Star Wars: The Force Awakens chief of creature and droid effects Neal Scanlan poses with the creatures from the movie.

It’s Friday and we’re less than a week away from Star Wars: The Force Awakens hitting theaters nationwide. I thought we’d be in Star Wars overkill at this point, but even with a Force Awakens round-up each day on the site I was expecting to be bombarded with much more Force Awakens content the week before JJ Abrams’ Star Wars sequel hits theaters. In today’s edition of Force Awakens Bits, we take a look at the following:

  • Take a first look at Greg Grunberg‘s character: X-Wing pilot Snap Wexly
  • See Four new international Force Awakens character posters revealed
  • Are all Bad Robot office visitors are forced to sign a Star Wars NDA?
  • Russell Crowe saw 9 Minutes of The Force Awakens calls it “Spectacular”
  • Nearly an hour of John Williams Force Awakens score was discarded, modified or rerecorded
  • Alamo Draft House Cinema offers Star Wars-themed meals listed on a Millennium Falcon menu
  • How Rick Carter‘s art team effected The Force Awakens scriptwriting process
  • For preparation, Oscar Issac was given blueprints of every button that had ever been used on screen in an X-Wing
  • Why JJ Abrams And Lawrence Kasdan started from scratch when Michael Arndt left Force Awakens 
  • And the header photo shows Star Wars: The Force Awakens chief of creature and droid effects Neal Scanlan posing with the creatures from the film. So cool.

All this and more in today’s Force Awakens Bits. Hit the jump to hyperspace.

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the nice guys trailer

Neither of the main characters in The Nice Guys are police officers, but the film undoubtedly falls into the familiar “buddy cop” formula that we’ve seen time and time again – two mismatched guys who don’t like each other and have little in common are forced to work together to solve a case. We’ve seen this story few dozen times before. However, The Nice Guys is the latest film from Shane Black, who is the undisputed master of the “frenemies solve a case” subgenre of action/comedy. He’s like a chef who always makes the same dish, but the flavors are so good that you don’t care.

The first red band trailer for The Nice Guys is here and it looks like a Shane Black movie through and though. Which is a good thing, because he is really, really good at making movies.

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the nice guys first look

If you don’t live in an insane asylum, then you probably love Shane Black‘s directorial debut, Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang. The screenwriter behind Lethal WeaponThe Long Kiss Goodnight, and The Last Boy Scout made a clever, hilarious, and character-driven mystery with his first outing behind the camera. The film didn’t make a ton of money at the box-office, but there’s a lot of love out there for it. With Black’s next picture, he’s somewhat returning to the dynamic and world we saw in Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang.

After the jump, read Black’s comments on his upcoming movie, The Nice Guys.

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Fathers and Daughters trailer

We’ve got two trailers that show off the film Fathers And Daughters from Seven Pounds and The Pursuit of Happiness director Gabriele Muccino: a quick trailer from Japan, and a much longer (but not necessarily better) international trailer with more footage. The family drama stars Russell Crowe as a widower father, and Amanda Seyfried as his daughter whose early years left her less than capable of forging healthy relationships.

The supporting cast here is notable, too, with Aaron Paul, Bruce Greenwood, Diane Kruger, Jane Fonda, Janet McTeer, Octavia Spencer, Quvenzhané Wallis, and Kylie Rogers on hand to help move things along — see some of them at work in the main Fathers and Daughters trailer below. Read More »

Brie Larson in The Gambler

Kong: Skull Island is about to welcome some new visitors. Brie Larson is in talks to play the female lead in the fantasy actioner, while Russell Crowe is being courted to play one of the male leads. Tom Hiddleston remains on board to star and Jordan Vogt-Roberts is directing. More on the Russell Crowe and Brie Larson Kong Skull Island news after the jump.  Read More »

Water Diviner trailer

Russell Crowe directs The Water Diviner, and stars in the film as a man who travels from Australia to Turkey to recover the bodies of his three sons, all killed in one day during the Battle of Gallipoli. But one of his sons may actually still be alive, and Crowe’s journey takes an unexpected turn. Check out The Water Diviner trailer below. Read More »

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Water Diviner trailer

With The Water Diviner, Russell Crowe steps behind the camera to direct his first feature. He also stars in the film, which is set in the dats after World War I, as a man whose sons are missing after the battle of Gallipoli. He goes to Istanbul in search of the young men. Olga Kurylenko, Jai Courtney, Cem Yilmaz and Yilmaz Erdogan all co-star in the film written by Andrew Anastasios and Andrew Knight. The Weinstein Company will release the film in the US at some point; you can see The Water Diviner trailer below. Read More »

Nice Guys release date

The last time writer/director Shane Black and producer Joel Silver worked together, the result was the very funny neo-noir Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, which helped re-launch the career of Robert Downey, Jr. After festival appearances the film was given a low-profile fall rollout by Warner Bros., and it flew under the radar of most moviegoers.

Back and Silver’s next film, The Nice Guys, will probably fare a bit different. Warner Bros. also has the distribution rights to the new picture, and it has locked Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe as stars to play a private detective and muscle-for hire, respectively, who are drawn into a massive conspiracy while tackling seemingly separate cases. Now the film has a summer 2016 release date, which means it is really on. Read More »

Ryan Gosling Shane Black Nice Guys

Ryan Gosling may get another chance at a modern take on an LA-set crime film (to offset Gangster Squad) thanks to Iron Man 3 director Shane Black. In the wake of last year’s huge Iron Man success, Black has been taking time to get his next film off the ground. While his Doc Savage film continues to simmer at Sony, his next now looks like it could be The Nice Guys. This one is a 1970s noir Black wrote with Anthony Bagarozzi.

Black is trying to get Gosling and Russell Crowe to sign on for the film, which is being produced by Joel Silver. Read More »