Rumors: The Force Awakens locations, speeders and more

rumors-swirl-tatooineThe Force Awakens rumor masters at Making Star Wars has had a busy couple of days. They’ve explored the code names for some of the sets/settings and debuted a couple new speeder designs. Plus a location, something inspired by Moebius and some extras.

As for the other rumormongers, Latino Review really wants to make that old thing about the first spinoff being a Han/Boba movie happen. Turns out, bringing in Fett is totally the key to making the whole Tatiana Maslany thing way less exciting for me. (Intellectually, I know this does not mean that’s actually the case, but such is the killing power of Fett fanboy-bait for me. And yes, EU fans, I know what you’re thinking too, and I have no desire to go there either. The sooner we get something official on this movie, the better.)

Overall though, we’re really in something of a lull – or at least it feels like a lull. Fingers crossed we get something soon, even if it’s just another trade report.

Report: Tatiana Maslany, Rooney Mara testing for Star Wars spinoff

Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black)We’re months away from filming and there have been zero casting rumors regarding Gareth Edwards’ Star Wars spin-off, but that changed this evening. The Hollywood Reporter says that Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black) and Rooney Mara (David Fincher ‘s Girl With the Dragon Tattoo) are among those testing for a role.

Felicity Jones, who’s been hitting the Oscar circuit for The Theory of Everything, is also in the mix. UPDATE: As is Rooney’s sister, Kate Mara, per Variety’s Justin Kroll.

In any case, it’s pretty heartening that the first casting we hear for the spin-off is a woman – and Maslany especially is an exciting option that’s already giving this rumor a lot of buzz. (No matter which way this goes, you should really be watching Orphan Black.)

Making Star Wars has a bit more on the spin-off this evening, including that it may shot partly in Mexico and a few other (potentially spoilerly, though only broadly) bits.

Today in The Force Awakens: How much of George Lucas’ outlines are in the sequels? Not a lot, he claims.

glToday’s The Force Awakens controversy, or whatever you would like to call it: In a Strange Magic interview, George Lucas says that the version of the sequel trilogy that we’re getting are not the ones he wrote. Or, to be precise, per Cinema Blend:

The ones that I sold to Disney, they came up to the decision that they didn’t really want to do those. So they made up their own. So it’s not the ones that I originally wrote.

As with anything involving Star Wars and George Lucas, the reactions have been mixed. Bryan at Big Shiny Robot breaks out a Simon Kinberg quote where he maintains that George’s blueprint is still very much a part of the development, and points out that changes have been a part of all the Star Wars films.

Either way, I have a hard time getting upset. Even without Kinberg weighing in, it’s pretty clear that nothing in this franchise ever truly gets thrown out. To paraphrase Eleven-ThirtyEight, every bit of the buffalo gets used. And we’ve seen over the years that it’s just as possible to do a good Star Wars story without George Lucas as it is to do an unsatisfactory one with him. But the internet’s gotta internet, so I expect we’ll be hearing plenty from all sides of the issue before the week is out.

→ In other news, add a new name (and woman!) to the cast list: Leanne Best of Woman In Black 2: Angel Of Death.

→ Shocking no one, LEGO confirms they will be making sets for The Force Awakens. The surprise is that they’re actually showing them off at the UK Toy Fair – along with a non-disclose agreement. But we can see the nifty tote bag that Jedi News got.

/Film maintains that we won’t be seeing the classic heroes in the second trailer, despite the Latino Review report.