Rumor: A look at Maz Kanata? Indie Revolver has concept art of what they claim is Lupita Nyong’o’s character in The Force Awakens. Per usual (especially with concept art) it’s a big maybe, and may not be exact, particularly if one believes that Maz is the person handing over the lightsaber in the second trailer.
How much of The Force Awakens is George Lucas? Well, per the Vanity Fair article (much of which still isn’t online, which means you’re going to be reading dozens of interpretations until it is) the answer is: Not a lot. I’m off to see if I can find a copy…
Today, Vanity Fair has their J.J. Abrams interview, where The Force Awakens director talks about not overexplaining things, his weirdest moment, and capturing the tone of Star Wars. Also, a horrible Max von Sydow pun.
Now, what sparked a lot of discussion today was this bit:
Well, what’s cool is we’ve obviously had a lot of time [during the development process] to talk about what’s happened outside of the borders of the story that you’re seeing. So there are, of course, references to things, and some are very oblique so that hopefully the audience can infer what the characters are referring to. We used to have more references to things that we pulled out because they almost felt like they were trying too hard to allude to something. I think that the key is—and whether we’ve accomplished that or not is, of course, up to the audience—but the key is that references be essential so that you don’t reference a lot of things that feel like, oh, we’re laying pipe for, you know, an animated series or further movies. It should feel like things are being referenced for a reason.
Earlier, they talks about how A New Hope just dropped in references to things like the Clone Wars, and as someone who’s experienced great anvil fatigue over the past decades, I greatly appreciate a return to that, whether it be random whatevers that happened between trilogies or old stuff we already know.
And now, the actual Vanity Fair photoshoot is up –
with one more photo set to go out in their email newsletter. We do get a name for Lupita Nyong’o’s CGI character: Maz Kanata, a pirate who has a castle populated with a variety of riffraff. We also get a nice shot of Oscar Isaac and his X-Wing, Rey (and J.J. Abrams) on Jakku and Abrams with Kathleen Kennedy, John Williams and Lawrence Kasdan.
UPDATE: And the last photo has been spotted. Gwendoline Christie is confirmed as Captain Phasma, the chrome stormtrooper. You can read most of the article at VF as well, plus the prequel spreads are back up!
A little bit of Vanity Fair’s cover story on The Force Awakens went up at midnight – along with a behind-the-scenes video that gives us a peek at what some of the pictures may be – including a helmetless Kylo Ren (Yes, he’s Adam Driver. Shocking!)
There’s also a bigger version of the cover, but no more pictures – yet. One is set to go out in VF’s email newsletter tomorrow afternoon, though. And head below the cut for a few screenshots from the video.
The issue will be available digitally on May 7, and on newsstands May 12.
There’s still content from Celebration dropping, as Carrie Fisher talks to James Arnold Taylor backstage about Leia, the slave outfit, reprising Leia, and poor Gary’s exhaustion. Also joining James backstage are Ian McDiarmid and Anthony Daniels.
Plus there’s the Pablo Hidalgo and Leland Chee interview from the livestream.
Backstage at Celebration, Mark Hamill chats with James Arnold Taylor about Star Wars and shared some family photos from the Return of the Jedi set. (The Force Awakens stuff starts at 7:20. #Beardwatch!)
A bunch of other Celebration videos have gone up over the past few days as well, most pulls from the livestream, including interviews with Billy Dee Williams, Ray Park, Joel Aron, Doug Chiang and Christian Alzmann, among others. And then there’s con highlights that played during the Closing Ceremonies…
Wall Street analysts estimate that The Force Awakens will make $1.75 billion. Previous predictions have ranged from $1.2B to $2B.
The 2015 Hallmark Dream Book is out, and it contains some – but not all – of the Star Wars ornaments we saw at SDCC. Curiously, there are two The Force Awakens ornaments that are yet to be revealed. Odds are probably good that one is a BB-8, but the other?
UPDATE: Jedi News found out that the Admiral Ackbar we saw at SDCC will be a limited release for Hallmark’s Ornament Premiere on July 11. It will only be available in stores.
Head beneath the cut for a shot of the Dream Book’s Star Wars page.
The latest Entertainment Weekly has a spread on The Force Awakens. You can read the print article here, but they’ve also been posting expanded interviews with some of the cast.
So far we have Carrie Fisher, who called herself “the custodian of Leia” and reveals that her part in one of the sequel drafts “wasn’t what I thought Leia should be.” Then Daisy Ridley, in what may be her first major Star Wars interview. And today, we heard from John Boyega.
No Oscar Isaac yet, but he did do a nice interview with IGN where he revealed some of the research he did for the part.