Mark Hamill in Force Awakens
Mark Hamill took the stage for the first big presentation for Star Wars Celebration Europe 2016, a one hour question and answer session with the Jedi Master. Up front Hamill warned that he is contractually obligated not to talk about Star Wars Episode 8 or the future of the Star Wars movies, but this was one of his first public appearances where he could really talk openly about Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
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star wars episode 8 set photos

One of the great pleasures in keeping an eye on the production of Star Wars: Episode 8 over the past few months has been watching director Rian Johnson remain his usual self despite the gargantuan size of his latest film. This may be the biggest film he’s made yet, dwarfing the likes of Looper, Brick, and The Brothers Bloom, but Johnson’s social media presence has stayed on point: he’s smart, funny, informative, and often adorably weird. Oh, and he does what he can to share images from the set, giving fans something to talk about while everything else about the movie (like it’s actual title) remain under wraps.

Filming on Episode 8 is in its final weeks (Mark Hamill says the production is set to wrap up on July 22), but that hasn’t stooped Johnson from sharing images and goofy jokes straight from the set. On this miserable Friday at the end of a very miserable week (have you checked the news lately?), this is the kind of breather we all need right now. See the Star Wars Episode 8 set photos after the jump.

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rey

In this edition of Episode 8 Bits:

  • The latest wacky rumor about Rey’s family.
  • Director Rian Johnson hits social media as filming on Star Wars: Episode 8 begins to wind down.
  • Rian Johnson, Chris Miller, and Phil Lord will share the stage at Star Wars Celebration.
  • And more!

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SNL Star Wars Auditions

The 41st season of Saturday Night Live might be over (read my review of the season finale hosted by Fred Armisen right here), but that doesn’t mean the late night sketch show is done releasing new material for us to enjoy.

You might remember last fall, when Matthew McConaughey hosted Saturday Night Live, there was a sketch featuring footage of a bunch of auditions for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Stars Daisy Ridley and John Boyega got in on the fun with the rest of the SNL cast and even Jon Hamm and Emma Stone popped up. Now more auditions that were cut from the final sketch have been revealed online, including one with Matthew McConaughey making a pretty poor pitch to play Lando Calrissian.

Watch the extra SNL Star Wars auditions after the jump. Read More »

rey's island

The big questions coming out of Star Wars: The Force Awakens are who Rey’s parents are and where she comes from. Daisy Ridley‘s character even quips that its “a big mystery” early on in the film, and there are certainly a lot of theories going around to who it might be. One piece of evidence that many fans seem to be holding on to comes from John Williams‘ score from the film. We’ve posted about this in the past, but fans have analyzed Rey’s theme (the best song from the new movie) and have drawn some conclusions from that piece of music.

But did John Williams even know who Rey’s parents were when he wrote that piece or orchestration? If not, surely Oscar-nominated editor Maryann Brandon must have been told when she was helping J.J. Abrams shape the flow of the story in the editing room, right? The answer may surprise you — find out after the jump.

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star wars bits

It’s Star Wars Day, so you know what that means…an especially large edition of Star Wars Bits! In today’s edition:

  • Director Chris Miller shares a photo of a very familiar weapon.
  • Daisy Ridley wishes you a happy Star Wars Day (and asks you to donate some cash).
  • Star Wars: Battlefront offers some Star Wars Day specials.
  • Lin-Manuel Miranda‘s Star Wars: The Force Awakens track is now available.
  • The time and location of next year’s Star Wars Celebration has been revealed.
  • How to start making your own personal BB-8.
  • New The Force Awakens posters from Tim Doyle.
  • New Star Wars art from Joshua Budich.
  • A BB-8 poster created by Andy Fairhurst for Bottleneck Gallery.
  • A fanmade Star Wars art show.
  • Marvel reveals a must-have Han Solo comic book cover.
  • A relaxing and ambient trip to Dagobah.
  • Eight minutes of gameplay from LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
  • The plot of The Force Awakens told through Emoji.
  • And more!

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

star wars jj abrams daisy ridley

J.J. Abrams and Daisy Ridley first joined forces to explore a certain galaxy far, far way, but now they’re looking to extend their relationship beyond the Star Wars universe. The pair are reuniting on Kolma, a fantasy thriller to be produced by Abrams’ Bad Robot. But Abrams isn’t directing this time around. Instead, that job will go to Marielle Heller, who broke out last year with the superb coming-of-age story Diary of a Teenage GirlRead More »

episode 8 bits

While that new Rogue One trailer grabbed all of the recent headlines, production on Star Wars: Episode 8 has continued in full force. In today’s edition of Episode 8 Bits:

  • The great Frank Oz has apparently reported to Episode 8‘s Pinewood Studios set.
  • A look at Poe Dameron’s new wardrobe.
  • Details of a “casino” scene and other potential spoilers.
  • Mark Hamill and Rian Johnson get silly on Twitter.
  • Adam Driver chats about the differences between Rian Johnson and J.J. Abrams.
  • Daisy Ridley explains why Rey’s parents don’t matter.
  • A new look at the film’s Irish sets.
  • John Boyega calls Kelly Marie Tran one of Episode 8‘s leads.

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Rey's Mother in Star Wars

After the pure excitement from the debut of the Rogue One: A Star Wars Story trailer died down, people started picking apart the trailer frame by frame (and that includes us). One of the more popular theories about what we saw in the trailer was that Jyn Erso, the lead rebel character played by Felicity Jones, might be the mother of our new favorite future Jedi, Rey from Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

There weren’t really any clear hints that this theory could be true beyond the fact that Jyn Erso was white, brunette, had a British accent, had a similar background to Rey, and shared some common facial features. Plus, Jyn could easily have a child sometime between A New Hope and The Force Awakens who could have grown up to be the stranded Jakku orphan. That’s not exactly the strongest evidence, but the theory gained traction and fans thought it made sense.

Unfortunately, Daisy Ridley has just put out that fire by debunking the theory about Rey’s mother in Star Wars. Read More »