The Force Awakens news slim on the ground at D23 panel, but there Is a poster!

poster2-struzan-d23-crop

The big Star Wars movie news out of D23 may be Colin Trevorrow and Rogue One, but that doesn’t mean there wasn’t anything about The Force Awakens There was an exclusive poster given out featuring Drew Struzan artwork – it’s not the final theatrical poster, but it’s certainly something.

I doubt they’d hire Struzan just for a con exclusive, though, so I expect this is only a portion – or a remix – of the real thing.

We also have the return of Daisy Ridley to social media – Instagram, this time.

Present on the D23 stage were Oscar Isaac, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Lupita Nyong’o and Harrison Ford. And J.J. Abrams may have said that The Force Awakens is currently 124 minutes long… D23 being D23, and Star Wars being only a small part of the panel, so we heard a bit more out of the press room.

Head under the cut to see the full poster, direct from Struzan himself!

Continue reading “The Force Awakens news slim on the ground at D23 panel, but there Is a poster!”

D23 Expo begins: George Lucas becomes a Disney Legend


Disney’s own convention, D23 Expo, began today in Anaheim, and George Lucas was inducted as an official Disney Legend. (Bonus: Be sure to check your Star Wars app for a George emoji.)

Of course, The Force Awakens has a sizable presence on the con floor, where the highlight may very well be Captain Phasma’s armor.

At least she is today: We can certainly expect something from the live-action panel tomorrow. Our own Mandy will be there! legend

Lucasfilm launches fan art contest; Don’t expect any new The Force Awakens footage at D23

artawakensIn official official news, Lucasfilm has teamed with HP for a fan art competition, Art Awakens. Tumblr has been training for this!

→ With Entertainment Weekly, J.J. Abrams reiterated that we won’t get a new The Force Awakens trailer at D23, or at all until fall. There’ll be no TFA footage at all, “behind the scenes or otherwise,” he said. Of course, that doesn’t mean we won’t get something, like another character reveal or a new poster. (Not to mention things regarding the Parks…) And I’d bet actual money is still that we’ll get something for Rogue One.

The Force Awakens scoring sessions are “beyond anything I have experienced musically in my life,” a source tells the John Williams Fan Network.

→ More juice for the theory/hope that Episode VIII will return to film on Skellig Michael at The Star.

→ I won’t be tracking every TFA merchandise leak this month, but here are a few interesting ones: A Micro Machines Millennium Falcon playset, Black Series Finn, Chewbacca and < href="https://twitter.com/Sompeetalay/status/630494610574458880">Kylo Ren and Funko Pop Vinyl figures. My favorite, though, is a lunch bag with some new-to-us Captain Phasma art, which I love because even though she is 100% in armor, the way she’s standing is badass yet makes it absolutely clear that the character is a woman. Men don’t stand like that!

The Force Awakens roundup: Boyega’s topical jogging gear, Weekends merch features new trooper

john_boyega: Leaving the ultra nerd house for a nerd run. #Troophoodie
john_boyega: Leaving the ultra nerd house for a nerd run. #Troophoodie
John Boyega jogs in a stormtrooper hoodie. Stars: They’re just like us. Also, you can get a glimpse of the stormtrooper figure he got Harrison Ford (and it looks like a few others) to sign.

Star Wars Weekends are revving up at Disney World in Orlando, and there’s an Episode VII tee on sale there that actually features the new stormtrooper. It comes in men’s, women’s and kid’s sizes.

→ Rumor corner: What is the green planet? (I have some doubts, due mainly to a certain actor’s flippancy with something else that recently came up, but spoilers. Sigh.) On that note, it appears that TFA’s water scenes may have been filmed in England’s Lake District National Park.

→ Lucasfilm movies will be featured at D23 Expo this year. This obviously isn’t a surprise, and clearly The Force Awakens will be the priority, but it may be the first chance for something to go wide on Rogue One – though D23 is only two weeks after Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation drops on July 31, which could still be cutting it a bit close.

Marvel is not Star Wars – and vice versa

Vader vs. Captain AmericaSo the spate of summer cons where Lucasfilm might announce news related to Episode VII has come and gone, and we’ve gotten some announcements, but nothing mind-blowing. As Dunc said earlier this week, let’s not lose our heads over it. Is it frustrating that Celebration Europe’s big reveal was John Williams, and nothing much came from D23 Expo? Perhaps. Especially when compared to the glut of Marvel movie news that came out at Comic-Con and appearances made at D23. But as film franchises go, Marvel is not Star Wars. And Star Wars is not Marvel.

Continue reading “Marvel is not Star Wars – and vice versa”

When we can expect an Episode VII title announcement and other con season fallout

Steve Sansweet reveals Revenge of the Sith at SDCC '04
Steve Sansweet reveals the Revenge of the Sith title via t-shirt at SDCC ’04.

For those of us who remember the prequel era, perhaps the most puzzling part of fan speculation about Episode VII reveals has been the assumption that a title would be offered this early in the process. Mike Ryan at The Huffington Post has a nice look at Star Wars title announcements – and wonder no more why none of us veterans* are expecting to see a full title before mid-2014.

* I use the term loosely. Look how shitty this post is. I didn’t even use the title. Bad baby blogger.

A few more pieces emerged yesterday about fan expectations in the wake of D23. Germain Lussier at Slashfilm points out in his (occasionally eye-roll worthy) piece on the backlash, part of the issue is that the landscape of movie announcements has changed drastically over the years. Most pointedly, Marvel is giving fans their titles, characters and other tidbits long before they begin filming. On the other hand, Scott Mendelson thinks that Marvel and others actually reveal far too much about their films before they’re out. And even Harrison Ford has spoken out on the trend, saying that if Star Wars and Raiders of the Lost Ark came out today they “would be no fun at all.”

We’re in a holding period for Episode VII right now. We have some varied answers from folks at the top, but with the notoriously secretive J.J. Abrams at the helm we can probably safely predict they won’t be nearly as forthcoming as the Marvel folks. And maybe that’s a good thing. (Or are they just driving us on?) It’s a whole new landscape, and even Lucasfilm is still figuring it out. So again: patience.

Let’s not lose our heads over the lack of Episode VII news this summer

Don't lose your head!

For all intents and purposes, convention season is now over for Star Wars fans. At least, con season in the sense of expecting big announcements.

In all honesty, it’s a bit of a relief. There are no more obvious ‘deadlines.’ News could break at any time, and it probably will. But I fully expect that John Williams returning will remain the biggest officially sanctioned news of the summer… And let’s not forget the rumors will only get bigger from here – just look at the Ian McDiarmid one we got last night.

Is it frustrating that we didn’t get any further announcements at Celebration Europe and D23? Yes, of course. But as Bleeding Cool points out, they don’t owe us anything at this point. They’ll tell us something when they’re ready to tell us something, and not a moment before. As Pablo Hidalgo said in our comments yesterday:

There are no casting ‘secrets’. If someone hasn’t been signed, they haven’t been cast. That’s what triggers an announcement. That’s why everyone who has been announced has been announced when they were.

That’s why these things emerge as ‘rumors’ first – because Lucasfilm can’t say anything until the ink is dry. So the rumors aren’t going away, and yes, some of them will be complete bullshit because that’s the way the game is played. That’s our lot, if we’re going to be following the films this closely.

I know this is a fandom of mighty whiners, but can we please, please, please just learn already to be patient for official news and confirmations? We have years of this roller coaster ahead of us, and the hand-wringing act is already getting old. I pretty much guarantee you that the folks in charge know far more about making a film than any of us do; We don’t need to ‘worry’ about them under the guise of wanting things revealed.

It’s not wrong to want things; we all want official casting confirmations. We’ve all got carried away at one point or another. Everyone in geek media is starved for more: Actors simply saying that they’d like to be in Episode VII regularly make headlines; last night’s Ian McDiarmid rumor is making the rounds today. But we have to stop demanding. Lucasfilm and Disney owe us a movie sometime in 2015 and that’s about it. I assure you they want this thing made just as much as we want to see it, and when the time comes to promote it, they will do so. But it’s not quite that time yet, so: Patience.

It’s still early, after all, and I’m sure we’ll get yet another rumor – crazy or not – before the end of the month in any case.