Disney CFO Jay Rasulo talked a bit about Star Wars at an investor conference today, and the biggest revelation for us is that he called the spinoffs “origin story films,” according to Variety’s Marc Graser. That’s in line with some of the rumors we’ve heard about Han Solo and Yoda, and while part of me hopes that Attack of the Clones disqualifies Boba Fett, somehow I suspect not. Still, it does imply an extended focus on characters outside of the Skywalkers.
Rasulo also called Star Wars an “evergreen property” and said there are plans to expand licensing programs, though the focus is “to put out a great film.” But Disney has faith in the franchise: “Of all our worries, ‘Star Wars’ is not one of them.”
The blogside. It’s a hot button issue in many fandoms right now – just ask anyone hanging around Game of Thrones lately – and Bria at Tosche Station explains on why it’s important to have diversity in Star Wars.
Oh, Carrie! Carrie Fisher shares some ideas for Episode VII. They are very… Carrie.
Who wants in now? Star Wars alumni Warwick Davis, Samuel L. Jackson and Ray Park. Spinoffs for everyone?
Disney business. Bob Iger will remain at the helm of Disney through at least 2016. And with The Lone Ranger’s opening-weekend belly flop, Disney has plenty of reasons to be thankful for their recent acquisitions. One expert expects Disney to net about $733M for 2015′s Episode VII alone.
JoBlo has a source who told them that the first two spin-offs will feature popular rumor subjects Han Solo and Boba Fett. No details on Boba, but the Han film “will focus on Han and Chewy’s [sic] relationship, potentially on how they met and became partners on the Millennium Falcon.”
Both movies have been rumored for a while now, though JoBlo also says that the idea for a Yoda film has been dropped due to LEGO’s The Yoda Chronicles.
A Boba Fett movie is, of course, inevitable, and either Daniel Logan or Temuera Morrison could return for the role, depending on where in the timeline the story falls. Casting a young Han Solo would be significantly more of a challenge… But no doubt there are plenty of actors willing to try.
Their source also claims that the Rebels cartoon will “focus on how the rebel alliance was formed,” which doesn’t give us too much of a hint of where it fits in the intertrilogy timeline. Sure, we saw the political roots of the Rebellion begin in the cut scenes of Revenge of the Sith, but parts of the Expanded Universe imply that the Rebellion we meet in A New Hope was formed by coalition of groups working against the Empire. Not that the EU material guarantees anything, but it’s an idea with plenty of story potential to be mined.
Prequel concept artists Doug Chiang and Iain McCaig are working on the ‘exciting new future for Star Wars,’ StarWars.com announced earlier this week. It’s not clear if they’ll be working on Episode VII, standalone films, neither or both.
They’ll be attending Celebration Europe next month.
Chiang was design director for The Phantom Menace and concept design supervisor for Attack of the Clones. McCaig, who designed Darth Maul, was one of the principal designers throughout the prequels.
Chiang and McCaig are the first major behind-the-scenes Star Wars veterans to be announced as returning for future films, aside from screenwriter Laurence Kasdan (doing a spinoff) and George Lucas as creative consultant on Episode VII.
Like these movies won’t be hits? As the Star Trek Into Darkness junket clips stagger out into the world, Abrams implies to MTV that the Star Wars spinoffs will depend on Episode VII going the distance.
Also from MTV: Damon Lindelof on Abrams and Star Wars, and they even asked Leonardo DiCaprio if he’d like to do future Star Wars. (He famously turned down Attack of the Clones back in the day.)
On that note… Simon Pegg talks about Abrams and Star Wars with Totalfilm – though he clarifies that he has no inside info from Abrams. And yes, they’re still asking random movie folks about Episode VII.
Interview. And finally, for someone who will almost certainly actually be in Episode VII, here’s more from Mark Hamill.
Hero Compex has an interview with Simon Kinberg, the Mr. & Mrs. Smith writer who’s penning one of the first two Star Wars standalone films as well as acting as a consultant on Episode VII.
It’s still too early for him to drop any news bombs on us (and he eludes the obligatory EU question) but he does talk at length about how the characters are what drives the films – and we learn that his favorite character is Han Solo, who has been rumored to be a possible subject for one of the spin-offs.
ClevverMovies talked to Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy at CinemaCon (where she was named Pioneer of the Year) and got a few tidbits about Episode VII (J.J. Abrams is only signed for one) and spin-offs.
Lucasfilm is “determining what those spin-offs are going to be right now.” and she expects they’ll get some great talent” to helm them.
Big Shiny Robot, for the record, takes her evasiveness on IMAX and 3D as an indirect ‘yes.’
At CinemaCon in Las Vegas, /Film reports that Disney has said that they hopes to have a new Star Wars once every year, beginning with Episode VII.
Variety reports that they reiterated that the new Episodes will be released in 2015, 2017 and 2019, with standalones presumable aiming for ’16 and ’18.
This lines up with what we’ve all been assuming based on various comments during the acquisition, including CEO Bob Iger’s earlier statement confirming the standalone films. More worrying is the timeline: Standalones alternating with Episodes? I’m not so sure I like the idea of a new Episode every other year.
On the other hand, consider the audience: CinemaCon is a convention for theater owners, who’ll naturally want to hear about a regular slate of new Star Wars releases. The reality of film production may be another matter entirely… So we’ll see.
Cosmic Book News is at it again! Today they’ve set on another spin-off concept, one featuring Obi-Wan during his Tatooine exile with old buddy Darth Maul and a possible appearance by a young Luke Skywalker. (via)
A similar story was published in 2005 as the lead story of Star Wars: Visionaries. But as story concepts go, we’ve heard worse, and Ewan McGregor hasn’t been shy about his willingness to return. But, as always, it’s only a rumor.
SciFiNow talked to Ian McDiarmid on his Star Wars character. He talks about Palpatine’s spinoff potential and even calls the Darth Palgueis novel ‘fascinating.’
But the highlight is perhaps his own thoughts on the character, and the possibilities going forward:
“I thought Sith were just somehow born evil, that’s what they were. But I’ve… with reference to a few things that George has said, I realised that that’s not true. He might well have a tragic arc too, but I don’t know. And even if he does I’m not sure we’ll ever see it. But obviously, if we did and if it happened it would be something that would be completely fascinating to do and it would be like building a Shakespearean character.
“Also the great thing about these movies is that George doesn’t give much away in advance to anybody,” McDiarmid continues, “which is good because that’s what a good storyteller should do, you should really want to know what’s going to happen next or how it all started.”
“And that’s all there in George’s head, and he’s released it, I suppose, in one way or another over the last few years. And although, of course, Disney now owns the franchise, George is there very much as a creative consultant and I’m sure they’ll be very grateful for that. And those storylines will still continue to emerge from that sort of databank, that extraordinary databank which is his brain.
For all the squee over Plagueis, I never really felt that it revealed much about Palpatine’s own motivation: The character himself is still very much a mystery, and I can how exploring that could be more fruitful with all the EU’s restraints removed. But somehow, I doubt that spinoff is very high on the list…