J.J. Abrams has spoken about the moment he played an early cut of The Force Awakens to the executives at Disney. Read a few choice quotes below...
On how it felt to play an incomplete cut of The Force Awakens-
Apparently when you direct the first Star Wars in a decade you tend to bargain a lot with the people picking up the tab. Here is what J.J. Abrams had to say about managing the expectations of his first audience.
And when the first screening went well?
I really like J.J. Abrams, he seems very normal for a guy in his position. I can understand why he was hesitant about taking the job, especially if he knew that one day he'd be in exactly this position, offering the movie to the producers and the executives for approval. This is a pivotal moment for us too. It's not unusual for executives to second guess a director at this stage and take the print away and recut it, retool it and make a mess of things. We had an example of that this summer, and the results were less than Fantastic.
I think Kathleen Kennedy may have chosen a director like J.J. Abrams, not only because he is a proven director, but because he is seasoned enough and a strong enough character to retain control of his movie. A less established film maker in the director's chair at this point may have tempted the anxious executives to seize control. It's worth mentioning that this happened to George Lucas with Thx-1138 and American Graffiti in the early days of his career. Thankfully the experience galvanised the director's resolve and he became, perhaps the most notable independent film maker in history.
Thank you for reading,