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Michael Arndt Gets Screenwriting Credit

The credit block on the bottom of the poster reveals that Michael Arndt gets a screenwriting credit alongside J.J. Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan. Of course, Kasdan and Abrams are grouped as a team, separated by an “and” for Arndt, per WGA standards.

We had heard many rumors over the development of Star Wars Episode VII that Abrams had disagreements with Arndt over the direction of the story, and some even reported the much of Arndt’s initial treatment, which the screenwriter supposedly worked on under George Lucas before he sold off the property, was thrown out.

We had never heard that. Abrams has spoken in the past saying that Arndt wasn’t able to accomplish what he needed due to the aggressive time frame needed to complete the screenplay. I’ve heard that the finished version of Star Wars: The Force Awakens will very much have many of the same rough beats of Arndt’s original work on the film, which may be why he still gets credit on the movie.

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Suggestive Placements

I wanted to discuss some of the suggestive placements in this poster design:

  • The almost ying-yang placement of Rey against Kylo Ren seems to suggest a lot. While this is the second poster with Finn wielding a lightsaber, it’s also the second poster with Rey in the middle. Is Rey the real Force-sensitive in this new group?
  • Grouping Han Solo and Princess Leia together might suggest they are still together in this film, which is something that has been rumored not to be the case.

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Where’s Luke Skywalker?

We’ve been saying since the film was still shooting that we would probably not see Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker in any of the marketing material. Sure, we did see him briefly in the second teaser trailer (see screen capture above), but we didn’t really “see him.” We had a good source reveal all this very early on, and I’ve tweeted and included mentions in articles over the past year.

I’m not sure of the exact reason, but the filmmakers and studio think that showing Luke might reveal too much about his role in this story. Before you freak out, I wouldn’t take that as a spoiler in any way. I wouldn’t be worried that his exclusion from the poster means much of anything — it has been in the plans for a long time. Notice that the only new action figures of Luke Skywalker are of his Empire Strikes Back look, and not his appearance in this new film. A photo of Mark in Skywalker costume leaked out months ago and Disney was very aggressive in getting it removed from all of the inter webs.

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No Episode Number in the Final Logo

Leading up to the poster premiere and the trailer release today, it had been reported that the final Star Wars: the Force Awakens poster would feature a new logo for the movie. It did not. The logo remains the same, which has annoyed some diehard fans as it does not include the episode number. Symmetry is important to some, and especially with these new “A Star Wars Story” films coming soon, it seemed like something that could have helped differentiate the Skywalker saga films from the anthology movies.

It’s interesting that Disney wants to keep close to the same aesthetics of the previous six films with a poster that almost looks like Struzan’s series of one-sheets, yet not have a poster by Struzan, and differentiate itself as something different and new with the new style logo.

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