Posted on Sunday, July 6th, 2014 by Peter Sciretta
Last week Kevin Smith posted a photo of him crying with tears of joy as he left the London set of JJ Abrams‘ Star Wars Episode VII. The filmmaker explained that he signed an NDA and was unable to talk about his experience, but left his followers with the photo. /Film reader David B alerted me to a video of Kevin Smith’s Q&A at the Neuchatel International Film Festival in Switzerland, where he talks at length about his Star Wars Episode 7 set visit. Watch Kevin Smith talk about his Episode 7 adventure, after the jump.
Here is an excerpt where Smith talk about watching a bit of filming, where he hints about seeing Stormtroopers in action:
What I saw, I absolutely loved. It was tactile — it was real. It wasn’t a series of fucking green screens and blue screens in which later a bunch of digital characters would be added. IT was there, it was happening. I saw old friends who I haven’t seen since my childhood, who aren’t really friends, but I love them more than some of my fucking relatives. I saw uniforms, I saw artillery I haven’t seen since I was a kid. I saw them shooting an actual sequence in a set that was real. I walked across the set, there were explosions. And it looked like a shot right out of a Star Wars movie.
Smith talked about visiting Stage M at pinewood, where they were not filming that day, where he visited the set of the Millennium Falcon:
He turns the lights on and there is the Millennium Falcon from my childhood. Now the ship outside looks like a movie set, but the inside, fully replicated, fully built. The guy told me, they took two blueprints: Star Wars and Empire, because the cockpit in Empire was bigger than the cockpit in Star Wars. So they went somewhere between the two. So he takes me over and I’m just looking at it. You look at it from the outside and you can still see inside. I don’t presume we’re going aboard or anything, and then Morgan (JJ’s assistant) says “You ready to go up?” I said (excitedly) “We can go on it?!”
As I walked up that ramp I realized that the something that was missing from those other movies (the prequels) and its now in these movies. And its not the obvious like hey the Millennium Falcon or hey the characters that we know are returning. Its something else entirely — he’s building a tactile world, a world you can touch. And hes replicating with all the love of someone who has the world’s greatest collection of Star Wars figures. And when you walk on that set man, I don’t know how else to describe it except thusly: you use another pop culture reference to describe this pop culture phenomenon. Its like the field of dreams, the Kevin Costner movie. And if JJ builds it, we’re all going to come hard, because its amazing. It looks fantastic. So anyone out there wondering if hes going to pull it off, hes pulling it off. He showed me cut scenes, he showed me sequences, images, pictures. I cried and I hugged that guy. And I’m sure as I was crying and hugging on him that he was thinking “time is money” because theyre making a movie. But he got it. He was very flattered. And I was like “Honestly dude, you’re doing it. You’re making my childhood again. You’re doing our Star Wars. What I saw, blew me away.
This is only a fraction of what Smith said in his 11 minute story about his visit. You can watch Smith talk about his visit to the Episode 7 set at the 35:00 mark: