STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS Director J.J. Abrams, Kathleen Kennedy, Chewbacca, and More Say “Thank You” for Donations

by     Posted 1 hour ago

star-wars-episode-7-chewbacca

Back in May when Star Wars: The Force Awakens started filming, director J.J. Abrams announced the “Force for Change” campaign, which invited fans to donate to support UNICEF in exchange for prizes and even a chance to have a cameo in the movie.  The winner of the cameo was announced in August, but even if you didn’t win, you still helped raised over $5 million dollars to support UNICEF programs.  And for that, Abrams, producer Kathleen Kennedy, crew members, R2-D2, and Chewbacca say “Thank you.”  I suppose C-3P0 was off somewhere being an ungrateful jerk, whining about something or other.  Fucking Threepio.

Hit the jump to check out the Star Wars: The Force Awakens thank you video.  The film opens December 18, 2015, and stars John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Lupita Nyong’o, Gwendoline Christie, Crystal Clarke, Pip Andersen, Domhnall Gleeson, Max von Sydow, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew and Kenny Baker.

STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS Character Names Revealed in Throwback Fashion

by     Posted 8 days ago

star-wars-the-force-awakens-character-names-images

Well this was certainly unexpected.  Filmmaker J.J. Abrams is known for his “mystery box” approach to movies; he lets as little information out as possible before the film’s release.  The teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens was the perfect way to both appease fans and tell them almost nothing—which is good!  I don’t want to know everything about a movie before it’s released, and I think most people feel the same way.  However, a year before the film hits theaters, Abrams and Co. have now cracked open the Star Wars mystery box a tad by unveiling the Star Wars: The Force Awakens character names in quite possibly the coolest way imaginable.  A collection of “vintage” Topps trading cards for The Force Awakens were released today that feature images of the characters we saw in the trailer complete with their specific character names.  Oscar Isaac is Poe Dameron!  The Masked Menace is Kylo Ren!  Daisy Ridley is not Kira!

Check out the Star Wars: The Force Awakens character names after the jump.  The film opens in theaters on December 18, 2015.

Disney’s STAR WARS Attractions to Be Based on New Sequels and Spinoffs, Not the Older Films

by     Posted 9 days ago

star-wars-theme-park-attractions-slice

When Disney bought Lucasfilm, it was obvious that the company would make the most of the acquisition by beefing up the Star Wars presence at the Disney theme parks.  Walt Disney Company chief Bob Iger just reiterated that the film franchise will make its way into parks throughout the world, but he also noted that in order to both “do this big” and do it right, it’ll take time.

Disney couldn’t just jump right into building new attractions immediately after the purchase of Lucasfilm.  The park designers had to wait until J.J. Abrams was ready to reveal plans for Star Wars: The Force Awakens because the new main attractions will be based on the new films, not the old ones.  Hit the jump for more on the Star Wars theme park attractions.

Over 40 STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS Images From the Trailer Show a Rebuilt Universe

by     Posted 21 days ago

star-wars-the-force-awakens-images

It’s not a bad job when you find yourself watching the Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer dozens of times on a Friday morning for work.  As a teaser, it’s fantastic.  I was a little disappointed not to see Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher or Harrison Ford, but I suppose J.J. Abrams wants to introduce us to the newer merits of his story first.  It contains a lot more action than I expected, that’s for sure.  The teaser was a million miles away from the “reveal of characters” scroll I was expecting, instead plummeting us into action on several different worlds and revealing the background of John Boyega‘s character.  This world feels tactile, lived in and not at all like the prequels.  All good stuff.

Hit the jump for Star Wars: The Force Awakens images.  The film is due in theaters on December 18th, 2015 and also stars Daisy RidleyAdam DriverLupita Nyong’o, Oscar IsaacDomhnall GleesonAndy SerkisGwendoline Christie and many more.  And be sure to check out the trailer if you haven’t already.

First STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS Trailer Reveals J.J. Abrams’ Sequel

by     Posted 21 days ago

star-wars-the-force-awakens-trailer

It’s here!  Disney has released the very first Star Wars: The Force Awakens for director J.J. Abrams‘ highly anticipated sequel, which falls into the franchise as Episode VII if anyone’s counting.  As far as teaser trailers go, this one is pretty incredible.  Abrams doesn’t simply rely on nostalgia to make this thing exciting, offering up tantalizing teases through some genuinely compelling filmmaking.  As far as character first-looks go, we can clearly see John BoyegaDaisy Ridley, and Oscar Isaac as seemingly “good guys” in full costume, and then an obscured baddie (Adam Driver?), complete with voiceover narration from Andy Serkis (not Benedict Cumberbatch).  The money shot of the Millennium Falcon is spectacular, and overall I’m extremely enthused to see a heavy reliance on practical locations and effects work.  This is great, great stuff.

Watch the debut Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer after the jump, and click here to check out some new hi-res images.  The film also stars Harrison FordMark HamillCarrie FisherLupita Nyong’o, Oscar IsaacDomhnall GleesonGwendoline ChristieMax Von Sydow, and more.  Star Wars: The Force Awakens opens in theaters on December 18, 2015.

John Oliver Shoots Salmon at Jon Stewart, David Letterman, J.J. Abrams on the STAR WARS Set, and Many More in Excellent LAST WEEK TONIGHT Clip

by     Posted 39 days ago

last-week-tonight-salmon-shooter-clip

The first season finale of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver aired last night on HBO, wrapping up a fantastic debut run of John Oliver’s comedic news program.  While I was initially a tad skeptical of The Daily Show alum Oliver striking out on his own with an HBO series in the vein of The Daily Show, I think he did a wonderful job of carving out his own kind of series that proved to be both incredibly funny and also enlightening.  Instead of just riffing on the week’s news stories, Oliver’s Last Week Tonight went one better and ventured into a kind of investigative journalism that saw his team doing in-depth research on topics ranging from payday loans to the suspect “non-profit” nature of the Miss America program.

During last night’s finale episode, Oliver ended things with a bit on a salmon shooter (a real thing) that was featured on CBS.  Oliver and the Last Week Tonight team put together their own “salmon shooter”, resulting in a glorious series of cameos from faces both familiar and unexpected—including a certain Star Wars appearance.  Watch the Last Week Tonight salmon shooter clip after the jump, and if you’ve never seen the show, I highly suggest checking it out on HBO Go.

J.J. Abrams Shot One Sequence in STAR WARS: EPISODE VII in IMAX

by     Posted 50 days ago

star-wars-episode-7-imax

Earlier this year, J.J. Abrams tweeted a picture of an IMAX camera from the set of Star Wars: Episode VII.  We knew the majority of the film was being shot in 35mm, but if you were hoping for IMAX to be a large (no pun intended) part of the movie, you’re going to be disappointed.

In an article largely about Interstellar and its use of IMAX, Variety dropped in a small tidbit from Episode VII:  “The benefits outweigh the headache of shooting on Imax cameras,” says Abrams, who used them for a single sequence in “Star Wars.” “The opportunity to have an action sequence for this movie done in Imax’s natural format was too delicious an idea to pass up. As a filmgoer, it’s something I want to see.”  Hit the jump for more.  Star Wars: Episode VII opens December 18, 2015.

Franchise Veteran Warwick Davis Will Return for STAR WARS: EPISODE VII

by     Posted 64 days ago

star-wars-episode-7-warwick-davis-slice

With the overabundance of Star Wars: Episode VII leaks and rumors floating around, it is so incredibly refreshing to get a legit bit of news straight from the official Star Wars YouTube page, and via an especially amusing video nonetheless.

Hit the jump to catch the must-see video announcing that Warwick Davis will return to the Star Wars film franchise for Episode VII.  The movie hits theaters on December 18, 2015 and also stars John BoyegaDaisy RidleyHarrison FordAdam DriverMark HamillCarrie FisherLupita Nyong’o, Oscar IsaacDomhnall GleesonAndy Serkis and Gwendoline Christie.

Brad Bird Talks Having to Pass on STAR WARS EPISODE VII to Finish TOMORROWLAND

by     Posted 67 days ago

star-wars-episode-7-brad-bird

The New York Comic Con marked the true arrival of director Brad Bird‘s new film Tomorrowland upon the global conscience.  While the picture won’t be out until May 22nd, we hadn’t seen anything from the film at all until the trailer and poster popped up at NYCC and Bird (along with co-writer Damon Lindelof) started doing press.  During that press Bird was asked what it was like to have to turn down Star Wars: Episode VII in order to work on his new film with George Clooney.  What’s even more interesting about this exchange is that it seems like Bird was also up for Episode VIII if you break down the timetable of his comments.

Hit the jump for more on Brad Bird and Star Wars: Episode 7, which J.J. Abrams is of course currently shooting. The film stars John BoyegaDaisy RidleyHarrison FordAdam DriverMark HamillCarrie FisherLupita Nyong’o, Oscar IsaacDomhnall GleesonAndy SerkisGwendoline Christie, Miltos YerolemouPeter MayhewAnthony DanielsKenny Baker, and Max von Sydow.  It opens on December 18th, 2015.

STAR TREK 3 Brings Oscar Winner Claudio Miranda Aboard as Cinematographer, Will Shoot in Vancouver and Seoul

by     Posted 77 days ago

star-trek-3-claudio-miranda

Now that we’re done, at least for a while, with the whole William Shatner cameo saga, we have some actual facts to report regarding Star Trek 3.  First of all, while the upcoming sequel will mostly be shot in Vancouver, British Columbia, some of it will in fact be lensed in Seoul, South Korea.  And it looks like Oscar winning cinematographer Claudio Miranda (Life of Pi, TRON: Legacy) will be joining writer/director Roberto Orci behind the camera. 

This marks the first time a Star Trek movie has ever been shot digitally.  Hit the jump for more on Star Trek 3.  The film is expected to shoot early next year for a release in the summer of 2016.

STAR TREK: THE COMPENDIUM Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 80 days ago

star-trek-the-compendium

Paramount committed an egregious faux pas last year with its release of Star Trek: Into Darkness by sprinkling different extras on different Blu-rays.  If you bought your disc at Target, you got one set of extras.  If you bought it at Best Buy, you got a different set.  If you wanted all of them, you basically had to buy multiple copies of the same movie, then vent your fiery wrath across the Internet.  Trekkies hit the roof and with good reason: it took the double-dipping crime to a whole new level.  The new Star Trek Compendium is intended to correct that issue, and I suppose it does… if you’re waiting for all those features in a single collection.  Unfortunately, it compounds the original sin with a whole new one and slaps a higher price on the results in the bargain.  That leaves a sour taste behind for a collection that should have come as a huge relief to long-suffering fans.  Hit the jump for my full review.

William Shatner Confirms J.J. Abrams Has Contacted Him About Appearing in STAR TREK 3

by     Posted 81 days ago

william-shatner-star-trek-3-cameo

For the past week, rumors have been swirling that William Shatner may finally get his wish of appearing in the rebooted Star Trek franchise by way of a role in Star Trek 3.  While Leonard Nimoy got a fairly significant role in J.J. Abrams’ 2009 film and an all-too-convenient part in the follow-up Star Trek Into Darkness, Shatner has been vocal about his displeasure at not having appeared in the new franchise.  Abrams and screenwriters Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman, and Damon Lindelof actually wrote a role for Shatner to reprise his role as Kirk at the end of Star Trek 2009, but subsequently dropped the scene because they felt it was too gimmicky.

A week ago, a rumor surfaced that Orci—who is now directing Trek 3has written a role for Shatner to appear in Star Trek 3.  Shatner subsequently played coy about the prospect, but this weekend he said “to hell with it” and flat-out confirmed that Abrams contacted him about appearing in Star Trek 3.  More on the potential William Shatner Star Trek 3 cameo after the jump.

STAR WARS EPISODE VII Concept Image Depicts Epic Lightsaber Duel

by     Posted 84 days ago

star-wars-episode-7-lightsaber-duel-image

Another day, another image from Star Wars: Episode VII, but this one just happens to be the best thing I’ve seen from the movie so far.  It depicts a lightsaber duel under the Millenium Falcon with a Darth Vader-like figure fighting a Rebel with a green lightsaber.  It’s epic looking, and for a second I get excited but then I remember the prequels and how flat they were visually (not to mention narratively).  Then I get excited all over again because there’s no way this will be like that, right? They can’t possibly make the same mistakes can they?

Yesterday we saw the Chrome Troopers (as a follow up to the new Stormtroopers and the costume designs for Han Solo).  But now we have this gorgeous image, besotted somewhat by an ill-conceived watermark on the part of the hosting site.  Hit the jump to take a look at the new Star Wars: Episode 7 lightsaber duel image.  The film stars John BoyegaDaisy RidleyHarrison FordAdam DriverMark HamillCarrie FisherLupita Nyong’o, Oscar IsaacDomhnall GleesonAndy SerkisGwendoline Christie, Miltos YerolemouPeter MayhewAnthony DanielsKenny Baker, and Max von Sydow.  It opens on December 18th, 2015.

William Shatner and Roberto Orci Respond to STAR TREK 3 Shatner/Leonard Nimoy Reunion Rumor

by     Posted 86 days ago

star-trek-william-shatner-leonard-nimoy-slice

Just two days ago, a rumor surfaced claiming that Roberto Orci was going to give squeezing William Shatner into the new Star Trek film franchise another go.  Leonard Nimoy made his way into both the 2009 Star Trek reboot and 2013’s Star Trek Into Darkness, however, Shatner’s scene from Star Trek was cut and he never became part of Star Trek Into Darkness either.

If the latest rumor is true, Shatner will finally get some screen time in Star Trek 3, but neither Shatner nor Orci are willing to confirm that the Shatner/Nimoy reunion is legit.  Hit the jump for their responses.

STAR TREK 3 Might Include William Shatner… If He Decides to Show Up

by     Posted 88 days ago

william-shatner-star-trek-3

I remember the friction between William Shatner and J.J. Abrams before the release of Star Trek reboot in 2009.  If I recall, there were some awkward exchanges (and even videos) bandied about regarding Shatner’s displeasure with his cameo being cut.  For whatever reason he didn’t appear in Star Trek Into Darkness either, but now there’s a sliver of hope to confuse the timeline even more in Star Trek 3.

Apparently writer/potential director Roberto Orci has written a part for him in the script (with the help of co-writers John D. Payne and Patrick McKay).  We already know that this Star Trek movie will actually take place in deep space (as opposed to San Francisco/the CAA courtyard) so it’s possibly the good news could keep rolling in.

Click Here