Corporate shenanigans.Jedi News spotted an interesting mention in a recent Variety story on Bob Iger and who might suceed him at Disney: “Many expect theme park and resorts chief Thomas Staggs to land the CEO role, although there are rumblings that Lucasfilm’s Kathleen Kennedy also may now be in the running.” Well, business isn’t exactly our division, but I suppose it wouldn’t be out of the question.
In other news, Kennedy and ILM have signed a “co-operation deal” with Chinese VFX company Base FX, both Variety and The Hollywood Reporter have reported. Hrm.
Another name in the hat?Jonathan Frakes (Star Trek: The Next Generation) wouldn’t mind jumping ship to Episode VII, Big Shiny Robot learned in a recent interview.
Randomly… Star Wars will be the first movie to be dubbed in Dine, the official language of the Navajo, KJZZ reports.
ClevverMovies talked to Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy at CinemaCon (where she was named Pioneer of the Year) and got a few tidbits about Episode VII (J.J. Abrams is only signed for one) and spin-offs.
Lucasfilm is “determining what those spin-offs are going to be right now.” and she expects they’ll get some great talent” to helm them.
Big Shiny Robot, for the record, takes her evasiveness on IMAX and 3D as an indirect ‘yes.’
Famously plain-spoken, she summarizes her pitch like this: “Please do Star Wars.” And she had cards to play. Not only was Oscar winner Michael Arndt (Little Miss Sunshine, Toy Story 3) writing the script, but Lawrence Kasdan, who wrote 1980’s The Empire Strikes Back and 1983’s Return of the Jedi, was on board to consult. Abrams “was flipping out when he found out that Michael and Larry were on the movie already,” says Kennedy.
Abrams tells THR, “I learned firsthand how incredible and persuasive she is.” Some — but not all — of his reservations were dispelled. “The thing about any pre-existing franchise — I’d sort of done that,” he says. “But when I met with Kathy, it was suddenly very tantalizing.”
Kennedy goes on to discuss Lincoln’s Oscar campaign and her partnership with director Steven Spielberg, including this cute tidbit of how George Lucas approached him about hiring her:
Lucas called to raise the issue during a dubbing session on Lincoln. “He actually asked for her hand in business,” says Spielberg. “I wasn’t going to stand in her way.”
We learn that she’s commited to Lucasfilm for 5 years, splitting time between San Francisco and Los Angeles, her start in the business, meeting husband Frank Marshall and more.
As for Lucas? Spielberg says he’s ready to stay retired:
Asked whether he believes Lucas can really keep his distance, Spielberg doesn’t hesitate. “I completely know he can do that,” he says. “He’s ready to start living without the burden and weight and responsibility of this huge corporate asset.”
In short, if you’re curious about Kennedy, this article is a good place to start!
We report rumors, yes. Do I believe them all? Of course not. Hell, in a previous round, I got so angry at people misusing the term ‘confirmed’ that I wrote a whole post about it. The internet is a crazy place and things spread like wildfire, but please, please please be smart about these things. The rumors aren’t going to be going away any time soon, no matter how hard you wish they would.
According to ComicBook.com, Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy told ABC News Radio that she’ll have something to announce in January. Kennedy didn’t go into specifics, but a director choice is the next logical step.
She did reveal one thing – with Michael Arndt writing the script now, further pre-production will likely begin in the spring.
I admit it – sometimes it’s hard not to be a snob about print. Yeah, I still love reading magazines, but when it comes to news? They’re slow. Still, looks like Star Wars fans owe Pablo Hidalgo and the Star Wars Insider crew a small debt for making sure that the sequel news actually got into the next possible issue, as Pablo reveals in his latest blog entry.
We were disappointed to find out that the Insider interview with George Lucas and Kathleen Kennedy was transcribed from the videos (4 of the 5 of which we’ve already seen,) but Pablo does reveal that the Insider version has some content that “will never make it into the web series.” (The fifth video – and last, reportably – will go online the 31st.)
As someone who’s generally pretty well informed on what’s going on with the franchise, I go back and forth on the Star Wars Insider.
I let my subscription lapse more than a year ago and pick up the issues at Barnes & Noble… And often forget to read them anyway. (Yes, it’s available digitally, and I’m not really much of a collector, but I think I have them all since issue #24.)
The magazine is hobbled by the same general issues as most of print media – it’s always, always going to be a day (actually a month, or several months) late when it comes to breaking news. That’s just the nature of the beast, but I figure the Insider isn’t really meant for folks like me, the fans who read dozens of news sites daily. It’s for the casual fans. There’s a fine line to walk to attract the hardcores without alienating the core audience – the short stories being perhaps the latest (successful?) attempt.