Craig Drake Millennium Falcon metal

Some Episode VII speculation, lots of video game news and the ultimate Star Wars champion are all in this edition of Star Wars Bits. Below, read about the following:

  • Peter Mayhew comments on potentially coming back for Star Wars Episode VII.
  • The creative director of Uncharted is in charge of the a new Star Wars video game.
  • Footage from a cancelled Darth Maul video game is now online.
  • Obi-Wan Kenobi is the 2014 Star Wars champion.
  • One of the latest rumors is Lord of the Rings star Dominic Monaghan could be in Episode VII.
  • Check out a new poster for Star Wars Rebels, which may reveal new info next month.
  • Watch a blooper reel for Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones.
  • Artist Craig Drake released three amazing new Star Wars posters, available now.

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attackoftheclones

Now that Disney owns Lucasfilm, the sky is the limit in terms of Star Wars films. We know there’s a sequel trilogy on the way. We know there are spin-off movies in the works and we know they’re hoping to release a new Star Wars movie every single year for the foreseeable future. That’s a lot of Star Wars.

A few months back, I wrote a little editorial suggesting these developments might allow Lucasfilm to remake the prequels. I even offered some ideas of how to do that story wise. Turns out, I wasn’t the only person to have some version of that idea. Back in early 2012, Belated Media on YouTube released a video called “What If Star Wars Episode I Were Good” and, this week, they released the sequel, “What If Star Wars Episode II Was Good?” It’s 16 minute pitch dissecting the film’s problems and offering solutions.

Belated Media is decidedly less vicious than Red Letter Media, but just as insightful, if not more so. We’ve embedded both videos below. They’re well worth watching. Read More »

Harrison Ford Han Solo

If J.J. Abrams really does cast Leonard Nimoy in Star Wars Episode VII, as the Star Trek actor suggests, do you think that’s more likely to heighten or defuse the Wars / Trek rivalry? Also after the jump:

  • Al Pacino explains why he said no to Han Solo
  • See Episode II in 3D at Star Wars Celebration Europe
  • Kyle Newman offers a longer cut The Return of The Return of the Jedi
  • Nerdist promotes the Star Wars: Course of the Force charity run
  • See an unused poster concept for the original Star Wars

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Until last year, the best way to milk additional theatrical coin out of the Star Wars franchise seemed to be releasing the films in 3D remasters. The process started with the 3D release of Episode I: The Phantom Menace, which hit theaters in February 2012. That release didn’t do all that well, and with the announcement of Star Wars Episode VII, Disney and LucasFilm are now ready to concentrate only on that film.

So the 3D versions of Episode II and III won’t be released this year as planned. Deadline confirms with LucasFilm reps that LucasFilm now wants to focus on “rebooting the franchise” with the J.J. Abrams-directed Episode VII, scripted by Michael Arndt. We don’t know if the 3D conversions of the prequels might be released at some point in the future.

After the break, quizzed on his new directing gig, J.J. Abrams surprises no one by avoiding specifics, and others react to the news. 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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Good news for Star Wars fans hoping to get the original trilogy in theatrical 3D. LucasFilm has just announced the second two prequel films, Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, will get theatrical 3D re-releases on September 20, 2013 and October 11, 2013 respectively. Announced at Star Wars Celebration VI in Orlando, FL, the question becomes: Can the original trilogy be far behind?  Read More »

Last month I received a cryptic e-mail inviting me to a private screening of a new Star Wars film edited by Topher Grace — which is funny because I had no idea there was a new Star Wars film in the works, with or without Grace’s involvement. I was told the screening was a secret private event arranged only for friends only and was asked not to talk about it beforehand. The event was held somewhere in the Hollywood area in a a screening room filled with filmmakers, editors, actors, actresses and only a few press friends. I was told I could blog about it afterwards if I wanted, so here goes…

For those of you who don’t know, Topher Grace is a film geek. He loves the Star Wars films, the Back to the Future movies and all the same signature titles of any film geek who grew up in the 1980s. He recently became interested in the editing process and wanted to learn more about the art form. Instead of cutting a short film, he wanted to use something he was more familiar with.

His idea was to edit the Star Wars prequels into one movie, as they would provide him a lot of footage to work with. He used footage from all three prequels, a couple cuts from the original trilogy, some music from The Clone Wars television series, and even a dialogue bit from Anthony Daniels’ (C-3PO) audio book recordings. He even created a new opening text crawl to set up his version of the story.

The result is an 85-minute movie titled Star Wars: Episode III.5: The Editor Strikes Back. It should be noted that the Star Wars prequel trilogy is almost 7 hours in total length, and the shortest film (Episode 1) is more than 51 minutes longer than Grace’s fan cut. What this means is a lot of footage ended up on the editing room floor, and a lot of creative choices were made in the editing process. And the result? Topher Grace’s Star Wars film is probably the best possible edit of the Star Wars prequels given the footage released and available.

Whats most shocking is that with only 85 minutes of footage, Topher was able to completely tell the main narrative of Anakin Skywalker’s road from Jedi to the Sith. While I know the missing pieces and could even fill in the blanks in my head as the film raced past, none of those points were really needed. Whats better is that the character motivations are even more clear and identifiable, a real character arc not bogged down by podraces, galactic senates, Jar Jar Binks, politics or most of the needless parts of the Star Wars prequels. It not only clarifies the story, but makes the film a lot more action-packed.
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Very few of us would argue that the ending of the first Back to the Future is absolutely perfect. “Where we’re going we don’t need roads,” coupled with a flying car exploding out of the screen for a jaw-dropping cliffhanger is pretty tough to beat. But one YouTube user actually found a way, not to improve it per say, but to cleverly combine it with something else we all know and love. To say more would be to ruin a quick, well-made, clever video you’ve got to check out. Read More »

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