfilm, said Edwards.

Gary Whittas screenwriting credits include 2010s The Book of Eli starring Denzel Washington. He is also well known as a journalist and editor in the video game industry, as well as part of the BAFTA award-winning team on Telltale Games adaptation of The Walking Dead.

Whitta states, "From the moment I first saw the original movie as a wide-eyed kid, Star Wars has been the single most profound inspiration to my imagination and to my career as a writer. It is deeply special to me,so to be given the opportunity to contribute to its ongoing legacy, especially in collaboration with a film-maker as talented as Gareth,is literally a dream come true. I'm still pinching myself."

By all accounts, "Monsters" and Telltale's "Walking Dead" have been fantastic, but let's hope they pull out their A-game, which was not on display in "Godzilla." Edwards directed excellent action sequences in "Godzilla," but the script and cast left much to be desired. Let's hope Whitta can balance that out.

And there's also no word about the subject matter the film will tackle. Could this be Boba Fett? Given Edward's track record, could this be a film set on the homeworld of the Rancors? Or an adaptation of the Zillo Beast episodes of "The Clone Wars?" Anything is possible.

This film hits theatres December 16, 2016.

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Tags: stand alone , godzilla , star wars