It has only been one week since the news broke that another Star Wars trilogy is on the way, yet the media has already been buzzing with theories and speculation surrounding the forthcoming films. With Star Wars: Episode VII set to be released in 2015, be sure to check back to this page frequently as we keep you up to date on all of the news surrounding the project.
Last night at the premiere of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2, MTV reached out to producer Frank Marshall, who is married Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy, about whether he knew anything regarding the search for a Star Wars: Episode VII director.
Marshall responded, ”“I do (know) but I can’t reveal it, or I won’t be alive tomorrow.” Marshall went on to say that the search has been narrowed down to a “couple of candidates,” but made no mention of who made up the list or when we can expect an announcement. You can watch Marshall’s full interview here.
Reasoning: According to sources, Lucasfilm reached out to Trevorrow after seeing the director’s superb Safety Not Guaranteed. Apparently many people at Lucasfilm, including George Lucas himself, are major fans of the film. As a result, Lucas and Trevorrow met several months ago to discuss Star Wars: Episode VII.
Likelihood:This is clearly the strongest rumor to emerge thus far, given the source is credible. Though Trevorrow has only one film under his belt as a director, Safety Not Guaranteed successfully combined science fiction elements with strong characters. Furthermore, given the success of The Amazing Spider-Man with its indie director (Marc Webb, fresh off of (500) Days of Summer), a similar situation seems plausible.
Reasoning: About a week before Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm, it was reported that Matthew Vaughn would not be returning to direct a sequel to his highly successful X-Men: First Class, for reasons unexplained.
Likelihood:While Vaughn has proven himself in the comic book arena, it remains yet to be seen whether he jumped ship on X-Men in favor of Star Wars. Mark Millar, who wrote the Vaughn-directed Kick-Ass, has come out stating Vaughn left X-Men to direct The Secret Service instead.
*Update* This weekend Bird took to Twitter in order to put an end to the speculation regarding his involvement in Star Wars. In response to four fans, the director simply said a variation of “Not doing Star Wars,” and that he is instead focused on a different science fiction film, tentatively called 1952.
Ain’t It Cool News
Reason: This theory stems from Bird’s attachment to a spec script sold to Disney by Damon Lindelof called 1952. The theory speculates whether this project is actually a cover up for a new Star Wars film, based on the company involved and the project’s proximity with Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm.
Here is a great rundown on the theory (via Portland Mercury):
May 2011: Bob Iger and George Lucas begin discussing the sale of Lucasfilm to Disney.
June 2011: Damon Lindelof hired by Disney (for a 7 figure deal) to write a huge sci-fi epic for the studio. The project is named 1952, and nothing else is known about it.
August 2011: Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher are told by George Lucas at a Star Wars convention that the sequel trilogy is coming.
May 2012: Brad Bird is hired to direct the Lindelof 1952 project
June 2012: Kathleen Kennedy is named co-chair of Lucasfilm
October 2012: Disney and Lucasfilm close the deal, and immediately announce Star Wars: Episode VII for release in 2015, with Lucas as a “creative consultant” and Kennedy as the President of Lucasfilm. Kennedy specifically notes that they’ve been talking to “a couple of writers and they know where they want to go for the seventh movie.
Likelihood: Whether 1952 is in fact a Star Wars cover up or simply its own project remains yet to be seen. And while the detective-like analysis of the two projects’ coinciding timelines seems at least relatively plausible, an insider for 1952 recently spoke to First Showing, claiming the project is in no way connected to a Star Wars sequel. First Showing, however, declined to provide the name of the source, leading some to question the accuracy of the claim. Meanwhile, certain fans seem to favor this rumor over the others.
Reasoning: Snyder recently spoke with LAT about Star Wars: VII in which he declared, “I don’t think I’d be interested in [directing it].”
Likelihood:Sounds like the Man of Steel director wants nothing to do with the project, and even barring an astronomical paycheck it seems like he is an unlikely pick as the man to lead a new Star Wars adventure.
Reasoning: When asked whether he was interested in directing Star Wars VII Spielberg responded with, “No! No! It’s not my genre. It’s my best friend George’s genre.”
Likelihood: Spielberg seems pretty content with leaving his friend’s legacy alone.
Reasoning: In response to questions surrounding his interest in a new Star Wars film Tarantino responded with, “I could so care less, especially if Disney’s going to do it. I’m not interested in the Simon West version of Star Wars.
Likelihood: Tarantino appears to have zero interest in taking his talents to outer space.
Reasoning: When reached for comment on the forthcoming project Abrams said, “Look, Star Wars is one of my favorite movies of all time. I frankly feel that- I almost feel that, in a weird way, the opportunity for whomever it is to direct that movie, it comes with the burden of being that kind of iconic movie and series. I was never a big Star Trek fan growing up, so for me, working on Star Trek didn’t have any of that, you know, almost fatal sacrilege, and so, I am looking forward more than anyone to the next iterations of Star Wars, but I believe I will be going as a paying moviegoer!”
Likelihood: While Abrams is quick to point out his love for the franchise, he appears to be citing this as reasoning behind his lack of desire to take on the project.
Reasoning: Favreau recently spoke to Hollywood Life in which he revealed, “I think both J.J. and I come from a generation of people who formed our whole creative persona around what we experienced as kids from watching those films, and I have had the good fortune of working with George [Lucas] and around George, and whether it is doing a voice on Clone Wars, or being at the Skywalker Ranch mixing Iron Man so I have been very happy and lucky to just experience the culture that Lucas has created, both in my own life growing up as a kid and professional whether it was interviewing him at film festivals on stage, he is just a really wonderful, talented gifted guy who has changed the business so much, so I am just giddy, first and foremost as a fan, to see what happens with it. I think there is a lot of question marks of how they are going to do it, and who they are going to do it with, and what the story is going to be about; but to say that I am not excited about it is definitely an understatement. We’ll see.”
Likelihood: While the quote is quite vague, there is no shortage of enthusiasm stemming from Favreau’s words, which leads us to believe that should he be given an opportunity to direct a Star Wars film, it seems unlikely he would decline.
Guillermo Del Toro
Reasoning: When asked his take on the developing story Del Toro said, “You know, I saw it on the Internet, but I haven’t approached them, they haven’t formally approached me. I mean, I heard some rumblings, but to me it’s really- I have so many projects to discuss or think about. [For] something that is not a possibility yet, I don’t do that. You know, because I have so many things that I need to catch up with. If this becomes ever a reality, and there’s an approach to do it, I would then think about it, but- it’s like thinking if I want to date a supermodel. I don’t think about these things.”
Likelihood:As Del Toro states, no official approach has been made, though he does seem like he would strongly consider the project if given the chance.
Reasoning: When Huffington Post reached out to Johnston asking if he would be interested in directing ‘it,’ the Captain America director replied, “A lot would depend on what ‘it’ is. I am very glad to see Lucasfilm cranking up to get productive again, regardless of who ends up doing it.”
Likelihood:Though his response did nothing to suggest any sort of involvement in the project, Johnston’s name certainly belongs in the discussion given his previous relationship with Lucasfilm. Johnston previously worked as an effects illustrator on the original Star Wars, and as an art director on The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi.
Reasoning: Just days after the announcement of the forthcoming trilogy, TMZ caught Carrie Fisher at the airport and managed to squeeze out a few quick questions regarding her interest in the project. When asked if she would want to be in the new films, the original Star Wars actress responded with a simple “Yes.”
Likelihood:Without a story in place, it is certainly hard to speculate which characters will be seen in the films to come. However, despite Fisher’s uncertain tone in the video, it seems highly plausible that the original cast members may be given at least the option for a cameo if not a feature role.
Reasoning: With news outlets scrambling to gain information regarding the new Star Wars films, Entertainment Weekly secured a quote from a highly placed source that Ford is “open” to reprising his role of Han Solo in the upcoming films.
Likelihood:Given Ford’s famous disinterest in Star Wars related projects and celebrations, it is a bit quick to be expecting to see Han Solo return in future films. Furthermore, we have yet to hear from the actor directly. However, all that applies to Fisher also applies to Ford, and it would seem unlikely to see him be denied a part in the film should he request one.
Comic Book Resources
Reasoning: Smits, who portrayed Senator Bail Organa In Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith, responded to questions regarding his potential casting in a rather indifferent manner stating, “If they want to call, let them call.”
Likelihood:It seems the likelihood of Smits returning is relatively 50/50 at this point. Although it has been reported the new Star Wars will be an original story not adapted from any existing material, should the film choose to pick up after the original trilogy, Smits’ presence is highly unlikely given Senator Bail Organa is killed off in A New Hope.
*Update* According to StarWars.com, Ardnt has been confirmed as the official screenwriter for Star Wars: Episode VII.
Reasoning: The writer behind Toy Story 3 and Little Miss Sunshine has reportedly turned in a 50-page treatment for the sci-fi sequel.
Likelihood:Should the studio like what they see from the treatment, it seems likely Arndt will be given the job of producing a full-length screenplay. Arndt has proven to be a capable writer in the past and also has the upcoming films Oblivion and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire on his plate. Having worked with Disney before, Arndt appears to be the frontrunner.
Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg
Reasoning: Though the Star Wars camp has yet to make an official announcement, THR has reported that Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg have been tapped to both write and produce Episodes VIII and IX.
Kasdan is the writer behind Empire Strikes Back while Kinberg has writing and producing experience with the most recent X-Men films.