On Friday we ran some quotes from Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg talking about their work consulting on Star Wars: Episode 7 and writing the announced set of stand-alone spin-ff films set within the Star Wars galaxy. The Los angeles Times also caught up with Kasdan at the Final Draft Hall of Fame ceremony and got him to talk a bit more about the upcoming Star Wars movies.

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IGN was lucky to catch screenwriters Lawrence Kasdan (Empire Strikes Back, Raiders of the Lost Ark) and Simon Kinberg (Sherlock Holmes, X-Men: The Last Stand) at last night’s Final Draft Big Break screenwriting awards, where Kasdan was honored with the hall of fame award. Jim Vejvoda talked to them about the upcoming seventh installment of the Star Wars Skywalker saga and the standalone spin-off films, which they are currently working on as “consultants”. While not much in terms of details were revealed in the chat, we do get a couple bits.

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Last night word broke that LucasFilm and Disney are planning to build the first standalone Star Wars film around Yoda. That rumor was the latest piece in a puzzle that also included tidbits about screenwriter Simon Kinberg and Lawrence Kasdan writing standalone films for George Lucas’s universe, and big plans on Disney’s part to exploit the Star Wars property on a regular basis going forward.

Now Disney CEO Bob Iger, in a television appearance, has confirmed plans for standalone films and that Kinberg and Kasdan are, indeed, writing films that won’t be labeled as primary Star Wars episodes. (Michael Arndt is writing Episode VII for J.J. Abrams to direct.)

Iger does not confirm any characters, despite being asked specifically to do so, saying “I’m going to leave it to Kathy and the LucasFilm team” to reveal details when they’re ready. He does say that Abrams is acting as consultant on the standalone pictures, and highlights Kasdan’s history, too. Read his quote and see video of the appearance below.

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Since last week’s announcement that J.J. Abrams would be directing the hotly anticipated film Star Wars Episode VII, everyone’s been wondering, “What happened?” After the film was first revealed, Abrams was asked if he’d be interested in helming and he said “No.” Fast forward a few weeks and now the director of Star Trek is heading to a galaxy far, far away.

The main reason for Abrams’ change of heart was Kathleen Kennedy, the head of LucasFilm. In an new interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Kennedy explains in detail how she went about persuading the director the make the movie, which included long, secret meetings at Bad Robot with screenwriter Michael Arndt and consultant Lawrence Kasdan.

Read the full story below, which includes Kennedy’s admission that the film’s 2015 release date isn’t set in stone. Read More »

Disney just issued the final press releasing confirming that J.J. Abrams will, indeed, be directing Star Wars Episode VII. It includes quotes from Abrams, George Lucas, Kathleen Kennedy and confirms that Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg are consulting on the film. Read it below, along with quotes from Star Wars veterans Dennis Muren, Ben Burtt and Matthew Wood. Read More »

The imminent release of Star Wars Episode VII in 2015 made everyone assume Star Wars Episode VIII and XI would follow in 2017 and 2019. That was the logical progression of the news that Disney CEO Bob Iger and LucasFilm co-chairman Kathleen Kennedy stated they’d like to release a new Star Wars film every two years. Everyone figured, we’d complete a new trilogy, and maybe move on from there.

Then last week, news broke that screenwriters Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg had been hired to write new Star Wars movies, presumably Episodes VII and XI. They’d also receive producer credit on those films. Curiously, while that news was confirmed by multiple sources, Disney and LucasFilm themselves have yet to announce it and it seems we might now have a reason why.

Sources now report that while Kasdan and Kinberg are indeed writing new Star Wars movies, they may actually be additional movies outside of the planned sequel trilogy. Read more after the jump. Read More »

All right, so the sign shown above (via Collider) is just a joke, but the off-the-charts anticipation for Episode VII is very, very real. After the jump:

  • Jon Favreau has Kevin Smith‘s vote for the Star Wars VII directing job
  • Ed Burns is ambivalent on the admittedly slim possibility of getting an offer
  • Peter Serafinowicz and Chris Hemsworth would like to be in Star Wars
  • Watch Lawrence Kasdan talking about Return of the Jedi, way back when
  • Fox announces dates for the 3D re-releases of Episode II and Episode III

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Note: Until it’s announced on StarWars.com, the news of Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg writing Star Wars Episodes VIII and IX can’t be considered official, but when two Hollywood trades report on it, that’s pretty close, so this article is assuming that it’s true.

For decades, film has been considered a directors medium. (Before the ’60s, it was usually thought of as a producer’s game.) Ask anyone now to name titans of the industry, and they’re going to list directors: Ford, Hitchcock, Kubrick, Scorsese, Spielberg. And so, when the news of a new set of Star Wars movies was announced, the conversation immediately turned to directors. Who could possibly shepherd our unrealistic expectations of a sequel to Return of the Jedi?

At the only place that counts, LucasFilm, it seems they feel writers are more important than the director. While hiring Michael Arndt to write Star Wars Episode VII before hiring a director made complete sense (most directors would never commit to a project without a script), hiring Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg to write Star Wars Episodes VIII and XI before any directors are attached at all speaks volumes to how this trilogy is being handled. It seems to suggest that story is king and that’s a good thing. Read More »

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