Posted on Monday, July 13th, 2015 by Peter Sciretta
One of the highlights at Comic Con this year was a behind the scenes reel for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. When this was released over the weekend, I tried to pull together a piece dissecting the reel image by image, but the madness that is Comic Con prevented me from finishing it until now.
What follows is a breakdown of 13 things we learned from this footage, this includes confirmation of new and old characters, our first look at some of the cast, some story and character details put together from the new images matched with previous rumors, and some questions. Hit the jump to read our list.
Admiral Ackbar and Nien Nunb Are Back?
Rumors and leaked concept art seemed to suggest that Admiral Ackbar and Nien Nunb would also appear in the film. This behind the scenes video seems to confirm rumors, showing a Mon Calamari, best known as Admiral Ackbar’s alien species, and a creature that appears to be an older version of Nien Nunb.
We also see concept art for Ackbar (or the Mon Calamari) in the center background of this shot of one of the animatronic puppeted alien creature effects created for the film.
C3PO’s Red Arm
In June, a promotional cup for Star Wars: The Force Awakens revealed that C3PO would have a red arm in the new film. Now we have shot from behind the scenes to prove it is in the movie:
First Look at Ken Leung’s Character?
Director JJ Abrams is looking at the monitor in a scene that appears to take place in a rebel base, possibly the same location seen in the C3PO image above. (Notice another shot of 3PO’s new red arm here, too.) The thing to look at in this shot is the actor in the right background, which we believe to be our first look at Ken Leung’s character. We don’t know what role the Rush Hour star plays in the new film, but it looks like he’s part of the Rebel military.
Simon Pegg Plays an Alien Creature
During filming Simon Pegg visited the set of The Force Awakens, spawning rumors that he would appear in the film in some capacity. Some reports claimed that he would play an alien creature who gets his hand ripped off in a Cantina sequence. The new video confirms that Pegg plays an alien creature in the new film. The footage shows Pegg in costume (sans mask, it looks like the heat from the desert shoot got to him) in a desert location. (The background could easily be a Cantina.)
There is also another brief clip showing Pegg’s arrival on set early that morning.
Will We See Jabba the Hutt’s Relatives?
An archway on the Abu Dhabi set seems to be inspired by Ralph McQuarrie’s original unused concept art for the entrance for Jabba the Hutt’s palace from Return of the Jedi.
And here are some shots of the Ralph McQuarrie art that inspired the arch, alongside a screenshot from the trailer that shows Rey on her Speeder headed towards it. There is no confirmation that this gate is part of Jabba’s palace on Tatooine, but it may be part of another Hutt royalty’s palace. Maybe one of the Hutts lives on Jakku?