This is rather surprising news. Lucasfilm have just announced Josh Trank as the director for another spinoff film. Trank previously directed Chronicle in 2012 and is currently filming the upcoming Fantastic Four movie (from a screenplay co-written by Simon Kinberg).
Here’s a 2012 interview with Trank where he name-checks Star Wars quite a bit:
So are they planning on pushing Episode VIII back to 2018, with a second spinoff landing in 2017 in the meantime? Why announce the director so soon? Is it because J.J. Abrams plans to direct Episode VIII but doesn’t want to go straight back into it without some breathing room in between?
And as for the rumour that the second spinoff will feature Han Solo, Kathleen Kennedy had this to say (emphasis added):
“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.”
How literally you take that statement is up to you.
Incidentally, Club Jade noted that Trank directed this Star Wars fan film in 2007 (which includes some NSFW language):