Star feud. Carrie Fisher and William Shatner are at it again: He gets choked, literally, but all’s well that ends well.
Rumors. Ali Arikan says that there are rumblings that Episode VII will begin filming on April 22.
Original original trilogy. Jeremy Conrad at Furious Fanboys has four reasons we won’t be seeing the original trilogy theatrical cuts released anytime soon. Long story short: A complete restoration would be super expensive and the rights issues with 20th Century Fox.
It’s December 18th, and you know what that means… Two years from now, Episode VII should be in theaters.
Here’s a helpful reminder of what we actually know so far: J.J. Abrams is directing, the script will be by him and Lawrence Kasdan, and we know several key crew members. (Including composer John Williams.) However, Artoo is the only confirmed cast member, and the only confirmed shooting location is Pinewood Studios in the U.K.
There have been no other casting announcements or posters released, no matter what you see around the internet – at least as of the time of this post! (If it’s not on StarWars.com, it’s a rumor or fan-made.) We probably can’t expect a title for at least a year – I guessed at a mid-2014 title announcement back when we assumed the film was coming out in May 2015, but at this point they could conceivably not tell us until the next Celebration in April 2015.
At a Variety event this morning, Disney’s Alan Horn said that they expect to get the Episode VII script in January and that the film will likely cost $200M. (Revenge of the Sith‘s production budget was $113M, per Box Office Mojo, but that was almost a decade ago.)
He also reiterated that we’ll be seeing Star Wars movies yearly, which has been the plan for a while now, but has been rumored to be in doubt.
As for Indy:
Graser is a reporter at Variety.
What with the Golden Globe blitz beginning (you go, Tatiana Maslany,) power hosts Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are guest-editing this week’s Entertainment Weekly – and naturally they’re taking on Star Wars. Sort of.
The comedians joke that they’re playing “really naggy mothers of Darth Vader.”
FEY: [In an elderly New Yorker accent] “Darth, eat! Why don’t you eat?” That kind of stuff.
POEHLER: “You’re never gonna find a girl when you go out looking like that!”
FEY: Making him practice his Jedi stuff for hours.
POEHLER: Hitting on all his Jedi friends inappropriately. I feel like the theme of the next Star Wars is going to be: How does a working mother juggle it all? I’m looking forward to that. What I like about all these giant superhero movies is that they speak to the issues that I’m dealing with right now — working mother and time management and how to be an interesting, sexual, curious woman in your 40s. That’s the kind of stuff that I like to see on the screen, and that’s what I see with a lot of the films out today.
Even J.J. Abrams is playing along: “The exciting thing about having Amy and Tina play the Vader Moms, as we’re calling them, is that they bring to the film that pitch-perfect Star Wars energy fans are clamoring for.”
Somewhere, someone is taking all this at face value. Let’s pretend we don’t see them.
Merchandising! Disney CFO Jay Rasulo spoke at an investor conference today and spoke of Lucasfilm following in Marvel’s footprints for distribution across different platforms – though he did say that they’re willing to look outside their own networks for distribution. Nothing earth shattering here – he also said that there’ll be more Star Wars rides coming to the parks over time – but it confirms that there’s plenty more in the pipeline than just new films. And, yes, expect the full merchandising blitz for Episode VII. Whatever could the sequel trilogy equivalent of a Jar Jar lollipop be, I wonder?
Rumors. Were the rumors of Benedict Cumberbatch in Star Wars just a smokescreen? The Daily Superhero has a source that claims that the rumors were manufactured by Disney as a cover… Because they actually want him for a Marvel role, perhaps Doctor Strange. Sounds pretty plausible to me – and what’s easier to play on than the internet’s unending ability for uninspired fancastings?
Bleeding Cool reports today that Jack O’Connell is a “real contender” for a role in Episode VII – close enough that he’s met with J.J. Abrams and the “meeting went very well.” They’re not sure which role he’s up for, though.
O’Connell is new to me, but he’ll be in next year’s 300: Rise of an Empire and has built up quite a resume over in the U.K., including a stint on Skins.
Social. Star Wars has officially joined Instagram. Will they drop something fresh soon? What social network will be next?
Mystery box. J.J. Abrams has admitted that keeping Khan ‘secret’ for Star Trek Into Darkness maybe wasn’t the best idea. Hopefully no outright lying for Episode VII? (Yeah, right.)
Derumored. Actress Emmanuelle Chriqui, who was named as an Episode VII contender by Jedi Master SQL last week, said on Twitter that she hasn’t auditioned (the convo started here.)
Disney Parks. TheForce.net has a source that disagrees with the earlier MiceChat report that Disneyland’s Star Wars plans were put on hold due to budget concerns. While there is a hold, they say that it’s due to Episode VII. “They didn’t want to build attractions/a land without including the new movies,” the source says. “So since the teams don’t have a final script they can’t add anything from the new movies.”
Rumors. In their latest Q&A, Jedi News and Jedi Master SQL discusses The Clone Wars and spin-off films. For Clone Wars he echos the earlier reports out of Poland, but adds that they will be “non-sequential episodes.” The iOS app may no longer be in the picture, but there will be an “online digital distribution model” that will include far more than just TV episodes (“films, books, comics, and online web content.”) As for the first standalone, he doesn’t see how they can get it out for 2016, but we may hear about the director and producer as early as next week. He’s also still stuck on Benedict Cumberbatch.
No. This doesn’t seem to have much traction yet aside from some random folks on Twitter and Tumblr, but beware folks using Cédric Delsaux’s ‘The Falcon’s Hiding Place’ as being the Episode VII Falcon. The original image (third from the right on the second to last row of Delsaux’s official gallery) was taken in Dubai in 2009.
Rumors. Jedi News continues their chat with Jedi Master SQL, this time addressing 3-D and the state of rumormongering.
Whatever. I’m not even sure where this originated, but apparently there are rumors that they may be ‘de-aging’ folks for Episode VII? Sounds more like something born out of speculation – and the early hopes for a Heir to the Empire adaption – than anything truly serious. I wouldn’t put use of digital de-aging techniques totally out of the equation (flashbacks/dreams/visions?) but I don’t put any stock in a whole movie full of it.
Big no. Yes, there are rumors, but no one has yet leaked pictures of the Episode VII Millennium Falcon. Like the one on our earlier post, the ‘leaked’ construction pictures are from The Empire Strikes Back. I mean, come on now. At least try, folks.
Jedi News’ Jedi Master SQL has emerged yet again for a lengthy Q&A about Episode VII. There’s a fair amount of speculation on his part, but here are the bullet points:
- Lucasfilm is sitting on “a stack of news that could be released at any moment that they please.”
- On returning actors, he’s “only seen evidence for one of [the Big 3] having signed,” and it “would not surprise me if they did not all come back for Episode VII but maybe came back at varying points in the new trilogy.” Last time we heard from him he said Harrison Ford’s deal was nearly in place.
- He says “the Expanded Universe won’t be disappearing anytime soon,” Dark Horse is likely to keep the comic license and “you can expect to see their logo on a lot of very different Star Wars products than just comics.”
- He hints “The Old Republic has added a planet that has long been mentioned but never seen on film,” and that has something to do with Episode VII. (UPDATE: Lightsaber Rattling thinks this may be Corellia, which will be familiar to EU fans but has never been seen on screen.)
- As for new actors, he says an “exceptional level of work going into finding the right cast for the new films.” Names he’s recently heard attached to roles are Emmanuelle Chriqui, Alexis Dziena, and American Horror Story’s Taissa Farmiga.
He also chatted about the next Celebration, saying that it may be the launchpad for the real Episode VII blitz.
So that’s a few things to chew on… but as always, just rumors!