Star Wars Bits: Force Awakens Premiere, No Disney Logo, Benicio Del Toro's Pink Lightsaber And More

In today's edition of Star Wars Bits we'll take a look at the following:

  • The date and location of the Star Wars: The Force Awakens world premiere
  • The Disney logo/fanfare will not play before Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  • Is the rumor that Star Wars: The Force Awakens won't screen early for press a bad sign?
  • What color lightsaber would Benicio del Toro have?
  • Star Wars producer Simon Kinberg on secrets, strong female characters and Bob Iger's involvement.
  • R2 Builders have launched the BB-8 Builders Club

All that and more in today's Star Wars Bits. Hit the jump to hyperspace!

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Star Wars: The Force Awakens World Premiere Date

The Hollywood Reporter has learned the date and location of the world premiere for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. According to their sources, the film will have its world premiere in Los Angeles on December 14th, 2015, before heading for a premiere in London "followed by other events around the world." The report also claims that there "likely will be minimal screenings for press and cast and crew in advance of the premiere."

Junkets for movies usually take place in the days leading up to the world premiere when the whole cast and crew is together. This usually happens a few weeks before release, and not the week of release.

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Not Screening For Press Until Days Before Release?

If THR's report is correct, junket press either won't have the movie screened for them or will not see the movie until after the premiere on December 14th, which is hours before the film hits theaters internationally. Remember, Star Wars: The Force Awakens will hit theaters on December 17th in the U.K. and December 16th in France prior to its debut in the United States on December 18th.

In the film critic world, typically only films that are not good don't screen early, but Star Wars can be the exception for anything and probably is. This is no cause for alarm — but one has to wonder why Disney would not screen the film for press and critics until the day or days before release.

You may guess that it has to do with spoilers, but the ebook release of The Force Awakens novelization hits the same week and all the spoilers will very likely leak out well before the premiere (look at how that happened with all the toys).

The decision to screen so late likely has to do with one of a few things: secrecy (which I doubt — remember, a studio will put a spoiler moment in a trailer if they think it will sell more tickets), the fact that the film isn't done and will be worked on until the last minutes (this is typical of director J.J. Abrams and not an indication of the film's state), or maybe a strategy to create an unprecedented trending event on social media the week of release by forcing all coverage, reviews, interviews, etc., to hit at the same time.

Some people say that screening the film to critics and press can only hurt it. But I think that is only true if a substantial amount of those people don't love it. Good word of mouth can help any movie, even a movie on the galactic event level of Star Wars. And we've already seen much evidence that bad reviews can't hurt a big blockbuster event film (see the Transformers film franchise as evidence).

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StarWarsJunk is reporting that the Disney logo and fanfare will not play before Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The report claims that Disney's CEO Bob Iger did a Skype Q&A with 500 college students and revealed that we should only expect the Lucasfilm logo and fanfare before the movie, as the the Disney logo and fanfare.

This shouldn't be a huge surprise as the Walt Disney Pictures logo and fanfare doesn't play in front of the Marvel Studios films, and Disney is probably taking the same tactic with the Star Wars line of films.

BB-8 builders club logo

A group of R2 Builders have announced the launch of the BB-8 Builders Club (or "BB-8 Builders"). Started in April 2015, the international Star Wars fan group is dedicated to building life-size, working replicas of the new Star Wars droid BB-8, which will make its debut in Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Founded by a handful of current members of the R2-D2 Builders Club, the BB-8 Builders began forming just after Star Wars Celebration Anaheim in April 2015. Ever since that seminal event (in which a working, practical BB-8 rolled out onstage during a special presentation for The Force Awakens) the Club has gathered detailed information & photos and has done painstaking analysis from everything available in order to generate and share official sets of Club plans that will assist members in the construction of their own BB-8.

One of the cool things about the BB-8 Builders Club is that all BB-8 plans created and generated by the group will be open source and publicly available for fair use. You can watch a video showing Michael Erwin, a member of the group, talking about parts development:

If you want more information about The BB-8 Builders Club, check out the official website of the BB-8 Builders Club at www.bb8builders.club (full website is under design and development) or check out their more functional Facebook Group.

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The Hollywood Reporter has a good feature on producer Simon Kinberg, and in the interview he talks a little bit about his work on the Star Wars movies and television show. When asked if the Star Wars Anthology spinoffs would connect to any of the main Star Wars Saga movies, Kinberg was quick to deflect: "I'm careful not to talk about the content of any Star Wars movie, so I will say no comment." He joked that "it's like Fight Club," in that "the first rule of Star Wars is you don't talk about it." The only real answer he gives is when he was asked about the franchise's move towards more strong female characters, and whether it's part of their plan to cultivate more young female Star Wars fans:

I don't know if it's calculated. Part of what we all want to do is make movies that look like the world we live in. Over half the world we live in is female, and we don't live in an all-white world. The moviegoing world looks like our world. That hasn't always been true in big-budget movies. Certainly, there are female protagonists, but very few in big-budget movies. In the past, they've tended to be pretty whitewashed.

He also insists that Bob Iger has a lot of involvement in the franchise, or at least the spin-off films: "That guy is like the president of 10 countries at the same time. I have no idea how he has time to do everything that he does. I think part of it for him is that he genuinely loves what he's doing and he's still excited and inspired by the different aspects of his job." I've also heard Iger is very hands-on with everything the company is doing, he's a workaholic.

Benicio Del Toro has been making the rounds promoting his latest movie, and he is being asked many questions about Star Wars Episode VIII. While he can't say much, Digital Spy got an answer when they asked the actor what color lightsaber he would have. Watch the video above for his answer. And no, I wouldn't consider his answer to be a spoiler, I think its just fun.