Back in November, we reported that Zack Snyder wouldn’t be directing Star Wars: Episode VII. This remains true, but Vulture is now reporting the surprising news that Snyder will be involved in the upcoming Star Wars universe with a spin-off feature. As we previously reported, screenwriters Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg were working on scripts that could be part of the upcoming sequel trilogy or they could be spin-off features. Episode VII is due out in 2015, and Disney CEO Bob Iger has said he wants a new Star Wars movie ever 2-3 years.
Hit the jump for more on Zack Snyder’s upcoming Star Wars film. [Update: Snyder’s reps have released a statement denying this story. Read the statement after the jump]
According to Vulture, Snyder is developing a Star Wars film that will take place after Episode VI and run parallel to the upcoming trilogy, so it doesn’t seem like it will be a “bridge” movie, although it could provide material for other Star Wars chapters. But that’s getting ahead of ourselves.
Right now, we know that the plot will be loosely based on one of the greatest films of all time, Akira Kurosawa‘s 1954 masterpiece, Seven Samurai. So that’s not a bad place to start. For those unfamiliar with the plot, it involves a group of ronin being hired by a defenseless village to help fend off bandits. The film has been adapted numerous times over the years including the western The Magnificent Seven and Pixar’s A Bug’s Life. George Lucas has cited Seven Samurai as one of his all-time favorite movies, telling the Telegraph in 2005 “it’s a brilliant, brilliant film, and every time I see it I can’t believe the magic mixture of a great story and great acting and humour and action and suspense — wonderful cinema. The art of moving pictures is on every frame of this movie.”
What I find curious about this adaptation is that it takes place after Episode VI, but at the end of that movie, I don’t know how many Jedi are left in the galaxy (I always assumed two: Luke and Leia). Presumably, the new trilogy has to have enough distance from Return of the Jedi so that at least six new Jedi can populate the galaxy, and then you can have a pretender Jedi join them.
Filming on Snyder’s movie is set to begin after Disney gets to work on Star Wars: Episode VII. It’s worth noting that Vulture’s story only says Snyder is “developing” a Star Wars spin-off. He is not officially attached to direct at this point.
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Update: Snyder’s reps have released a statement denying that he’s involved with any of the Star Wars films, including the spinoffs, though I wouldn’t take this as absolute confirmation that the story is completely false. Read the statement below via Heat Vision:
“While he is super flattered because he is a huge fan, Zack is not involved in any way with the new Star Wars. He is currently in post on his two films, Man of Steel and 300: Battle of Artemisia.”