Despite not being a huge fan, Star Wars is such a huge deal that it's impossible for me not to talk a lot about it on this blog, especially considering that Disney intends to make it into a huge franchise. When JJ Abrams was announced as the director, I just rolled my eyes along with a lot of other people. It's not that I dislike him (I've liked every movie of his that I've seen), but just that he has a style that has caused some particular problems. There's also the Mystery Box phenomenon that he's a little too in love with, all of this adding up to people generally rolling their eyes at him when he's involved in something. However, giving it a little more thought, I think he's actually the best choice for directing this movie.
I'd say that Abrams has a style best suited to TV, and that's where his most successful projects have been. Even though he was only involved in the pilot, LOST truly put him on the map because of a great pilot, and it's what really kickstarted his career (from my perspective, feel free to correct me if I'm wrong) to the point that he's on top of the world. The issue I've found is, despite liking his movies, they all feel incomplete, like the story truly hasn't been resolved. This makes me feel like he's so good at creating pilots (and TV episodes in general) that he's constantly making them, even in his movies. If viewed as the pilot episode to a longer series (or a season premiere), his Star Trek movies suddenly make a lot more sense (this doesn't explain the problem with Super 8, and I haven't seen MI3, so no comment there).
So, why is he perfect for Star Wars? The ending of Return of the Jedi really wrapped the main Skywalker story up nicely, but there are a number of possible directions it could go from there. The movie didn't give much indication that things were headed in any particular direction from there, and that's where Abrams comes in. He needs to set up something new, even though it's in a world we're already familiar with, and since it's going to be a huge franchise, there need to be a lot of unanswered questions and open ends. It needs to tell a complete story (it can't be the LOST pilot, which doesn't hold its own as a standalone story), but it's not like it's beyond his capability to do so.
All I know is that it's going to be very difficult to pull off right, and they seem to have chosen the right person to open up an old world to something new.