WookieeLeaks: New ‘Star Wars: Episode 7′ Actors, Characters and Spaceships
ScreenCrush’s WookieeLeaks is a weekly roundup of everything 'Star Wars'! From 'Star Wars: 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, a familiar face joins 'Star Wars: Episode 7' at the last minute, Brad Bird explains why he turned down directing the new film, and read descriptions of new characters and spaceships.
A Note on That Linked Concept Art
Like a few weeks ago, this week saw some major 'Star Wars: Episode 7' leaks. Unlike the last one, which spoiled a massive moment from the film's climax, this one involved a massive deluge of very spoilery concept art from the film. There's a big difference between posting minor story details and the occasional leaked piece of artwork, but we have to draw the line somewhere. Since this is a 'Star Wars' news column, we'll let you know that this art is out there and you can find it pretty easily through the search engine of your choice. Just be careful out there!
We'll get to some less specific/nefarious 'Star Wars: Episode 7' business in a bit.
'Star Wars: Episode 7' Business
Although this was a fairly quiet week on the 'Star Wars: Episode 7' news front, plenty of information came out of the production and it's all mostly kinda' sorta' interesting. Let's start with "most interesting" and work our way down to "tabloid fodder."
First of all, it was revealed that Warwick Davis, who played the Ewok, Wicket, in 'Return of the Jedi' and made a cameo in 'Star Wars: Episode I' has finally been asked to join the cast of 'Star Wars: Episode 7.' Since his hiring comes so late into production, his part is most likely a small bit of fan service instead of a substantial role. So keep your eyes peeled for the little guy in the alien costume -- that's probably Mr. Davis.
The news was announced in a cute little video:
The last time we heard from a filmmaker who turned down 'Star Wars: Episode 7,' David Fincher was describing his fear of not having creative control on the film. Now, we get to hear why Pixar veteran and 'The Incredibles' director Brad Bird declined the job. In an interview with MTV, the director said that taking on the next chapter of the 'Star Wars' saga would have compromised his work on the upcoming 'Tomorrowland,' so he was forced to turn it down:
We were already deeply into ['Tomorrowland']. George [Clooney] had committed to it, and we were down the road a bit. For a moment there, I thought that it would work out to do this and go right into ['Episode VII']. It was supposed to be summer of this coming year. There was no way to make that schedule and give this film the attention that it deserved, so I had to step away.
Bird would have been an excellent choice to helm 'Star Wars: Episode 7,' but we have to give him serious props for refusing to risk derailing 'Tomorrowland' for the chance to direct. Hey, maybe Lucasfilm can give him one of those many spin-off films they're planning...
Meanwhile, Lucasfilm honcho Kathleen Kennedy revealed that 'Star Wars: Episode 7' has three weeks of filming left:
Speaking at the event, Kennedy recalled meeting U.K. government representatives in February last year to discuss filming the latest Star Wars in London, revealing that Disney was now just “three weeks off” finishing the film and hinting that further titles in the franchise would be shot in the city.
“This continues a long tradition of Star Wars movies being made in London. It goes back to 1976, and to know that we are now coming back and we will be making the movies once again based out of Pinewood, and now we’re looking to put together this studio, it’s rather remarkable that this has all come together in less than two years,” she said.
Maybe, just maybe, we'll get to see something official from the film to mark the end of production. Maybe a brief plot synopsis? A picture of the cast in costume. Something. Anything! Help us out here, J.J. Abrams!
And now, let's scrape the bottom of the news barrel! It seems that a TV chef filming at the same studio as 'Star Wars: Episode 7' set off a smoke alarm, forcing everyone in the area to evacuate:
The highly-anticipated blockbuster, Star Wars: Episode VII, is being filmed at Pinewood Studios in Buckinghamshire, but the shoot was disrupted over the weekend (11-12Oct14) when a TV chef working on a neighbouring set triggered smoke detectors.
Editors at the Sunday Mirror report the cook, Tom Kitchin, triggered the alert as he was working on a dish for a TV show, causing chaos for the cast and crew on the nearby Star Wars set.
A source tells the newspaper, “It was complete bedlam as the fire alarms in the studio went off but we didn’t realise they would automatically set off the alarm system throughout the entire building where other people were filming too. The whole Pinewood complex was shut down until security had isolated the cause of the problem. Everyone had to go outside and wait until we got clearance to continue filming. Star Wars is in one of the other studios at the moment so they must have wondered what was happening.”
Spice this news up in your brain by imagining an exodus of aliens and stormtroopers hanging around outside of a soundstage, cursing the name of the chef that has forced them out into the open air in their costumes.
'Star Wars: Episode 7' Art and Characters Described
Although we're not going to post all of that super-spoilery concept art, we're not above posting written descriptions of non-spoilery concept art assembled by the always valuable Making Star Wars. First up, the site posted a detailed description of six characters standing against a white backdrop. Here's one:
The first fighter is male, early twenties, he has Adam Driver’s haircut, longer, and kind of swooped to the side. Dark hair. He wears a mustard tunic, closed, with a black best. He has dark brown pants. He wears boots but the ankles are wrapped in white like Anakin Skywalker’s in The Phantom Menace. He looks directly at the camera, blaster in hand and at his side.
For the full description of each character, make sure you check out the link above. Here's one more for good measure:
The sixth and final fighter is a male. He looks like he belongs in Duran Duran’s “Wild Boys” video with a new wave hair cut swooped to the side, covering his left eye and sort of longer in the back. His tunic is red. It has an opening so the belt can go into the sides of the tunic but the belt is not showing in the front. His hair is very emo. He has a blaster in his hand similar to the ones the old Kenner figures had like the TIE pilot. His pants are dark and his leg wraps are a dingy dark green with black boots.
They also provided a description of a villainous character, but it's unclear if it's a major antagonist of just a henchman:
The helmet looks like a samurai helmet. If you took Shredder from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and removed all the ornate additions from the helmet, you could have something similar. The back is kind of like Vader’s helmet but it is short, it just protects the back of the head, leaving the neck exposed. The face is covered. But you can see the eyes. This costume is Darth Vader if he were a ninja. Where the eye holes are, there is some light colored design. It has a good vibe about it. It reminds me of Shredder, a little bit of someone from Cobra in the old G.I. Joe and he has a black flowing cloak and red lightsaber which makes it look very cool.
And finally, they got a look at one of the new TIE Fighters that will be featured in the film. It sounds like the changes and additions are minor, but pretty cool:
The new Special Forces TIE Fighter is very much the same classic TIE Fighter from the front. But it is black. It isn’t a dull black either, it kind of a shiny black on the body, closer to Darth Vader’s shine than the classic dark TIE Fighter dull black paint. The wings are exactly the same as the TIE wings we’ve seen in the past. The distinguishing feature on these new TIEs is the red markings near the glass cockpit. It is painted red. If the front of the TIE was a clock, two, three, and four o’clock are red on the right. On the left, eight, nine, and ten o’clock are red in that area. The same goes for the back of the fighter.
We imagine this will be the first of many new ships introduced in the film. After all, Disney has a lucrative toy business to exploit.
Updates on That Rumored Obi-Wan Spin-Off
Remember those rumors of Obi-Wan Kenobi getting his own spin-off movie from a few weeks ago? Well, they keep on getting crazier. We've yet to hear anything official (or even any confirmations), but it all makes sense. Fans love Obi-Wan and Ewan McGregor isn't all that busy. Why not? It's not like the prequels actually gave McGregor much to do with the this character. A spin-off film may actually give him something interesting to do.
Anyway, the new rumor is that Lucasfilm and Disney are discussing not just one Obi-Wan movie, but three of them:
First up, they are not talking about an Obi-Wan spin-off movie but a trilogy of Obi-Wan movies. I need to stress that these movies are not connected. They aren’t part of a story arc but 3 separate Obi-Wan adventures set between Episodes III and IV.
It's all, well, a little hard to believe. It all sounds great, but it also sounds way too fan fiction-y. Case in point:
It seems like the 3 movie ideas are as follows: One set completely on Tatooine and two where Obi-Wan travels elsewhere in the Galaxy. Qui-Gon Jinn is very much present in these stories. So too is Owen Lars. Several characters from The Clone Wars T.V show would make an appearance. There would be flashbacks to Obi-Wan fighting in the Clone Wars.
We'd watch those movies, but would Disney actually make them? Who knows? If these movies ever happen, they're still years away. We'll wait for something more official before we start getting too excited.
And while we're here, enjoy this little conspiracy theory: Ewan McGregor is not in talks to play 'Doctor Strange' for Marvel (as has been rumored all over the internet), but he's actually negotiating his Obi-Wan movie:
Ewan McGregor has found his name put on a very select list of actors who are reportedly being considered for the role of Marvel’s Doctor Strange. Whilst this may still be true, the report claims Ewan McGregor is being groomed for the role of Stephen Strange and that a meeting is to take place between Marvel and McGregor to determine if he’d be interested in playing the Sorcerer Supreme. We have been told this is not quite accurate. According to the source the meeting is in fact between Disney and Ewan McGregor where they will discuss the possibility of the actor reprising his role as Obi-Wan Kenobi in the rumoured Star wars spin-off trilogy.
And finally, Joel Edgerton recently chatted about 'Star Wars,' his role as the young Uncle Owen in the prequels and his desire to return to the universe. It's a lively interview and Edgerton is quite the raconteur. Here's a snippet:
I’ll tell you my one dream when it came to “Star Wars”… It was the only time in my life where a dream came true that I’ve never had. It was such a crazy kind of fantasy that came true, so crazy that I’d never even had the fantasy. “One day I’ll get to be in ‘Star Wars,’ that was not even a sentence that would ever pop out of my mouth, yet all of the sudden it was like, “Oh, they’re shooting more ‘Star Wars’ movies, and they’re doing it in Sydney and God you look a little like that guy.” It was the perfect storm, then that was me and I got to live that dream. Now, in the spirit of complaining when you have no right to complain, in the back of my mind I was envious of my brother because my brother was doubling Ewan. At the time my brother’s main gig was as a stunt guy, so he did all the more dangerous elements of the fighting for Ewan. So he was a Jedi. My brother and I were both working in “Star Wars,” and he was a Jedi and I was a moisture farmer. (laughs) I was just like “Awww! The only thing better than what I’m doing right now is if I had a bigger role in the thing, but also if I had a f**kin’ lightsaber!” You know what I mean?
Great, now we're picturing a movie where Obi-Wan and Owen buddy cop their way around Tattooine, kicking ass and solving mysteries. Now we're suddenly excited for this completely nonexistent movie.
Here's Your First Look at Darth Vader in 'Star Wars Rebels'
Last week, we learned that Darth Vader was going to be added to the first episode of 'Star Wars Rebels' for its encore airing. And here he is, revealed by David Prowse himself:
Meanwhile, 'Star Wars Rebels' is already planning to go multimedia. The character of Kanan Jarrus, the series' token Jedi, will be getting his own comic book detailing how he survived the events of 'Star Wars: Episode III.' According to The Hollywood Reporter:
The new series will focus on the backstory of the character, explaining how he survived the Jedi cull as seen in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith and what changed him from the sincere Caleb Dume into the sarcastic, bitter Kanan Jarrus. The first storyline will be written by Greg Weisman, writer and executive producer for the first season of the animated series, with art by Thor‘s Pepe Larraz.
Didn't make it out to New York Comic-Con? That's okay. The exclusive clip that premiered there is now online for you viewing pleasure.
But wait! There's more! Here two new TV spots teasing the rest of the season.
And Everything Else...
'Empire Uncut,' the fan recreated version of 'The Empire Strikes Back,' is now online and you should watch it. Like 'Star Wars Uncut,' it's a funny, strange and genuinely fascinating tribute to one of the most beloved films of all time.
In news that will delight all of the nerds in the audience, James Luceno's upcoming novel 'Tarkin' will answer the biggest question in the history of the 'Star Wars' universe. SPOILER ALERT!
Emperor Palpatine's first name is Sheev. Moving on!
Finally, if you don't want to feel like an old person, don't read this tweet from Simon Pegg: