lazypadawan: (Default)
Another celeb has expressed his interest in hopping on the Star Wars Bus, the mighty Thor:

I like Hemsworth, so it would be okay by me! (Please include shirtless scenes, thx.)
lazypadawan: (Default)

Poor Admiral Ackbar!!
lazypadawan: (Default)
This time and are claiming that Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinsberg (X-Men First Class, X-Men Days Of Future Past, Sherlock Holmes, Jumper) "have been approached" to write subsequent Star Wars films.

"Have been approached" isn't the same thing as being hired and who knows if they were even asked in the first place?

It's like those magazine covers that keep screaming "AT LAST! A BABY AND WEDDING FOR JEN" when Jennifer Aniston has remained for years single (though currently engaged) and childless and nothing changes.
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The Young Jedi arc continues with a daring rescue attempt that puts the very young apprentices to the test.

Ahsoka is a prisoner of Hondo and his gang. While he figures out what to do with her, the junior padawans back on their ship use the Force to make their lightsabers in a cool mystical sequence. Afterwards, they decide whether or not to try and rescue Ahsoka. Obi-Wan dissuades them from trying but fate makes the decision for them because 1) General Grievous attacks Obi-Wan’s ship and Obi-Wan blows it up, costing the Republic another 80 trillion credits and 2) the younglings’ own ship needs to land because its thiga-majig is leaking and that could cause the ship to go kaboom as well. Why not land on the same planet where Ahsoka’s being held?

While there the kids run into a circus troupe on its way to entertain Hondo and Company. They convince the circus that they are acrobats. They must have seen “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted,” where the zoo animals, on the lam from a crazed animal control officer, join a circus pretending they are performers. As Jedi they can certainly fake being acrobats. The circus troupe quickly accepts them. Once they got to Hondo’s HQ, the circus/rescue sequence was pretty funny and entertaining.

Ahsoka praises the kids for their crazy yet successful scheme, acknowledging it’s the sort of thing Anakin had taught her, that sometimes you have to bend the rules.

Grievous makes his first and only appearance this season, being his usual menacing self until things don’t go well and he cuts out, leaving his minions behind. Why did Obi-Wan warn him the ship was going to blow up? D’oh!

Hondo must really be hard up for cash if he’s willing to cross the Jedi to this degree just a short time after cooperating with them. Maybe I’m reading too much into it, but his behavior toward Ahsoka veered between cruel (here have a drink…psyche!) and kinda creepy. Was it me or was he threatening to sell her as some kind of sex slave?

When the two Twi’lek circus girls lead Hondo into participating in the act, he jokes that he’s not young anymore. It’s a hilarious line and in fact, drunken Hondo was funny that whole sequence. Though it is a tad risque and grown up for the little kids this arc was supposedly targeting. Oh well.

I guess there’s one more to go in this arc, which I’m enjoying a lot more than I thought I would be.
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Some "anonymous" person at claimed he's seen Michael Arndt's treatment (what, did he leave it in a bar like an iPhone in development?) and says Lando Calrissian plays a big role in the movie. Huh? Doesn't sound right to me. Furthermore while watching TMZ's show last night, I saw that a staffer ran into Billy Dee Williams at a gas station. When asked about this Moviehole rumor, Williams's response was along the lines of, "Whut?" Yeah.

Then somebody had asked Carrie at a book signing if she was in the flick and someone took her jokey answer to be a "yes." People, people never take anything that chick says seriously!

Finally, rumors are going around the film is going to be released July 7, 2015 without any explanation as to why it would be out in July instead of May like all of the previous six films.
lazypadawan: (Default)
All day I've been seeing posts and reports that Disney's forcing Lucasfilm to be a Star Wars factory, cranking out 2-3 movies a year. This is based on a report in the upcoming Enterpainment Weakly where Kathleen Kennedy informed Lucasfilm employees that the company will be producing 2-3 films a year. I did not see she said "Star Wars films." Just films. Meaning other projects besides Star Wars.

I sat through Disney's conference call with shareholders on October 30. Bob Iger had specified Star Wars films every 2-3 years, including this upcoming trilogy. He didn't say how many films in general Lucasfilm would be producing. Two different things, people.

From what I understand, when Kennedy was brought on board in the first place, I took that to mean that Lucasfilm was serious about producing all kinds of new material and not necessarily Star Wars. Now with Disney money and resources, they can finally get a back catalogue's worth of projects off the ground.
lazypadawan: (facepalm)
Courtesy of a low-level British tabloid that's like the poor bloke's Sun or Daily Mail...Disney wants to resurrect Vader because they can't imagine Star Wars without him:

Sure, if they want to destroy everything Lucas set up with the prior six films! I mean, did the Express's creative writing department even see ROTJ? I guess they also assume nobody at Disney ever saw TPM or AOTC, two movies without Darth Vader that still made a lot of money. Vader as we knew him in Eps VI-VI didn't even appear until almost the end of ROTS, another movie that made a lot of money. Maybe he could appear in a nutty nightmare sequence or something, but Vader's not going to be the primary baddie in this new trilogy.
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This was posted yesterday and it looks like more of these are on their way. They want a director who really loves Star Wars. Well, me too. Someone who really loves ALL of Star Wars.
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The Hollywood Reporter says the guy who wrote "Toy Story 3," "Catching Fire," and "Little Miss Sunshine" is the one working on an extended treatment for Ep. VII and might write the whole thing after all:

Sounds kinda believable. We'll see!
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Russell Brand says he would love to be in the new Star Wars flicks:

To which I say, "Dear God, no!!"
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With last Tuesday’s shocking announcement of a new Star Wars film set for release in three years—it might actually be more like 2 and a half years if it’s out in May 2015—comes the inevitable consequence of a Star Wars chapter in pre-production: rampant rumors and speculation.

Already there are all kinds of rumors, some that seem within the realm of believability and others that seem to be really out there. One howler is that the film will be shot in Ohio. Ohio??!! The logic of that rumor is that parts of “The Avengers” were shot there. Except “The Avengers” used urban settings on the cheap because it takes place in our world in our time. Star Wars doesn’t. Does anyone seriously believe they’ll just find cantina extras at a Wal-Mart in Dayton? Puh-leeze. Other rumors claim a screenwriter and director have already been picked, or claim that the film takes place 50 years after ROTJ and the protagonist is female. Those could feasibly have some truth or be right on the money. Or they could be b.s.. We just don’t know.

The thing is at this point, hardly anybody knows and the few that do either don’t have complete information or they are not going to say a word. Once shooting starts, there will be a lot more information, most of which will be false or inaccurate, some of which will turn out to be true.

Anyone who was into Star Wars during the mid-late ‘90s know exactly what to expect in the coming years. There will be a LOT of lies and ridiculous whoppers that will make you laugh hysterically years from now. With the prequels we all knew what it was going to be about and at least a handful of characters who absolutely had to be there. There were still silly rumors, especially early in the production process. Pulling out my old zine Blue Harvest, I can see that there rumors of a Mrs. Obi-Wan character, either to be played by then red-hot Kate Winslet or some Mexican soap opera actress. There was no such character. Also, who can forget the parade of Jedi supposedly being cast for AOTC that happened to fit a bunch of racial/ethnic stereotypes? Or that Bono was going to play a poet? I once talked to a guy in 1997 who claimed he started a rumor on the internet—I don’t know which one—just for jollies. Stuff is made up wholesale or they will run with someone’s speculation as a fact. Even closer to release there were crazy stories. For example, in early 1999 I was hearing that a then-underage Queen Amidala was going to do some sort of seductive dance in TPM. Sometime in 2001-2002 there was a rumor (I hadn’t heard it until later since I was going spoiler-free) that Anakin turns to the dark side right in the middle of the Geonosis battle and starts killing his homies. Both were preposterous and false. How about the rumor that Leonardo DiCaprio was a shoo-in for a grown-up Anakin?

Then of course were the Chicken McNuggets that were true. Around summer-fall 1996 I started to hear casting rumors and that was with limited internet access and relatively few Star Wars fan sites online. One guy I knew at the time sent me an AOL IM one fine day in October 1996 with the cryptic question, “So, what do you think of Natalie Portman?” I answered back, “Who the hell’s Natalie Portman?” (Shortly thereafter, I searched my memory banks and recalled she was the kid Timothy Hutton was in love with in “Beautiful Girls.”) And his reply was, “She’s going to be Luke and Leia’s mother.” I don’t know how this guy knew that, but he was right. Late 1996 was the first time I heard about Ewan McGregor playing Obi-Wan. “Uh, ‘Trainspotting Dude?’” was my reaction. Then not too long after that, I read that he was Denis Lawson’s nephew and realized, “Ah HA!” I’m not saying that’s the only reason Ewan got the part, but it certainly didn’t hurt! Of course, that story turned out to be true. In 2000, I’d heard that Ryan Phillipe was on the short list to be Anakin and it was true. I heard Hayden Christensen was chosen for the role about two weeks before the official announcement. The story about N*Sync shooting a scene as extras for AOTC seemed completely ridiculous since there was a similar rumor about Savage Garden, but later the group members verified it was true and the scene was cut due to fanboy bitching. (Way to set a precedent, Lucasfilm.) During the summer of 2003, I’d heard the makeup for post-duel Vaderkin was so graphic, it was probably going to push ROTS into a PG-13 rating. Yup, it turned out to be true though there are other reasons why it got the PG-13 label.

Going back further, I recall the nutty rumors floating around the playground and in the pages of Starlog magazine. (Read my 10/25 post). There’s a fan published book called “Collect All 21” about growing up during the 1977-1983 era and the bizarre stories the author had heard, like the sequel to Star Wars was already playing at some theater in Kansas City back in like 1978! When information was limited, people’s imaginations ran wild though few fans were all of that interested in having the whole movie spoiled beforehand. The only spoiler-holics around had to wait until the novelization came out weeks before the film’s release.

So with a trilogy that’s wide open on everything, the rumors are really going to be nuts. To sift your way through the nonsense, you just need to use your common sense. Distinguish between speculation, which is just “guessing” or “theorizing”, and what’s purporting to be fact. I’ve noticed that very few sources, whether they are professional or fan sources, distinguish very well between them. And remember nothing’s official until it’s announced through Lucasfilm or Disney.
lazypadawan: (Default)
Ahsoka leads a group of young Jedi to Ilum for their big moment...making their first lightsabers! There, the kidlets challenge themselves, face their fears, and learn valuable lessons.

Even though the lighting's dark and the music sounds scary at times, this episode definitely skews younger. The future victims of Order 66 are even younger than Ahsoka and adorable. Especially the Wookiee. Wookiees can't help but be cute.

At the secret Jedi Temple on Ilum--a nice carryover from the Clone Wars micro series--Yoda is waiting for the group and he instructs them to find their lightsaber crystals in a dark, cold cavern. They have to be out by the time the entrance freezes over. Apparently the right crystal is only visible to the individual Jedi. All Yoda and Ahsoka do is wait for the younglings to complete their task.

The human boy Petro (sp?) is rash and out for himself. He quickly splits off from the group, making you wonder how this kid ever cut it as a Jedi in the first place. He seems to find his crystal after a short search, only to find out it's a little piece of ice. Ha ha.

The Wookiee finds his crystal across a small lake filled with ice floes. He had to wait until the whole thing froze over to get it, forcing the Wookiee to struggle with patience.

The Ithorian kid, whose name seems to be "Biff," had to overcome his fear of the darkness in order to retrieve his crystal.

The Nautolan kid is a bit of a geek, relying on his gadgets to try and find the crystal, only to figure out he needed to trust the Force instead.

The Rodian girl had to find her crystal in a roomful of crystals.

Then there was the other girl who needed to overcome her panic to find the crystal. At first Petro, still desperately trying to find his crystal, wanted to leave her trapped behind a block of ice. What a jerk! But eventually guilt gets to him so he frees her and voila! He finds his crystal.

There are rumors they are considering a spinoff with these younglings that will appeal to a slightly younger viewership than Clone Wars. We'll have to see if that pans out but the younglings are interesting and at the very least, offer a new frontier of stories for Clone Wars.

Going over the episode trivia, there's a youngling patch designed for the show (sewn on the kids' clothing) and markings seen on Mortis are also on the Ilum temple walls.

Oh, and who couldn't love little Ahsoka?!! Big win on that one!!
lazypadawan: (Default)
While we wait on the revelation of who they pick to direct Eppy VII, which could be a matter of months to as long as a year from now, I’m laughing (I have to laugh or I will cry) at the fanboys, professional geeks, and ill-informed unimaginative hacks at various entertainment news media trying to do their best to guess. Or more accurately, campaigning for the most obvious and pleasing choice to them.

Now I will say a few people have thought up at least some interesting choices: Catherine Hardwicke, the guy who did the last few Harry Potters, Kathryn Bigelow. It would be neat to see a lady direct a Star Wars film and I don’t think Bigelow for example would be a bad choice.

A few fans have mentioned Kevin Smith but he’s had a pretty shaky track record and he’s a pothead, meaning he’d have some disciplinary issues. You don’t want that behind the camera on a Star Wars movie.

But as I’ve said before, all of the obvious and pleasing choices are all busy right now with other projects. While anything is possible, even for VIII and IX From Outer Space, I think we need to remember something here. The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. Let’s take ourselves back to 1978. Lucas had already decided he was never going to direct a movie again so he was going with hired guns for TESB and ROTJ. Who would have been the most obvious choices to people at that time? Somebody who had directed a few James Bond movies? The guy who directed the 1976 remake of “King Kong" and some of those mid ‘70s Irwin Allen disaster flicks? Somebody who had directed some Star Trek episodes? Steven Spielberg? Robert Wise? Richard Donner?

So who did Lucas pick for TESB? Irvin Kershner, someone with no science fiction or fantasy experience, someone who had never made a blockbuster or anything sfx-intensive. He was best known for a cult Western, “A Man Called Horse,” and a thriller called “The Eyes Of Laura Mars.” Why did Kersh get the nod? Because he was one of Lucas’s instructors at USC, there were stylistic similarities, and Lucas figured Kersh wouldn’t mess things up.

When Lucas had to pick another guy to helm ROTJ, his first choice was…David Lynch. Lynch had some mainstream critical success with “The Elephant Man” but Lucas is a huge fan of Lynch’s “Eraserhead,” a movie only seen by generations of college students in need of something to watch during an acid trip. (I’ve seen “Eraserhead” sober and it is a weird, weird movie.)

When Lynch turned it down, Lucas went to the next logical choice, Richard Marquand. Why? Lucas liked Marquand’s 1981 drama/thriller “The Eye Of The Needle.” Marquand’s previous film was a horror movie “The Legacy.” Again, a guy with no sci-fi, blockbuster, or sfx experience.

I’m sure Kathleen Kennedy will be the one making the list but I doubt she will make a final decision without Lucas’s input or approval. And Lucas tends to go for people whose work he’s familiar with and admires, generally avoiding blockbuster directors and choosing people who make smaller movies.

Now, given that Spielberg has done unofficial work on the Star Wars films and he had been joined at the hip with Kennedy and her husband Frank Marshall lo these many decades, he may be the guy who breaks that pattern. I don’t know what’s on his plate right now but he seems to me a solid choice to handle the first one at least.

If it’s not Spielberg, I’d say look to anyone else who’s worked with Kennedy, particularly recently. I would also look at any other longtime Lucas associates/pals. I think Francis Ford Coppola is done with mainstream movies forever, so it wouldn’t be him. But what about Walter Murch? He directed one of the popular Umbaran arc episodes for Clone Wars. Coppola’s daughter Sofia is a possibility. Then there’s Sofia’s ex-husband, Spike Jonze. Jonze is probably the greatest music video director of all time. He also made the highly-regarded “Being John Malkovich” and directed “Where The Wild Things Are” just a couple of years ago. And guess what? Around that time Lucas mentioned Jonze as his favorite young director. Ding ding ding ding!

Then there are indie newbies like South Africa’s Neil Blomkamp, director of “District 9,” and Duncan Jones, who directed “Moon.” Both were sf features. Jones did an interview on just a few years ago describing his love for the saga. Hmmm….ding ding ding ding!

A few speculators have mentioned Danny Boyle, who proved with “Sunshine” he can do sf, but Boyle’s style is very distinctive and it just wouldn’t work with Star Wars.

Maybe they will pick Brad Bird, whose work at Pixar I admire (but he has to promise to keep Simon Pegg away). Or Jon Favreau. I’m just arguing that given what Lucas did in the past, he’s likely to look at solid filmmakers who aren’t necessarily popcorn movie geek heroes.

Then the other day I was also thinking about the all-important costume design. That’s right, while everyone is thinking about who might compose in John Williams’s place or something, I’m thinking about clothes!

My first choice is the awesome Tricia Biggar, who might get three more chances at an Oscar nod. But if she can’t do it or if they want to go in another direction, I would not be toooo surprised if they pick up the Mulleavy sisters, better-known to the world as the fashion house Rodarte. Why would I pull these designer chicks out of thin air? Earlier this year, I read about Rodarte’s FW2012 show. I was not surprised to read that Natalie Portman was there. She is friends with them and frequently wears their duds; they even designed her wedding dress. But I was shocked that not only was Natalie there, but so were George Lucas and his main squeeze Mellody Hobson. Why were they there? Was Mellody looking for something to wear to her next soiree? Maybe. However, Lucas told the press that he LOVES Rodarte’s work. How many straight men do you know would ever want to go to a fashion show purely for the artistry? I'm sure that back in February during Fashion Week, Lucas had known was planning a new trilogy. Moreover, Rodarte does have experience doing film costumes; they worked on “Black Swan.” They've also done costumes for ballets (including for Natalie's hubby's productions) and costumes for other stage productions. They've worked on short films. They guest edited Frances Ford Coppola's "Zoetrope" magazine. How many more connections do you need?? Hmmm...ding ding ding ding! I'm not saying it's a done deal but I'm sure Papa George is keeping Kate and Laura Mulleavy on his short list. We shall see!
lazypadawan: (Default)
Well, at least up until after the Disney podcaster's segment. It's a long 2 hour and 45 minute show but the first half of it provides a wealth of information, particularly from Steve Sansweet and from said Disney podcaster. Among the tidbits mentioned: licensing guru Howard Roffman had just retired for a short period of time and is now back, Sansweet serving as consultant, Lucasfilm employees being reassured they're still going to do their thing, and the possibility of a "Star Wars Land" at Disney Shanghai:
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Mark Hamill confirmed via that he found out about Eps VII-IX while he and Carrie Fisher were having a private lunch with George Lucas at Celebration VI.

The Disney deal though was a total surprise to him.

I take it a sign that it's entirely possible they may be involved in some way. Fisher can't do a full length feature anymore, but can handle short cameo appearances here and there if she does anything onscreen. We'll just have to see what pans out!

Oh yeah...

Oct. 31st, 2012 12:20 pm
lazypadawan: (Default)
Happy Halloween!

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