Domhnall Gleeson: General Hux is “merciless”


In a new interview with Total Film (via gamesradar,) Domhnall Gleeson says that J.J. Abrams described General Hux as “merciless” – or did he?

“Yeah, I mean you look at him and you realise he’s not a good guy! He’s got an English accent so he can’t be good.” He said. Gleeson went on to add that Abrams described Hux as “merciless”, before getting worried he was giving too much away, “Is that what he said?”.

You might think that the chance to be a part of the new Star Wars film would be a dream come true, but although Gleeson is definitely excited, he explained that’s not why he took the part. “Yeah, it’s fun to do different things. I hadn’t played anybody like that before. Star Wars is amazing, J.J. Abrams is amazing, but the thing to do was play something different. That’s what got me really excited.”

The full interview will be in Total Film’s November issue, which is supposedly on sale now.

The Force Awakens books: Wave 2 officially announced

tfa-before-crop has the word on some of The Force Awakens books that’ll be released with the movie on December 18th (in addition to The Art of, which we heard about last week.) It’s mostly kid stuff, but there is DK’s standard Visual Dictionary for the movie, and a book from Greg Rucka called Before the Awakening:

A companion piece to the Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens character novels, Star Wars: Before the Awakening is an anthology book that focuses on the lives of Rey, Finn, and Poe before the events of the Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

The novelization(s) of the film are both under “still to come,” so no cover reveals there just yet, but we know the eBook for Alan Dean Foster’s version will be out the 18th, with the hardcover dropping January 5.

Disneyland’s Seasons of the Force begins November 16

launchbayThe Disney Parks blog has announced the starting date for Seasons of the Force at Disneyland: November 16. Star Tours will get a new scene inspired by The Force Awakens (probably Jakku) and the Star Wars Launch Bay will open. This will also see the limited-time reskinning of Space Mountain as Hyperspace Mountain and a new version of Jedi Training that will incorporate Rebels characters.

There will also be “an opportunity to revisit favorite scenes from classic Star Wars films,” which sounds like there’ll be no special The Force Awakens preview at at Tomorrowland Theater.

Details for the version at Disney World’s Hollywood Studios in Orlando are forthcoming, but I expect most of this (except Hyperspace Mountain) will be doubled there.

The Force Awakens: Tour Jakku with a new 360 video

tfa-jakku360 debuted a 360 video – itself a brand-new feature – on Facebook this afternoon, letting fans ‘ride’ Rey’s speeder through a part of Jakku. This is the second time that The Force Awakens has been an active participant in introducing a new feature on a social media site. Last time was Instagram (which is owned by Facebook) and their new widescreen option.

→ Per a new survey, The Force Awakens and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 are not just the most-anticipated releases of late 2015, but the most-anticipated fall/winter movies in the five years this specific survey has been done.

→ In a new interview with GQ Style, John Boyega says he cried when he read the script. He’s on one of the three covers of the latest issue.

Reviews of the Original Trilogy retellings: thumbs up!

So You Want to Be a JediOver at, I’ve got reviews of this week’s new books for younger readers from Disney Lucasfilm Press. All three are great reads, taking the original trilogy films and telling them from new perspectives.

A New Hope: The Princess, the Scoundrel, and the Farm Boy by Alexandra Bracken is told in three parts, each from a different point of view as the three heroes recognize the simple labels they’ve got, and grow past them. Lots of great Leia stuff in the first third (including extra scenes), and Wedge makes a good appearance in the Luke section at the end.

The Empire Strikes Back: So You Want to Be a Jedi? by Adam Gidwitz put the reader square into the action by putting them in the role of Luke Skywalker. Great getting into Luke’s thoughts and emotions, plus lots of Jedi lessons at the end of each chapter to help readers become more mindful.

Return of the Jedi: Beware the Power of the Dark Side! by Tom Angleberger amps up the fun and excitement of Episode VI. More explosions, more sound effects, more Ewoks, and more funny footnotes! Plus witness the tragedies of Moff Jerjerrod and Romba!

Gwendoline Christie praises “informative” response to fan inquiry about Captain Phasma’s armor

phasmaIn a new Variety interview, Gwendoline Christie praised the Star Wars social media team for their response when a fan on Facebook questioned Captain Phasma’s armor:

“It was beautiful because it was informative, which is what we all need in order to tackle prejudice of any kind in our world … to be fed information,” Christie said of the measured response. “That’s just my opinion, that education combats fear, and fear leads to prejudice — so if we all become more educated, and if our mainstream media continues to expand and show a more realistic representation of women and of men.”

And this isn’t the first time that Christie has implied that we’re unlikely to see Phasma unmasked, but it’s certainly a double down:

“It was very important to J.J. that I was there acting a part,” she noted. “I found it to be a really interesting acting challenge, not just because of what I felt this character was representing — and it was just what I felt, and we talked about it a little bit, but it was never like a manifesto, ‘this is what it must be’ — and it was exciting to me to have that weight of responsibility taken away, of having to be a certain way as a woman, to have to be mindful in a way that isn’t always useful. To have that stripped away was very liberating, and it meant that as an actor I had to focus on other things. I had to focus on what my body was communicating and what exactly my voice is communicating.”

She added, “It becomes about the way in which you hold your hand, the way in which you walk, where your weight lies and what you want that to mean, and I wanted to give the character identity. I thought it was interesting to make something about the character identifiably female in a non-superficial way, and I hope that comes across.”

Star Wars and Game of Thrones may be getting the bulk of the attention at the moment, but we’ll see Christie first – and unmasked – this November in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2.