Ava, JJ*During an interview with Nerdist, “Star Wars” director/co-writer J.J. Abrams may have stunned many a fanboys when he shared his interest in having Ava DuVernay direct a future installment of the franchise.

“To me the knee-jerk reaction, if I had to, is Ava DuVernay, who I think would just kill it,” he said. “And she is as much a fan of genre movies, and hearing her talk not just ‘Star Wars’, but hearing her talk about those kinds of films is evidence that she would just kill it.”

Abrams credits DuVernay’s directorial work on “Selma” as a testament to her story-telling abilities.

“And when you look at her work in ‘Selma’, which was as well-told and as sophisticated and humane a film as I think has come out in the last decade, if she can do that story that well, there’s no question she would kill this movie.”

Abrams’ comments didn’t go unnoticed. DuVernay tweeted her response to his praise on Wednesday:

Check out more of J.J. Abrams interview in the clip here.

In related news, Steven Spielberg told CBS newsmag 60 Minutes that when producer Kathy Kennedy was looking for a director for “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” he had only one man in mind for the job, Abrams.

“Kathy, there’s only one director that really should undertake this daunting, epic task, and that’s J.J. Abrams,” Spielberg said.

CBS News’ Bill Whitaker interviews Abrams about the making of “Star Wars” for a 60 Minutes segment to be broadcast this Sunday at 7 PM. As Deadline notes, JJ tells Whitaker he couldn’t let his inner fanboy get in the way of making the epic.

“I had feelings of ‘Holy, what the … I can’t believe I’m here’ … constantly happening and I had to suppress that and say, ‘Yep, OK, let’s do it’ … because the job was not to be a wide-eyed fanboy. The job was to be director of the movie,” Abrams says.

The 60 Minutes special also finds the director capturing memorable moments working with one of his childhood idols, composer John Williams, who scores the film’s soundtrack.

“This is like, momentous … as a fan, I can’t even believe I got to be here,” says Abrams, who was 11 when he was first introduced to the magic that is “Star Wars.”

“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” opens December 18.