Anthony Daniels wraps on Episode IX (and other updates)

→ 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.

→ We haven’t heard from many other cast members since John Boyega’s big hint, but we do know that Adam Driver was filming when the Oscar nominations were announced, per Spike Lee. (Here’s Driver himself on his nom.) He’s at Sundance now for The Report, where he’s perfecting his Star Wars dodges.

→ The other supporting nominee who happens to be in Star Wars, Richard E. Grant, has his own reaction in the NYT. He actually talks about IX – and his nomination – with Radio Times.

→ 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.

→ And finally…

Solo gets VFX Oscar nod

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.

John Boyega working hard and other Episode IX updates

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”

In non-Star Wars news, he’s executive producing and overseeing the soundtrack for God Is Good, a South African crime thriller.

→ Naomi Ackie nabbed a role in the upcoming Game of Thrones prequel series.

→ 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.”

→ Dominic Monaghan shared his Episode IX jacket, as well as attending a Manchester United game with Kelly Marie Tran and Billie Lourd.

→ In the realm of possible spoilers, another Making Star Wars set report.

→ 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.

Adam Driver, Richard E. Grant among Star Wars actors up for for Golden Globes

Several Star Wars actors got Golden Globes nominations today –Adam Driver (for BlacKkKlansman) and Richard E. Grant (for Can You Ever Forgive Me?) are both in the running for a supporting nod, while in the TV categories we have Donald Glover (for Atlanta), Keri Russell (for The Americans), Laura Dern (The Tale) and Thandie Newton (Westworld), all in different categories (lead comedy, lead drama, lead limited series and supporting series, respectively). Grant and Russell will make their Star Wars debuts in the upcoming Episode IX.

We also see Marvel get their first Best Drama nod at any major awards show, for Black Panther. This is the first superhero picture, period, to be nominated to the category for the Golden Globes. (Deadpool did get a nod in 2017, but as a Comedy.) It’s also up for Song and Score.

You can check out all the nominations at EW.

Our first look at an Episode IX set? (Sadly, no.)

Did Episode IX’s Director of Photography, Dan Mindel, just give us our first look at one of the film’s brand new sets? “Space lights ….. unbeatable quality source of ambient lighting,” Mindel writes. “6000 watts 6 lamps or 3000 watts 3 lamps!” The image was taken in London. If it is, chances are its J.J. approved Or, it’s probably from 2012’s John Carter. Oh well, we tried.

Mindel notably posted our first behind-the-scenes look at The Force Awakens forest fight – after the film came out – but deleted it soon afterward.

Meanwhile, head below the cut for some other cast and crew tweets from the past week. Richard E. Grant on getting the job, BB-8 operator Brian Herring on getting started, who John Boyega has hugged, and Mark Hamill is in… Prague? Okay, that might not be related to IX. But hey, Millie is cute.

Continue reading “Our first look at an Episode IX set? (Sadly, no.)”

Episode IX begins filming August 1, confirms Williams and Fisher

J.J. Abrams’ Episode IX will begin filming on August 1 at London’s Pinewood Studios, StarWars.com has announced, confirming that Billy Dee Williams, Mark Hamill, and Carrie Fisher (via unused The Force Awakens footage) will be returning.

Interestingly, the release calls IX “the final installment of the Skywalker saga.”

As expected, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Anthony Daniels, Joonas Suotamo, and Billie Lourd are also returning. They’re being joined by new (to Star Wars) faces, Naomi Ackie and Richard E. Grant.

A late addition to the release was Keri Russell, the only new-to-Star-Wars actor rumored for this round.

More details on the Fisher footage:

The role of Leia Organa will once again be played by Carrie Fisher, using previously unreleased footage shot for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. “We desperately loved Carrie Fisher,” says Abrams. “Finding a truly satisfying conclusion to the Skywalker saga without her eluded us. We were never going to recast, or use a CG character. With the support and blessing from her daughter, Billie, we have found a way to honor Carrie’s legacy and role as Leia in Episode IX by using unseen footage we shot together in Episode VII.”

Composer John Williams and Director of Photography Dan Mindel are also returning.