Chris Weitz is the new writer for Gareth Edwards’ Star Wars spinoff, The Hollywood Reporter says today. Weitz’s writing credits include About a Boy and Disney’s upcoming Cinderella. THR was the first to report that Gary Whitta had left after completing the first draft of the film.
The Weitz news comes despite reports from /Film and Cinelinx that Simon Kinberg would take over.
The first spin-off, which we recently heard was testing actresses Tatiana Maslany and the Mara sisters, is expected to begin filming at Pinewood in the spring for a December 2016 release.
Ewan McGregor is “still waiting for the call” to reprise Obi-wan. Aww, he’s been hearing rumors. That’s cute. And he saw the trailer.
The Force Awakens rumor masters at Making Star Wars has had a busy couple of days. They’ve explored the code names for some of the sets/settings and debuted a couple new speeder designs. Plus a location, something inspired by Moebius and some extras.
As for the other rumormongers, Latino Review really wants to make that old thing about the first spinoff being a Han/Boba movie happen. Turns out, bringing in Fett is totally the key to making the whole Tatiana Maslany thing way less exciting for me. (Intellectually, I know this does not mean that’s actually the case, but such is the killing power of Fett fanboy-bait for me. And yes, EU fans, I know what you’re thinking too, and I have no desire to go there either. The sooner we get something official on this movie, the better.)
Overall though, we’re really in something of a lull – or at least it feels like a lull. Fingers crossed we get something soon, even if it’s just another trade report.
Cinelinx says they know why screenwriter Gary Whitta is off Gareth Edwards’ Star Wars film: Because, as many of us guessed, that’s exactly what he was hired to do. They also maintain that Simon Kinberg is coming on.
And, for the record, none of this is particularly unusual:
This isn’t a new thing, by any stretch of the imagination, as studios have long used this model to develop their films, bringing in writers to finish a script from the basic draft, and we hear about it all the time. The reason this seems like such a big deal is that it’s freaking STAR WARS, and people seemed to want to sensationalize the news.
Their source has also heard that Whitta’s script was too expensive for the film’s budget. (Budget? Star Wars? Well, yeah: It’s still a business, and if anyone is getting a blank check here it’s certainly not a standalone.) That’s likely to be one of the things that Kinberg deals with.
We know that Gary Whitta is done with his part on Gareth Edwards’ Star Wars spinoff, but could Simon Kinberg be stepping in? That’s what /Film has heard. Kinberg is already firmly entrenched in the franchise, and was even originally announced as the writer of an eventual standalone, though he hasn’t been officially attached to any of the films as of yet.
In other words, he’s the perfect person to tweak and polish Whitta’s script – perhaps that was the plan all along?
One of the earliest standalone rumors we heard was that a young Han Solo would be the focus of one. In the spirit of everything old being new again, Making Star Wars says that may indeed be the case – well, the Han part at least – and that filming may “eventually overlap” with Episode VIII. Also looking to be attached to the spin-off in some fashion, though not necessarily as Han Solo? Aaron Paul.
The previous Solo rumor fell out of favor after we heard Kathleen Kennedy say that spin-off characters wouldn’t be “in and out of the saga episodes.” That doesn’t necessarily preclude the films dealing with Saga characters before or between their Saga appearances, but in any case – plans can change.
Making Star Wars reports that a production office for Gareth Edwards’ Star Wars film will be moving into Pinewood soon. The latest James Bond film, Spectre, began filming earlier this month, and it’s expected that much of the crew will move back onto Star Wars when that’s done.
We still know little-to-nothing about the Edwards film, our first standalone. Solidly, we only know that it’s being written by Gary Whitta and has a release date of December 16, 2016. Cinematographer Greig Fraser has admitted to being on board.
Rumorwise, there’s a supposed plot and a code name, plus the usual litany of wish-listed character names like Boba Fett.
There has not been a single casting rumor, which seems pretty odd… Or maybe not. In any case, we’ll probably hear something by spring, just as we did when The Force Awakens began filming. Jason at MSW hopes we’ll get more details about this once things really get going, and I’d be happy just to not have to call it ‘Spin-off #1′ at some point.
→ There’s already a 3D-printable pattern of the soccer ball droid. It’s a 1:1 scale, but: Your move, Hasbro. (Has anyone checked on the R2 Builders? Are they okay?)
→ Tosche Station’s Nanci makes the case for unlearning what you’ve learned.
→ Hey, remember spoilers and concept art and all that jazz? Making Star Wars hasn’t: They have a description of an “exotic city” that may be related to one of the places we saw in the trailer.
→ On that note, did Star Wars Underworld reveal the code name for Gareth Edwards and Gary Whitta’s spin-off film?
→ I know we’ve heard all this before, but here’s Mark Hamill talking about George Lucas talking about the sequel trilogy in 1983.
Moving aside from the developing trailer madness, we have a report from /Film of the plot of the first spin-off from director Gareth Edwards and writer Gary Whitta. They claim it involves something we saw done multiple times in the old EU: The theft of the Death Star plans. Except this one involves bounty hunters and a character we might actually met in The Force Awakens first.
It’s not the kind of character-centric story we were expecting, but still sounds like something that will quite firmly fall into the ‘origin stories’ quote we have from Disney CFO Jay Rasulo. Thoughts?
It’s certainly not a surprise, but Pinewood CEO Ivan Dunleavy (via Variety) confirms that another Star Wars film will shoot at Pinewood. The Hollywood Reporter says this will be the mysterious spin-off from Gareth Edwards, which already has a December 2016 release date.
The BBC has video of Artoo’s appearance at the announcement. Reporter Lizo Mzimba also notes that per Pinewood’s website, The Force Awakened used their Exterior Tank.
We already know that Rian Johnson’s Episode VIII will film in London as well, and that there’s a ten-year deal in place with Pinewood so it won’t be the last.