Today in Episode 7 reports, we have the Los Angeles Times’ Steven Zeitchik and John Horn saying that “several different screenwriters paid visits to Lucasfilm’s Northern California compound to pitch George Lucas and his co-chair Kathleen Kennedy their ideas for the new live-action installment.” Their source went on to say “they were well-known screenwriters with experience creating big-budget Hollywood films,” and the stories were not adapted from existing Star Wars books. (via)
Their source is anonymous, but this does dovetail neatly with something Kennedy said in the video released Tuesday: “We’re sitting down with a couple of writers and we’re starting to discuss ideas; We’re starting to talk about what those stories might be.” I feel comfortable putting this one in the ‘fairly plausible’ column.
Well, this one will give some hope to the continuity-obsessed EU fans. Amid quite a bit of speculation, Nerdvana’s Dustin Diehl has a ‘Lucasfilm connection’ that claims Episode 7 will start “further out” than 50 years after the last film installment. They also told Diehl that a “a writer and director have already been selected.”
Diehl has quite a bit more faith than I that Disney and Lucasfilm will take the existing Expanded Universe – “equal parts respect and disinterest,” while I see only the second. Still, speculation is speculation, particularly at this point!
Get used to these rumor reports, folks! It’s only just begun. Today, we have Marketsaw. Their source has a lot to say about a lot of things, including the new movies, the old movies and live-action TV show, but here’s the bit about the sequel trilogy:
There are two trilogies planned, all following an original overview by Lucas, which was always planned as a multi generational saga. Movies 10 – 12 are from my understanding about the offspring of the Skywalkers, set many years later with the surviving cast playing much older versions of themselves and featuring a female protagonist named Skywalker. This is something that I understand is being discussed as the latest trilogy may end up being an amalgamation of the two using themes and ideas from both, but still keeping the general story, also allowing for continuity of cast.
As always, I recommend taking any unverified reports of this nature with a grain of salt! But I can say – have said – that I would love it if the new movies featured a female Skywalker front and center. Still, being a realist and having been an avid spectator through the worst of the prequel rumormongering, I can’t give these reports that much credence.
The Mary Sue, via Reddit, spotted this 1983 interview that Hamill did with Maria Shriver. He talks about Return of the Jedi sequels at 3:06. (2004!)
Entertainment Weekly caught up with Timothy Zahn to talk about the week’s big announcement and the amount of mainstream attention that the Thrawn trilogy has been getting due to all the speculation – and what he knew of possible plans for a trilogy after Return of the Jedi.
That means Zahn’s books won’t be directly adapted, but the author says that was always the case: “The books were always just the books.”
But years ago, he was briefed on Lucas’ plans for sequels, and how the Thrawn books would fit in. “The original idea as I understood it— and Lucas changes his mind off and on, so it may not be what he’s thinking right now – but it was going to be three generations. You’d have the original trilogy, then go back to Luke’s father and find out what happened to him [in the prequels], and if there was another 7th, 8th, or 9th film, it would be Luke’s children. The Thrawn Trilogy really would have fit into the gap,” the author said.
Tim talks – vaguely! – about what kind of things he’d like to see in the new films.
The Clone Wars. The Hollywood Reporter’s sources confirm that the cartoon will likely be making the move to Disney XD. Cartoon Network, which is owned by Turner/Time Warner, has the rights only up through current season. DisneyXD airs action-oriented shows and currently has a block dedicated to Marvel cartoons.
Episode 7 rumors. First Showing has a source denying the 1952 rumor, while Skywalking author Dale Pollock tells The Wrap that 7, 8 and 9 were the “most exciting stories.” And though there have been some rumblings from some hopeful to see Steven Spielberg finally take on a full Star Wars film, Spielberg fan Paul Bullock lays out some reasons why this is unlikely.
Ladies! Slate’s Alyssa Rosenberg on how women can save the Star Wars franchise. Like I said earlier, I would love a female protagonist heading this thing! It doesn’t even have to be someone we already know.
Reaction. Entertainment Weekly nabbed some big name Hollywood talent on how they feel about more Star Wars. Knights Archive has a nice collection of comments from Lucasfilm folks, authors, actors and other notables. MTV talked to TFN’s Eric Geller and Big Shiny Robot’s Bryan Young, while ABC News asked Devi Laskar, artist Tom Hodges, and yours truly. And our friends over the pond at Jedi News are talking to the U.K. media! But you don’t have to go to the news sites: Thoughts from fans like Michael Heilemann and Amy Ratcliffe. As for Expanded Universe fans, here are more thoughts from Tosche Station’s Brian, Knight Archive’s Ryan, and Fangirl’s Tricia Barr.
Speculation! Lists! People just can’t stop writing them. The Hollywood Reporter finds 15 potential writers, Slashfilm has 10 filmmakers to direct (and 5 who shouldn’t,) and Big Shiny Robot has yet more possible directors. Taking a different track, Screenrant has pros and cons of the deal, while Hitfix has some things to watch.
And now for something completely different… You know it’s not real news until crazy folks at NMA weigh in with a video. For something more serious, check out Empire’s infographic of who has what franchises.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Mark Hamill reveals that he and Carrie Fisher were told about the plans for Star Wars VII, VIII, and IX last summer. (At Celebration, perhaps?)
So when he said, “We decided we’re going to do Episodes VII, VIII, and IX,” I was just gobsmacked. “What? Are you nuts?!” [Laughs] I can see both sides of it. Because in a way, there was a beginning, a middle, and an end and we all lived happily ever after and that’s the way it should be — and it’s great that people have fond memories, if they do have fond memories. But on the other hand, there’s this ravenous desire on the part of the true believers to have more and more and more material.
Well, you can’t say they haven’t had practice keeping secrets!
Carrie’s reaction to the news breaking has so far been contained to, um, her dog. Harrison Ford is, I expect, looking into trips to Antarctica.
Stop compiling those exhaustive lists of your favorite Star Wars books: A Lucasfilm source tells EOnline’s Leslie Gornstein that Episode 7 will be “an original story.” Gornstein goes on to say that “Episode 7 will literally be nothing you’ve ever seen or read before from the Star Wars universe.” Not surprised. Not surprised in the least…
I’m not going to be the first person to say this, and I certainly won’t be the last: Don’t expect the sequel trilogy to follow the existing Expanded Universe. We know that George Lucas has done story treatments for these films that he’s handing over to Kathleen Kennedy and Disney’s LFL, and Lucas’s take on the EU has been, for most of its existence, that they’re an alternate universe. He has been a distant and uncaring god, at least as far as post-Return of the Jedi is concerned. He has used things from the EU occasionally, but I wouldn’t expect straight adaptations of any of the existing books or comics – at least not as actual episodes.
Continue reading “Unlearn what you have learned: Will the Expanded Universe survive new Star Wars movies? Should it?”
Now that the dust is settled a little from yesterday’s bombshell, we can all take a deep breath and… Continue to freak out about how there are going to be more Star Wars movies. Um.
A good place to start would be Slashfilm’s roundup of yesterday’s conference call with Russ Fischer. It addresses and expands (and yes, in some cases, speculates) on some of those lingering questions you may have on Indiana Jones, Episode VII, Industrial Light & Magic and more.
One thing I haven’t seen widely reported – though I may very well have missed it in the conference call – is Bleeding Cool’s report that Fox retains the distribution rights to the existing films.
One take I found rather interesting – if a bit paranoid – is from The Daily Intel’s Kevin Roose. He speculates that the deal is a financial dud and that Disney is getting Lucasfilm “for a steal.” I doubt this is the last we’ll hear on the financial side of this – and it’s clearly written from the perspective of a Star Wars cynic – but it’s something to keep in mind, at least. In another corner of New York Magazine, Vulture’s Kyle Buchanan and Margaret Lyons have 7 questions about Episode VII.
But overall, I think the reaction has been fairly positive, as Disney is able and – apparently – willing to let fresh eyes take on the franchise
Of course, there’s speculation on the new trilogy everywhere. ThinkProgress’ Alyssa Rosenberg weighs in on how Disney could make Episode VII awesome with 5 ideas plucked from the pages of the Expanded Universe, while Forbes’ Alex Knapp has three options and AMOG’s Keith Veronese has five. (IGN even pulled one up from their archives.) I’m sure we’re going to be seeing everyone and their vat-grown clone throw their favorite book/comic/Boba fetish into the hat for the foreseeable future. We talked a bit about this on Tosche Station last night, but you’ll just have to wait on that one!
Outside of the news sites, we’re seeing lots from the fans – and pros! – on this as well. Author Jason Fry took to Tumblr, as did Bria and Jay. Fansite proprietors at Geek My Life, NJOE and Knights Archive. And, of course, SF/F godfather John Scalzi had some thoughts as well.