WookieeLeaks: Everything You Need to Know About John Boyega and Daisy Ridley
ScreenCrush’s WookieeLeaks is a weekly roundup of everything Star Wars! From Episode 7, to the upcoming spinoffs and the TV shows, if it pertains to that long ago, far away galaxy, we’re covering it here, bringing you our expert analysis. This week, read up on John Boyega and Daisy Ridley, gaze upon the first poster for The Force Awakens, and learn the future of Star Wars on TV.
Lifestyles of Young and New to Star Wars
Yes, Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher are all in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. But prepare yourself, fans: they are not the main characters. The actual leads of the film are Rey, Finn and Poe Dameron, played by Daisy Ridley, John Boyega and Oscar Isaac. Isaac is already a known commodity (he’s one of the best actors working today), but those other two are still relative unknowns. That’s going to change very quickly and two new interviews feel like the opening barrage in their lives being put under a microscope for the foreseeable future.
Entertainment Weekly caught up with both actors at Star Wars Celebration, where they managed to wander the show floor wearing masks so they wouldn’t be recognized. For the record, Boyega was a clone trooper and Ridley was the bounty hinter Bossk.
Ridley’s interview isn’t as revealing as you’d hope when it comes to character details. It confirms what we already know: she’s a scavenger living in a crashed AT-AT on the desert planet of Jakku who gets roped into the story when Finn wanders into her life. The bulk of the interview focuses on her life and background as an actress, but she did speak about her favorite location on the set. And yes, she becomes the latest actor to wax poetic about J.J. Abrams’ use of sets and practical effects:
EW: I know there’s not much you’re permitted to disclose about the plot of the film. But can you say which was your personal favorite location while making The Force Awakens?
Ridley: Weirdly enough, probably Abu Dhabi, even though it was so hot, it was like you literally can’t imagine that heat. The feeling of stepping onto a real set for the first time, it genuinely was a baptism of fire. To see creatures walking around and speeders chilling in the sand, that was amazing, and because I was shooting there, it was like everything had built up to that moment. So a few days in, I was like, OK. I’m getting my groove now.
Boyega’s interview is similarly tight-lipped, with the Attack the Block star talking more about his life than his role in the movie. However, the article does confirm what Boyega himself could not at Celebration: Finn is a Stormtrooper, not a rebel posing as a Stormtrooper. The exact nature of his character, whether he’s a good guy who turns bad or a good guy caught in a bad job, is still unconfirmed (although regular readers of this column will know for sure). Boyega, who is a big Star Wars fan himself, also talked about what it’s like to dive headfirst into a franchise that has one of the most passionate fanbases in the world:
EW: You mentioned not telling your parents when you were cast. It’s a big responsibility, it must be daunting. Is it kind of scary facing that big, fervent fanbase?
Boyega: It’s not. It’s not scary coming here. I mean, I’ve done Comic-Con before with Attack the Block, and one thing that is universal is the absolute passion that all these fans share. You’re going into a place that’s going to be crazy, and to be honest, I’m going crazy because I’m a big Star Wars fan! We’re all going crazy and we all can’t wait for the film to come out.
And if you think Boyega’s family knows more about Star Wars: The Force Awakens than you do, think again. He’s keeping his secrets well and suffering for it!
This is the First Poster For The Force Awakens
Last year, we heard rumors that acclaimed poster artist Drew Struzan was being coaxed out of retirement to paint the one-sheet for Star Wars: The Force Awakens and fans were rightfully jazzed. Struzan is responsible for many of the most famous movie posters in movie history. And that may still happen! But we think it’s safe that Struzan had nothing to do with the first teaser poster, which has begun to creep into select theaters.
We can’t judge an announcement poster too harshly, but that is literally the lamest, most basic design imaginable. Then again, this early in the marketing is all about “Hey! This movie exists!” We’ll probably see some really cool art in the months ahead.
The Future and Past of Star Wars Television
Over the past year, we’ve seen several Star Wars movie characters pop up on Star Wars Rebels. Darth Vader, Yoda, and Lando Calrissian have all played roles in the show’s first season, tying all of those new characters directly into the established saga. But here’s the big question: Could the reverse happen? Could future movies, particularly the Anthology movies like Star Wars: Rogue One, borrow characters from the TV shows? Rebels producer Dave Filoni thinks so:
I’ve talked to the creators of the other films going on and, you know, I’ve always made it clear if you want somebody, just let me know. They can jump over there. I don’t care. I’m all for it. Because I think it makes the experience for fans so much stronger. And what a moment it would be to see some of these animated characters up there live on the screen. It would be great for me too.
It’s not even like this would be a new thing for Disney-owned franchises! Marvel has already let its TV shows and movies share characters, both major (Agent Coulson and Peggy Carter) and minor (Agent Sitwell). As long as no movie or TV show demands that you have watched something else to enjoy the character’s appearance, there is no problem with this whatsoever.
While we look forward to a future where Star Wars shows are more intertwined with the movies, fans are also looking back. Star Wars Celebration hosted the premiere of an unfinished story arc from Star Wars: The Clone Wars called “The Bad Batch,” four episodes that were scripted and partially animated before they were scrapped. Now, these episodes have made their way online in rough animatic form, giving fans one final taste of the beloved show. You can watch them for free (and legally) over at StarWars.com.
Random Chatter of the Star Wars Varety
Have a few hours to kill? Want to avoid getting anything done today at all? Most of the major panels from this year’s Star Wars Celebration have made their way online. So dig in. Waste your day.