Category Archives: sequel trilogy

Catching up with The Force Awakens: Big spoilers and set visits

spoilers-swirl-broadsaberIn today’s very spoiler-heavy report, Making Star Wars discusses the villains, what happens to them, and more evidence of a connection to some of the heroes. They also have some fan-made storyboards based on a previous report, and ‘the village people.’ Jason also has a few words on spoiler etiquette.

The Hollywood Reporter had an article last week about how Star Wars actors rarely become huge stars. Their point about “keeping yourself from any other franchises out there” seems to ignore that Oscar Isaac is going to play a pivotal role in the next X-Men movie, though, so take it as you will.

→ Simon Pegg talks about his Episode VII set visit with Collider, telling a sweet story about his daughter and BB-8.

The Force Awakens: John Williams to record score in L.A.

John WilliamsThe big news today is StarWars.com confirming that John Williams will be recording The Force Awakens score in Los Angeles, the first time a Star Wars score has been recorded in the U.S.

But I’ve been sitting on a few other things, so:

→ There was some scuttlebutt about how Oscar Isaac said he would be excited to work with Episode VIII director Rian Johnson, and (of course) the internet jumped on that as proof his character survives Episode VII. Now, I’d be very surprised if Poe Dameron kicks it that early, seeing as we suspect – with very heavy assistance from the trailer – that he’s one of the new Big 3. But for what it’s worth, /Film sought a clarification from him, and there’s your lesson in making hay out of Star Wars news for the week.

→ And now the rumors/spoilers: Making Star Wars had pieces on Kylo Ren and his connection to some earlier concept art, some stuff on Poe Dameron and Finn from early in the film, plus a look how things fit together from there. Then there’s some concept art of Ren and how it may connect to ‘Captain Phasma.’

Rumor: Who’s the frontrunner to direct Episode IX?

starwars-jjabramsAccording to (deep breath) Latino Review, J.J. Abrams may return to direct the final film of the new trilogy. Making Star Wars has a source saying the same thing.

There are also rumblings out and about that Francis Lawrence, who directed the last three Hunger Games movies, is in the running as well.

We’ve previously heard that Episode VIII director Rian Johnson would also script and perhaps direct the third installment as well, but this far out it’s hard to say in any case.

Journey to The Force Awakens: Aftermath cover, Wendig officially revealed

jtfa-aftermathEditor Jennifer Heddle introduces officially introduces Aftermath and author Chuck Wendig at StarWars.com today. She reveals for the first time that the book is first of a trilogy that “that begins to bridge the Star Wars timeline between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens:”

Obviously I wish I could tell you more about the story, but I can’t just yet. What I can reveal is that you will be introduced to a sweeping new cast of characters, along with a fan favorite from the films. And who knows what other familiar faces will pop up along the way? And once you’ve seen The Force Awakens in movie theaters, you may find that certain names and places in Aftermath have a relevance you never knew–so keep your eyes wide open!

Will Wendig write the next two books in this trilogy? (We have reason to suspect they won’t be coming before TFA… But who knows?) Hopefully we’ll find out soon. Aftermath is due out September 4.

Catching up with The Force Awakens: Oscar Isaac and Domhnall Gleeson (almost) talk Star Wars

Oscar Isaac and Domhnall Gleeson have been making the rounds at SXSW for that other sci-fi film they’re in, Ex Machina, and basically being adorable dorks.

At MTV, Gleeson “almost has a stroke” when the interviewer says ‘Poe Dameron,’ AND we learn how to pronounce ‘Domhnall,’ which will certainly come in handy. With E!, they talk about stepping onto set for the first time.

→ One Episode VII crew worker is putting up his special cast and crew gear to help raise funds for his daughter, Elise, who has been diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy. Care for Elise donations are accepted through Go Fund Me, and anyone who donates has a chance to win the gear.

→ Making Star Wars has a report on The Force Awakens editorial process, which is actually pretty safe for the spoiler-free among us. Just don’t click anywhere else, like their attempt at decoding the teaser shot-for-shot or this speculative piece on Poe Dameron’s X-wing.

Abrams and Kennedy will have ‘special guests’ at their Celebration panel

abrams-kennedy‘Special guests’ will be at J.J. Abrams and Kathleen Kennedy’s Thursday panel. I suspect they will be The Force Awakens folk of the younger generation. (Or, pretty much anyone who’s not Harrison Ford.)

Also added to the Celebration guest list today are Billy Dee Williams, Ashley Eckstein and more. The exhibitor list is live as well.

First Star Wars spinoff film is Rogue One; Rian Johnson (and MAY 2017) confirmed for Episode VIII

ro-headshotsStarWars.com confirms that the first standlone film will be called Rogue One.

Starring Felicity Jones, directed by Gareth Edwards and written by Chris Weitz, the story is based on an idea from John Knoll, who’s one of the executive producers. The film will shoot in London this summer and is due out December 16, 2016.

They’ve also (finally!) confirmed that Rian Johnson is writing and directing Episode VIII, which is set for May 26, 2017. A RETURN TO MAY!

Much of the personnel here we’ve already heard about, but the title Rogue One is our first detail that really points to what kind of film this will be. A female X-wing pilot? Bring it on.

How much does the galaxy know about Darth Vader in the new canon?

anh-vader-corridor

There are several issues with the old Expanded Universe that I was hopeful would be addressed in the new Star Wars canon, and chief among them is how much the general public knew about Darth Vader and his connection to the Skywalkers.

When the EU started in earnest in the early ’90s, Vader’s identity as Anakin Skywalker and his relation to Luke Skywalker and Leia Organa was still a secret: It’s actually a huge plot point throughout Timothy Zahn’s Thrawn trilogy. But as the EU, um, expanded, it became less and less so, until it was just public knowledge not only that Darth Vader was Anakin Skywalker, but that both Luke and Leia were his kids. It doesn’t seem like it was ever planned or addressed: It just happened, and the full implications were almost never addressed. Such were the early days of continuity. But with the old EU now set aside as Legends, how much does the galaxy actually know?

We might already have an answer.

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Journey to The Force Awakens is on, and it’s big

star-wars-craniodsgnOh boy.

Entertainment Weekly reports that Journey to Episode VII – of which we’ve already heard about in drips and drabbles – will in fact encompass 20 books and comics across the various publishers. (Including such things as ‘sticker books,’ so it’s not exactly the New Jedi Order all over again, thankfully.)

“The Force Awakens is an extraordinarily, heavily guarded storyline. To track it, a lot of top-secret meetings were happening up in San Francisco as we worked through this program,” says Andrew Sugerman, executive vice president of Disney Publishing Worldwide. The company is managing the release through its own imprints as well as at least seven outside companies, among them sci-fi publisher Del Rey, Dorling Kindersley, and Marvel Comics.

The only Del Rey book mentioned is Star Wars: Aftermath – no author is given, but it certainly sounds like something in the new gap years between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens. Marvel will put out at least two TFA prequel stories, including one from Threepio’s perspective.

The YA books – the one we’ve primarily heard about thus far, do get authors:

Cecil Castellucci (author of Tin Star) will write Moving Target, an adventure following Princess Leia; Jason Fry, who earlier wrote Darth Maul: Shadow Conspiracy, will be the author of The Weapon of a Jedi, about Luke Skywalker; Claudia Gray, author of the Evernight series of fantasy books, will write a book titled Lost Stars; and Greg Rucka, a comic book scribe and writer of the Atticus Kodiak novels, will pen Smuggler’s Run, a Han Solo tale.

We knew about Claudia Gray, and Jason Fry is (so far) our only returning author. Now, we wait for more from Del Rey and Marvel… Cross your fingers.