It's been an exciting week in the Star Wars universe. Firstly, official filming on the new movie got under way in Abu Dhabi, followed by J.J Abrams announcing how one lucky fan could win a role in Episode VII. Now, we're hearing that Godzilla director Gareth Edwards has signed on to direct the first of the planned Star Wars spin-off movies.

Star Wars

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Edwards will direct a script by Gary Whitta (Book of Eli) set for a release date of December 16, 2016. Due to the huge level of secrecy behind all new Star Wars projects, it is currently unclear which spin-off Edwards will tackle.

Discussion in Star Wars geekdom has focused on blunter bunter Boba Fett and Jedi master Yoda though there are also rumors of a potential Han Solo origins story as well as the untold adventures of Luke Skywalker.

More: Want to win a role in Star Wars Episode VII? Step right this way

"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 in a statement

In May, Disney head honcho Bob Iger stated his intention to green-light at least three spin-off movies that would be released between the main instalments. 

Star Wars Force for ChangeJj Abrams Announced The Star Wars Force for Change Campaign This Week

The Star Wars project is by far Edwards' biggest to date - even surpassing 'Godzilla', which has grossed hundreds of millions at the box office. His only other directorial credit is the $500k feature Monsters, which scored critical acclaim in 2010.

"Gareth's filmmaking talent makes him one of his generation's most creative and visionary directors," said Legendary Entertainment's chairman and CEO Thomas Tull in a statement, probably getting worried that Disney were stealing their top man, "The plan has always been for Gareth to direct a different film before we started on another Godzilla, but who knew it would a Star Wars installment? We have a great plan in store for Godzilla fans and I am looking forward to seeing Gareth's imprint on the Star Wars universe."

JJ Abrams' Star Wars Episode VII, starring Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver and John Boega, hits theaters on December 18, 2105.  

More: Disney planning "at least three" Star Wars spin-offs