A rumor was circulating yesterday that The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson had dropped out of his upcoming standalone Star Wars trilogy, until Johnson himself chimed in. “No it isn’t true,” he tweeted late Wednesday night. “I’m still working on the trilogy. With all due respect to the movie bros, who I’m sure are lovely kind bros with good fraternal intentions.”
Johnson has been a frequent target of some less savory parts of the fandom who have been unusually irate about The Last Jedi.
As we patiently (or not) await the Episode IX title, Making Star Wars has a nice set of rumors/possible plot details to briefly sate (or enrage) hungry fans. First up, we have a little something about the Knights of Ren, alongside a bit of speculation as to what it means. Then, and just as mysterious, what is the movie’s big MacGuffin? They don’t know, but there’s a bit here on how it (may) drive the plot.
Let’s all remember that the one big thing about rumors, though: It’s all a game of telephone, and sometimes guesses and assumptions made along the way get all mixed up in a tiny bit of truth. Remember, MSW had Knights rumors from last time that turned out to be nothing. As always, I recommend not taking these things too much to heart – at least until we have proof in the form of something official, anyway.
All we’re getting from official sources are firm silence and some minorteasing, so rumors have to do. For now.
→ Anthony Daniels (and thus, Threepio) has wrapped filming on Episode IX. “…We’re so proud to have worked with such a lovely, talented cast & crew lead by J.J. & Kathy,” he tweeted this afternoon. “I’ll miss everyone but I’m glad to know that we’ve been making something exceptional together, to share with the waiting world.
→ No matter how much wishful thinking is knocking around the internet, there won’t be anything from Episode IX at the Super Bowl. Like Solo last year, Disney’s likely contenders for a big game spot are all spring/summer releases. More at Deadline.
→ That said, I still expect that our next major drop will be the title.
Oscar nominations came out this morning, and Solo got a nod for Best Visual Effects. Congrats to ILM’s Rob Bredow, Patrick Tubach, Neal Scanlan and Dominic Tuohy and the rest of the crew. It’s up against Avengers: Infinity War, First Man, Ready Player One and Christopher Robin.
We’ve also got a Golden Globes repeat in the Supporting Actor Race, with Adam Driver (for BlackkKlansman) and Richard E. Grant (for Can You Ever Forgive Me?) going up against each other, as well as Mahershala Ali (who won the Golden Globe,) Sam Elliott and Sam Rockwell.
It’s another record-breaker for Marvel, as Black Panther comes out with seven nominations, including Best Picture. It’s the first superhero movie, period, to be a Best Picture nominee. Ludwig Goransson, who will score The Mandalorian, is up for the film’s score.
Low-res preview pages for Industrial Light & Magic Presents: Making Solo: A Star Wars Story have appeared on Edelweiss. Take a look inside the Disney era’s first making-of book in the gallery under the cut.
John Boyega got his hands dirty – and a little bloody – on the set of Episode IX today. He shared on Instagram: “Great working day on set!! The whole team pushed themselves today to achieve something visually crazy! I’ve had many moments of shock on set but not like today and I can’t wait until you know why. #FN2187”
→ Adam Driver has been doing a lot of press for BlacKkKlansman during awards season, and in a recent Q&A he briefly addressed signing on for Star Wars and having “one piece of information of where it was all going.”
→ And for those who want to avoid the (possible) spoilers, there have been a few reports that a trailer has been cut, but little on the timing. No one is ruling out one appearing early (by which I mean, before Celebration in April) but it seems more likely to me that we’ll get a title as (maybe) production officially finishes, which is how things went down for The Force Awakens. (And that’s likely soon, given all the cast and crew gifts we’ve seen lately.) Could we get a teaser of some sort then? Never say never, but I’m not counting on it. Of course, I’ve been wrong before.
Today is the day that Solo debuts on Netflix. It joins The Last Jedi and Rogue One on the streaming service – though the later will be departing on the 18th. (If you’re not in the U.S., your terms – and the available films – may vary.)
Bob Iger talks a great deal about the development of Disney+ and the business in-and-outs of the service in an interview with Barron’s. For our purposes, the relevant bit here is that they’re not going to make a Star Wars movie for it:
Almost every movie the studio makes is a $100 million-plus movie, and we’re not looking to make movies at that level for the service. We’re looking to invest significantly in television series on a per-episode business, and we’re looking to make movies that are higher budget, but nothing like that. We wouldn’t make a Star Wars movie for this platform.
This is pretty much a no duh kind of thing – and yes, io9 did that headline first, damn them – but it may have been on people’s minds after Solo. Still, given the rumors we’ve heard about the standalone movies that were in play, they might be better suited for TV anyway. On that note, Iger on the thinking behind doing Star Wars TV for streaming:
I guess we could have made the Star Wars series for ABC if we wanted. But the budget and what we’re spending on it and the nature of the material suggested it would be a perfect anchor for the new service. Because it’s a priority for the company, that needs to be reflected in the trafficking or the direction of where a lot of content goes. There have to be some subjective decisions made on where stuff goes because we have to feed this new beast.
Barron’s being a business-oriented publication, there’s a lot of nitty gritty in the article, but it might shed some light on Disney’s recent decisions.
He also says that the Galaxy’s Edge section at Disneyland will open in June, which is a bit more specific than the previous “summer.”