Team Hondo: This Is Madness begins!

team-hondo-2014Welcome to you! It’s your old pal, Hondo, and once again, the dashing folk at the official website have started up their This Is Madness bracket game again. And once again, Hondo Ohnaka, scourge of the space lanes, will reign supreme. Never mind that they show Yoda and Obi-Wan as past winners. It’s all lies, I tell you.

Watto has got some good tips on the competition. But don’t listen to that flying gasbag; let me tell you who to pick. Because if you do for Hondo, someday I might let you live instead of kicking you out of an airlock.

Anyway, the first match for the Light Side: Princess Leia vs Hera Syndulla. Both of them are those pesky Rebels you keep hearing about. But a princess and former senator? Ransoming her would bring more credits in. Then again, if I captured Hera, I’d probably also get her ship. And I could always use another good ship. Hera Syndulla.

On the Dark Side: General Grievous vs the Inquisitor. That four-armed cyborg once trashed my base. I’m still not over that. Pick the Inquisitor!

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.

Alexandre Desplat to score Rogue One

AlexandreDesplatComposer Alexandre Desplat (who just won an Oscar for The Grand Budapest Hotel) revealed during an interview that he will be scoring Rogue One, according to Film Music Reporter. He’ll be only the second composer to work on Star Wars live-action, after John Williams.

Desplat also scored Rogue One director Gareth Edward’s Godzilla.

Scoring isn’t something I tend to have strong opinions on, but I do think it’s a smart move for them to go off the beaten path for the spin-off films.

Catching up with Rogue One: Concept art, Mike Stackpole and looking back at the books

rogue_squadron800

We finally got name – and a hint at the content of – our first standalone Star Wars film this week: Rogue One. We still don’t know all that much about it, but there are a few hints out there, both official and speculative.

/Film has a description of the concept art that was shown to Disney shareholders for Rogue One that is supposedly reminiscent of video games, particularly Halo. No X-wings, but why would they go for a name that recalls Rogue Squadron, then? I don’t know, but I hope as we learn more things will become clear.

Mike Stackpole is, as you might expect, all for Rogues in a movie. At Barnes & Noble, Andrew Liptak looks at the Rogue Squadron books and comics – which, it should be noted, contained a fair amount of on-the-ground missions.

Journey to Episode VII: A new-to-Star-Wars writer is on Aftermath; Blurbs for YA novels

aftermathJedi Bibliothek was first to stop that the Random House online catalog ha slipped an author name onto Del Rey’s Aftermath – the very prolific Chuck Wendig, who expressed an interest in Star Wars last year on Twitter.

Jedi Bibliothek (in English) also spotted some blurbs for the YA components of Journey on Amazon.

Claudia Gray’s Lost Stars:

This thrilling Young Adult novel gives readers a macro view of some of the most important events in the Star Wars universe, from the rise of the Rebellion to the fall of the Empire. Readers will experience these major moments through the eyes of two childhood friends-Ciena Ree and Thane Kyrell-who have grown up to become an Imperial officer and a Rebel pilot. Now on opposite sides of the war, will these two star-crossed lovers reunite, or will duty tear them-and the galaxy-apart?


The Weapon of a Jedi
by Jason Fry:

Set between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back, the story finds Luke Skywalker, C-3PO, and R2-D2 stranded on a mysterious planet, and explores Luke’s first-ever duel with a lightsaber.

Cecil Castellucci’s Moving Target:

Set between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, the story follows the warrior princess as she leads a ragtag group of rebels on a dangerous mission against the evil Galactic Empire.

Greg Rucka’s Smuggler’s Run:

Set between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back, the story follows everyone’s favorite pair of smugglers as they fly the Millennium Falcon on a top-secret mission for the Rebellion.

All four promise “all-new post-Return of the Jedi content, as well as hints and clues” about The Force Awakens.

UPDATE: Our book release schedule has been updated!

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.