Kennedy made an appearance at the Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit in Washington, and discussed the possibility of a female helmer with The Guardian.
“There’s nothing we’d like more than to find a female director for ‘Star Wars’,” she said. “There is an assumption made that the people involved should predominantly be men. There are women who are ‘Star Wars’ fans. That’s what’s so insane.”
While the directors for the next installments to the main saga have already been found — J.J. Abrams for “Episode VII,” Rian Johnson for “Episode VIII” and Colin Trevorrow for “Episode IX” — Kennedy would love to find the right female director for one of the “Star Wars” spin-off films. “Rogue One” is being helmed by Gareth Edwards, while an upcoming Han Solo origin film will be directed by Christopher Miller and Phil Lord. Josh Trank was set to direct an untitled “Star Wars” standalone film before exiting the project in June.
Kennedy also hit on the declining number of women in positions of power in Hollywood.
“In a weird way, a few years ago there were more,” Kennedy noted. “The numbers never climb significantly but more women were running studios than there are today.”
The Lucasfilm President said that while there were “complicated” reasons for the lack of female execs and content creators, there needs to be more focus on nurturing talent.
“It’s a lot to do with opportunity and there has to be a concerted effort to create the opportunity,” Kennedy said. “We need to not go to a filmmaker who’s done one movie and expect them to come in and do something the size of ‘Star Wars’ without having an opportunity to find other movies they can do along the way.”
Although the plot of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” has remained a closely-guarded secret, Kennedy did reveal that new female character Rey, played by Daisy Ridley, is “extremely significant” to the story.
Rey’s place in the movie has already been the point of much speculation with many believing her to be the child of either Luke or Leia Skywalker — or at the very least a force-sensitive person.
Kennedy also revealed that six out of eight of the people involved in developing the film were women and that 50% of her executive team is female.
“Having a balance of men and women in the room changes the story,” she said. “The dialogue, the point of view.”
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” hits theaters on Dec. 18.