Star Wars Land Rendering

In today’s edition of Star Wars Bits:

  • A very cool update on Disney’s Star Wars theme park land.
  • Words of wisdom from Carrie Fisher and Kathleen Kennedy.
  • Not one, but two Obi-Wan Kenobi actors speak out.
  • An admittedly cool Star Wars/Game of Thrones mash-up.
  • Lawrence Kasdan is ready to retire from Star Wars.
  • J.W. Rinzler talks about the upcoming Making of Star Wars: The Force Awakens book.
  • George Lucas‘ new museum may have found a new home.
  • Fantasy Flight Game reveals the newest Star Wars: Imperial Assault expansions.
  • A bunch of video games are heading to Star Wars Celebration.
  • And more!

Making Star Wars has a quick report about the level of immersion that Disney Imagineers are shooting for with the new Star Wars land coming to Disney theme parks later this decade:

There are going to be some kind of “Force Opportunities” placed throughout Star Wars Land. Imagine a boulder. Kids will walk up to the boulder and attempt to lift it all day. But at one special moment, one special child will actively use the Force and lift the rock. We don’t know if it will be a ship or just a rock or what. It sounded like there would be smaller “Force Opportunities” that occur often and others that only happen once or twice a day.

This sounds very much like certain areas of Universal Studios’ Wizarding World of Harry Potter, where tourists can wave wands purchased in nearby souvenir stores to activate certain elements of the park and simulate magical moments.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens: carrie fisher as princess leia

While promoting the new documentary Bright Lights, the wonderful Carrie Fisher was asked about the success of Star Wars: The Force Awakens:

This movie’s about family, Star Wars is. That’s why it has the appeal […] I go to Comic-Con because it’s an amazing thing to observe. The fans are incredible and they bring the entire family. It’s about family and that’s the most amazing thing

And he’s right. Star Wars is about family, even if it’s about the single most dysfunctional family in the galaxy, where dad is a mutilated cyborg and brother and sister accidentally share a kiss.

Speaking of popular genre series with a strong emphasis on families, someone has taken the Tower of Joy sequence from this season of Game of Thrones and replaced every sword with lightsabers and re-scored the whole thing with John Williams music. Heck, they even added a classic Star Wars wipe at the start of the scene. Share this video with the nerd in your life.

Kathleen Kennedy

The real brain behind the recent re-emergence of Star Wars is Lucasfilm’s Kathleen Kennedy, who took the reins of the series after George Lucas retired. In a new interview, she spoke about Lucas trusting her enough to take on his legacy:

The trust we have shared comes from working together and building a friendship for over 30 years. I feel I’ve got an insight into what drives George as an artist and what drives him personally. Everything that came from his incredible imagination was going to have to carry on without his creative vision, and so asking me to provide that stewardship was daunting to say the least. In a sense I’m playing a bifurcated role, protecting a legacy and working with Disney to grow a business.

She emphasized trust once more when she was asked about selecting filmmakers to helm the new Star Wars movies:

Both J.J. and Rian grew up on Star Wars and those films were instrumental in inspiring them to make films of their own. They also have a strong respect for the mythology that George created, and their unique storytelling talents made both Disney and myself confident that they would live up to that legacy while honoring their own styles and sensibilities as filmmakers. Trust is extremely important.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens: jj abrams and lawrence kasdan

Legendary screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan has revealed that his screenplay for the upcoming Han Solo spin-off will probably be the last movie he writes, mainly because he wants to get back to directing and because he’s tired of writing Star Wars movies:

I want to get back in directing. Those movies take three years to do and there’s so many effects in them; that’s just not what I am interested in. I have written four Star Wars movies and that is plenty for anyone.

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