New “micro-short” series Forces of Destiny to highlight the women of Star Wars

Announced overnight, just ahead of the official opening of Celebration Orlando, is Forces of Destiny, a new series of animated shorts highlighting Rey, Jyn Erso, Sabine Wren, Leia Organa, Ahsoka Tano and more.


The series will launch in July on the Disney Youtube, with additional shorts debuting on the Disney Channel in the fall. Daisy Ridley, Felicity Jones, Tiya Sircar, Ashley Eckstein and Lupita Nyong’o (Maz Kanata) are among those returning to voice their characters.

The series will also have book and action figure tie-ins. We’ll learn more later Friday at the “Heroines of Star Wars” panel here in Orlando.

Lupita Nyong’o hasn’t shot for Episode VIII yet

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In an interview with Collider, Lupita Nyong’o said that she hadn’t yet shot for Episode VIII, which wrapped primary photography in the summer. “That’s in my future,” she said of working with VIII director Rian Johnson.

viii-rj-tumblr-040416wNyong’o was announced as part of the VIII cast when production began, and Johnson did share a picture of what appeared to be motion capture of her character, Maz Kanata – a test, perhaps? (Part of me wonders now if they swapped in Maz for another digital character who has yet to be revealed or finalized. Or maybe she’s just part of the standard demo?)

The most logical answer for when Nyong’o films for VIII would be the ubiquitous reshoots, which probably won’t happen until next year. In the meantime she has Queen of Katwe opening at the end of the month and Marvel’s Black Panther coming up for 2018.

Today in The Force Awakens: Maz Monday brings new Blu-ray clip, emoji

tfa-maz-cropLupita Nyong’o shared a new behind-the-scenes clip from the Blu-Ray for #MazMonday – there’s also now a Maz Kanata emoji in the Star Wars app

→ Harrison Ford’s Tumblr Q&A was about what you’d expect, but he did talk about the ending of the film and praise some of his costars. Read all his answers.

→ Daisy Ridley and John Boyega both won Empire awards this weekend, and then proceeded to be adorable with them.

→ The cover to Marvel’s The Force Awakens #1 is… Certainly a comic book cover.

Episode VIII begins production; Benicio Del Toro, Laura Dern, Kelly Marie Tran join cast

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StarWars.com has the official announcement that Episode VIII has begun production at Pinewood this morning. It adds officially adds three new actors: Benicio Del Toro, Laura Dern, and newcomer Kelly Marie Tran. (Entertainment Weekly takes a look at Tran’s previous work.)

Returning from The Force Awakens are Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, Gwendoline Christie, and Andy Serkis.

Video footage shows director Rian Johnson, Hamill and Ridley filming on Skellig Micheal in September, and a hint as to where VIII picks up…


…Or is it? Note that only one shot – Ridley holding out the saber – is actually a close duplicate to what we saw in The Force Awakens. While they may be keeping things less restrictive this time, let’s not put too much faith in what they’re willing to show us.

Meanwhile, as the day winds down…

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