Will John Williams return for JJ Abrams’s Star Wars?

With JJ Abrams now officially on board for Star Wars, the rumors about who could be coming back to the Empire have been hitting the web fast and furious.

The big rumor is that the three Star Wars primaries, Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, and Carrie Fisher, will return, and in recent days, rumors of Ford closing a deal were everywhere. 

There was also a rumor that classic poster artist Drew Struzan would come back to design the ad campaign, but this story turned out to be a bit exaggerated. (We still hope he’ll be back, he’s done incredible art for the series, and he would be a welcome member of the original team). In the same vein, John Williams also just talked about possibly coming back to compose the music as well. 

Williams just celebrated his 81st birthday on February 8, but he’s certainly not slowing down. He just composed the music for Spielberg’s Lincoln, War Horse, and The Adventures of Tintin, and there’s no question what that with Star Wars he created one of the most memorable scores in cinema history. 

So Vulture and ComingSoon have reported that Williams has recently said the following at a recent performance of his music: “Neither I, nor George, nor anyone else involved thought this would go far or in a few yeas 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.”

ComingSoon points out that Abrams has his own Williams, composer Michael Giacchino, but it would be hard to imagine the Star Wars films without Williams’s music. His score for the ’77 original is such an important element of the film. Lucas certainly gathered great footage, but the music took things up a whole new level, much like Williams’s score also did wonders for Jaws. 

It would be hard to imagine Star Wars with any other music, or any other composer either. If another composer comes aboard, it would have to reference the original music, or they’d be major geek revolts all over the globe. Music is an important component for any movie. The right score can send a movie through the roof, just as the wrong score can also hurt a film. Williams’s music for Star Wars is one of the most memorable scores of the 20th century, and there probably isn’t a person alive who can’t at least hum a few bars. 

So like Struzan, we’re certain Williams would absolutely be welcome back with open arms to Star Wars, that’s a given. Whether he creates all new music for the JJ Abrams installment, or riffs on the classic Star Wars music he created a long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, we’ll be more than happy to have him back any time.