Wedge Antilles Star Wars

Over the past few weeks, it’s become pretty obvious casting Star Wars Episode VII is a priority at Disney and Lucasfilm. Besides all the major actors who’ve read for roles, open casting calls literally all over the world are still ongoing, hoping to find two teenagers who are believed to anchor the film.

A new report in the Hollywood Reporter suggests that search is still ongoing and adds a new wrinkle. The piece says, because of the recent rewrite by J.J. Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan, they’re also casting “a 40-something military man a la Matt Damon in Elysium.” Read More »


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JJ Abrams on a new Trek vessel.

The Star Wars world was shook last last month when it was announced screenwriter Michael Arndt was leaving Star Wars Episode VII. He was replaced by the film’s director J.J. Abrams and producer Lawrence Kasdan, who himself wrote The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi and Raiders of the Lost Ark. To many, the move was the first acknowledgement there were major behind the scenes issues with the highly anticipated sequel. Yet, despite rumors of disagreements between Arndt and Abrams, no one officially commented.

Abrams is now out doing press for his show Almost Human and blamed the aggressive timeframe for the film as the reason for the change. Read his quotes below. Read More »

Star Wars Abrams Logo

If you wondered why there hasn’t been any real news on the Star Wars Episode VII front, this is likely a big part of the reason. The script Michael Arndt was writing (likely based on George Lucas‘ original outline) is no longer in play. Instead, J.J. Abrams and Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan are scripting. Read More »

Young Boba Fett

Fans have spent so much time focusing on what’s going to happen with J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars Episode VII, we’ve all but ignored the 2016 Star Wars film. Not Episode VIII mind you — that’ll likely be in 2017. In 2016, we’ll get a Star Wars spinoff movie, written and produced by either Lawrence Kasdan or Simon Kinberg. Each writer is working on a film that’ll focus on a specific Star Wars character; we’ve known these spin-off movies are meant to be released between episodes of the new trilogy. Possible characters rumored for these films are Yoda, Han Solo or Boba Fett.

If that’s true though, which stories will we see on screen? At a recent Disney investor conference, chief financial officer Jay Rasulo referred to those movies not as “spin-offs,” but as “origin story films.” Read More »

Lego X-Wing 2

There’s lots of Star Wars trivia, jokes and crazy fandom in this edition of Star Wars Bits. Below, read about the following:

  • A conversation from July 1981 where George Lucas described the prequels, with a few differences.
  • Electronic Arts plans to reveal their new Star Wars games at E3.
  • Luke Skywalker’s pants from A New Hope sold for $36,000.
  • J.J. Abrams promises include a Conan O’Brien Easter Egg in Star Wars Episode VII.
  • The world’s largest Lego creation has been revealed, and it’s an X-Wing Fighter.
  • A fake J.J. Abrams Star Wars Episode VII trailer plays with the mystery box.
  • Awesome new Star Wars art is out next week from Acme Archives.

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This week I talked to the great people at the Writers Guild Foundation Archive about giving us access to something unprecedented from Star Wars history. Screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan donated his original handwritten first draft of The Empire Strikes Back. The WGA West archive has the only copy in existence, other than the original, in addition to later drafts with notes by Kasdan himself. After the jump you’ll see a series of pages that the WGA West has given us exclusive access to premiere in celebration of the “May the Fourth” celebration. So enjoy, and may the fourth be with you!

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

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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