Josh Trank has just been announced as the latest director to be taking on a new standalone Star Wars film to complement the planned trilogy. Disney and LucasFilm seem to be wasting no time in lining up the next franchise additions after Jj Abrams' Star Wars: Episode VII, which is due out in December 2015.

"In addition to the episodes of a new Star Wars trilogy, Lucasfilm and Disney continue development of multiple stand-alone movies that will offer new stories beyond the core Saga. The newest director to come on board is Josh Trank," stated a press release from Lucasfilm today, via WSJ.

Trank, who made his name with the acclaimed thriller Chronicle, is the second hot young director to have been hired by the studios after Godzilla's Gareth Edwards was snapped up.

Whether the newbie directors have been hired for their youthful enthusiasm or whether the studios need filmmaking's relative newcomers to mould into their own image is unclear but both movie-making whizzes are proclaimed Star Wars devotees.

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"The magic of the Star Wars Universe defined my entire childhood. The opportunity to expand on that experience for future generations is the most incredible dream of all time," said Trank today.

"We're thrilled to welcome Josh into the family," says Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy. "He is such an incredible talent and has a great imagination and sense of innovation. That makes him perfectly suited to Star Wars, and for this new slate of movies that reach beyond the core characters and storylines of Episodes I through IX."

Kennedy's "beyond the core character" phrase seem to call to question an earlier rumour that the non-trilogy movies would focus on individual characters that we've already met, such as bounty hunter Boba Fett, a young Han Solo and Yoda.

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Little is known yet about the content of the planned standalone films but it has been stated that they will be set in the universe originally conceived by Lucas, but will not tie directly into the plot of the new trilogy that Abrams is working on.

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