Report: Chris Weitz is the new writer for Spinoff #1

rumors-swirl-sw-yavinChris Weitz is the new writer for Gareth Edwards’ Star Wars spinoff, The Hollywood Reporter says today. Weitz’s writing credits include About a Boy and Disney’s upcoming Cinderella. THR was the first to report that Gary Whitta had left after completing the first draft of the film.

The Weitz news comes despite reports from /Film and Cinelinx that Simon Kinberg would take over.

The first spin-off, which we recently heard was testing actresses Tatiana Maslany and the Mara sisters, is expected to begin filming at Pinewood in the spring for a December 2016 release.

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.