WookieeLeaks: That New ‘Star Wars’ Comic is Pretty Good
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, we take a look at the new ‘Star Wars’ comic, Gary Whitta departs the first ‘Star Wars’ spin-off, and Warwick Davis reveals selfies taken on the set of ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens.’
Let’s Talk About Marvel’s New ‘Star Wars’ Comic
Marvel’s new ‘Star Wars’ comic hit shelves today and it’s kind of a big deal.
After years of Dark Horse controlling the license, the saga is back “home” with the company that created the first ‘Star Wars’ comic books and some fans are not happy. And can you blame ‘em? Disney has made it clear that the entire extended universe, including every panel published under the eye of Dark Horse, is no longer canon. Years of stories, both good and terrible, have vanished in the blink of an eye. Going forward, only content produced by the Lucasfilm/Disney/Marvel alliance is considered to have actually happened. ‘Star Wars’ #1 by writer Jason Aaron and artist John Cassaday has to not only please fans, it has to make up for the fact that so much (fictional) history has been lost while proving that Marvel and Disney’s new, tightly controlled universe is worthy.
If the first issue is any indication, things are off to a good start. Cassaday’s art is still solid (although it doesn’t quite reach his glory days of ‘Planetary’ and ‘Astonishing X-Men’), but Aaron really understands the voices of the characters he’s writing. The Han, Luke, Leia, and C-3PO seen here feel like they stepped out of the original trilogy. Heck, the entire project feels the first films, eschewing everything that could even remotely feel like it was part of the prequels. This feels like Disney’s first public attempt to seriously start scrubbing the prequel trilogy out of fans’ minds and it’s a nice start.
Yeah, it’s nice. Because if there’s one serious problem with ‘Star Wars’ #1 it’s the decompression. Like so many modern comics, the issue only tells a sliver of a story ... despite the fact that it’s a larger-than-usual issue ... and that Marvel is charging $4.99 for it. Comic fans are used to being gouged like this, but more casual fans may want to wait for a collected version rather than read this month-to-month.
Still, this is a solid start for a ‘Star Wars’ comic book universe that looks very promising. The next two months will see the release of new Darth Vader and Princess Leia comics (which actually sound more intriguing than this ensemble book) and we’ll let you know if those are worth your time.
Ah, you’re just going to buy them no matter what, aren’t you?
George Lucas Was Threatening to Make ‘Star Wars: Episode 7’ at Some Point
For man who has had such a huge impact on popular culture, George Lucas remains an enigma wrapped in a mystery wrapped in a neckbeard. Who knows what this guy is thinking. Or what he’s doing. Or what kind of secret projects he’s working on behind closed doors. He’s essentially unknowable.
So while it’s surprising that he now says he was planning to make one more ‘Star Wars’ trilogy before he ultimately sold Lucasfilm to Disney, it’s not that surprising. Because on one level, of course he was.
We will probably never know exactly what Lucas’ ‘Star Wars: Episode 7’ would have been, but the director claims that he met with Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher a year before the Disney sale went through to discuss the project. However, he also says that he found himself totally outside of the loop once the sale went through, which makes perfect sense. Disney has made it pretty clear that they want the new movies to be as, uh, Lucas-free as possible.
But don’t feel too bad for Lucas. He claims that he’s ultimately very happy with how things turned out, especially since he’s a recently married man with a young daughter and that “the time is more important to me than the money” when it comes to personally making another ‘Star Wars’ movie. We wish him the best of luck in his post-‘Star Wars’ life and hope he continues being on the west coast’s most generous philanthropists. But it’s totally okay if he wants to stop putting his name on movies like ‘Strange Magic’
Gary Whitta Has Exited the First ‘Star Wars’ Spin-Off
Yes, screenwriter Gary Whitta has exited the first standalone ‘Star Wars’ film scheduled for 2016. Despite the outcry of “What can this possibly mean?!” from fans, the parting of the ways was totally amicable, with every party involved saying very nice things about each other as they walked in separate directions.
In the meantime, superstar screenwriter Simon Kinberg, who is also one of the chief creative forces behind ‘Star Wars Rebels,’ is supposedly being brought in to rewrite and polish Whitta’s script. Considering his involvement in the larger ‘Star Wars’ universe (he is part of Disney’s think tank for the franchise), this makes perfect sense.
Here’s the thing about major movies like this: everyone gets rewritten. For better or worse (and it’s always a little bit of both), studios like to put a lot of different people on scripts and let different creative voices tinker with what’s on the page. It’s standard practice. Whitta departing is only news because this is a ‘Star Wars’ movie. In fact, a new report says that Whitta was only under contract to write the first draft and he knew from the outset that he would step away after one year of writing and that someone else would step in. Among the other interesting details, it seems that his take is a wee-bit too expensive, which future writes will have to rectify. Here’s more:
We’ve heard from our sources that the change up is for a couple of reasons (both of which are amicable as we’ve been hearing), the first and foremost being that he was actually hired on to do ONLY the basic draft of the script.
The basic story for the standalone was already in place, being hammered out by a few people and run through the new Lucasfilm story-group (so that everything fits together nice and tight), and Whitta was brought on to create the script based on those ideas and generally flesh it out. That was his job, and he’s been hard at work on it for the last year, which likely means this isn’t the first draft he’s done. From there, he was set to move on (which apparently he’s been off for a few weeks now) and then have someone else come into finalize the script, polish it up, and generally make sure it’s the best it can be.
As for Simon Kinberg taking over (our source confirms Slashfilm’s report…which you should have believed anyway), our source has heard Whitta’s script was also too “big” budget-wise to film. His script would have been too expensive to film, so Kinberg will be tweaking things to make it more manageable. That being said, Whitta’s script/story will remain largely intact, with the rough spots ironed out.
Don’t feel bad for Whitta. He’s already hard at work writing the screenplay adaptation for ‘Starlight,’ a superhero comic written by Mark Millar. He’s going to be perfectly fine.
‘Star Wars Rebels,’ the Return of Lando Calrissian, and the Resurrection of ‘Star Wars: Detours’
It’s been rumored for some time, but this past week saw official confirmation: Billy Dee Williams will be returning to the ‘Star Wars’ saga ... in cartoon form. Yes, the suave smuggler Lando Calrissian will be putting in an appearance on ‘Star Wars Rebels,’ making him the fourth original trilogy character to pop up in the series. The news was initially broken by this tweet:
In the ‘Star Wars’ timeline, this is several years before Lando pulled himself out of his shady lifestyle to run Cloud City and ultimately destroy the second Death Star. He’s not quite the guy we know yet. Supervising director Dave Filoni had this to say about the character’s current position in the universe:
Lando’s very intelligent. We get him at ‘Star Wars Rebels’ at a point where he’s on his way up, hasn’t achieved it yet, which was exciting because he’s still working on all of his moves and all of his strategies.
And, of course, Williams chimed in, too.
This is a real good introduction to who he is, all the things you’ve heard about him.
Anyway, Lando’s episode airs on January 19, so make sure you set your DVRs. However, it is currently available for streaming online if you’re more of a 21st century kind of TV viewer.
Doe anyone else remember ‘Star Wars: Detours’? From the creators of ‘Robot Chicken,’ the CG-animated comedy show was intended to be a whirlwind comedic tour through the ‘Star Wars’ universe, crafting jokes out of just about everything it possible could. But it looked terrible. Really, really bad. Cringeworthy. For reasons that remain unclear, Lucasfilm decided to bury the show even though 39 episodes were already in the can (!). But now, a new rumor suggests that the series may still see the light of day ... and that, if it’s successful, there are an additional 62 finished scripts awaiting animation (!!):
Our sources are telling us that thirty episodes of Detours will be included as part of a massive digital release of Star Wars content in May of this year.
There is no indication that new episodes beyond the thirty nine already produced will be created, but where there is fan demand, who knows ... a further 62 scripts were finished.
Take that with a grain of salt until you hear something official. In the meantime, watch the original footage below to remind yourself why you weren’t excited for this in the first place.
Oscar Isaac Chats and Warwick Davis Shares
It’s a bummer that Oscar Isaac was shut out of this year’s Academy Awards for his work on ‘A Most Violent Year,’ but it must be a relief for him to no longer have to answer ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ questions while campaigning for trophies on the red carpet. So you really can’t blame him for getting super sarcastic with MTV when he confronted the latest round of questions he couldn’t answer:
First, he explains how to pronounce his character’s name. Important information!
Next, he tells us the biggest confirmation we’ve heard thus far: his character has legs. (Remember, we’ve only seen him shoulders-up in the X-Wing so far.)
“No, he gets out,” Isaac said. “Spoiler: he’s not only inside. Yeah. He has legs. Yeah. You got it out of me.”
However, Isaac did sit down with Dujour for a far more serious interview, where we once again answered as vaguely as possible because a Disney Hit Squad is trailing his ever move:
Not only are there these iconic props, but the sets, vehicles, droids and all these characters—you’re interacting with the characters that have been a part of everyone’s life for such a long time,” he says of Star Wars, for which he plays X-Wing fighter Poe Dameron. “Sometimes I pinch myself because it’s actually happening; it’s wild! But it’s funny, because you still have to do the same job you’re hired to do, which is between ‘action’ and ‘cut’ to be alive, be truthful and tell the story.
While Isaac was being vague with words, Warwick Davis decided to be vague with photos, revealing two selfies that he claims are from the ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ set. One features Chewbacca (who is definitely in the movie), but the other seems to feature the the long-dead Darth Vader. Does this confirm the rumor that the film will feature a flashback to the original trilogy or is he just screwing with us? UPDATE: He was just screwing with us. Davis later tweeted that the pics were not from the 'Episode 7' set.
In a display of ultimate nerdery, this guy with way too much time on his hands used his construction skills to prove that Kylo Ren’s wacky lightsaber could actually work.
Place your bets: bookmakers say that ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ is the favorite to be the highest grossing film of 2015. So if you’re a ‘Star Wars’ fan and a gambling addict, this is your lucky day!