Kathleen Kennedy Says STAR WARS: EPISODE VII Within Three Weeks of Finishing Filming

by     Posted 3 days ago

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Industrial Light and Magic just celebrated the opening of its very first studio in the UK in preparation for post-production on Star Wars: Episode VII and during the event, Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy offered a brief status update on the production.  Apparently there’s only three more weeks left of shooting and from there, the new ILM location will begin working on visual and special effects for the film.

Star Wars: Episode VII is due in theaters on December 18, 2015 and stars John BoyegaDaisy RidleyHarrison FordAdam DriverMark HamillCarrie FisherLupita Nyong’o, Oscar IsaacDomhnall GleesonAndy SerkisGwendoline Christie and more.  Hit the jump for more on how the revival of the film franchise led to the opening of ILM London.

Rumor: J.J. Abrams Wants to Push STAR WARS 7 to May 2016, But Disney Holding Strong with 2015 Date

by     Posted 114 days ago

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We almost made it an entire week with only two Star Wars rumor stories, but alas, we’ve got one more to close out the week.  To be fair, this latest rumor does have some weight to it, if only to clear up confusion regarding the possibility of a release date delay.  As you well know, Harrison Ford recently injured his leg pretty badly on the set of Star Wars: Episode VII.  The actor will be out of commission for two months, which is a significant blow to the production as Han Solo is said to play a major role in director J.J. Abrams’ sequel.  On Monday, a rumor surfaced that filming could maybe be postponed due to the injury, but now word comes that Disney is adamant that Episode VII will be released on December 18, 2015—despite the fact that Abrams and producer Kathleen Kennedy have apparently been lobbying for a delay to May.  Hit the jump to read on.

STAR WARS: EPISODE VII: New Set Photo Released; Gareth Edwards’ STAR WARS Spin-Off to Shoot in the United Kingdom

by     Posted 130 days ago

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Presumably, Star Wars: Episode VII set photos will be few and far between.  They’ll either be leaked, or J.J. Abrams will leave a note akin to something you would leave if someone was stealing your lunch from the refrigerator every day.  However, when you’re the United Kingdom’s Chancellor of the Exchequer, you have a bit more leeway to take a photo from the set and tweet it out to your followers.  Forget any other governmental powers he may have (and I truly don’t know because I can live my life in total ignorance of British government).  Being able to get an authorized photo off the set of Star Wars: Episode VII is true power.  Kudos, United Kingdom’s Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne for snapping a photo with producer Kathleen Kennedy, Abrams, and R2-D2.

Hit the jump to check out the Star Wars: Episode VII image and to learn more about the production of Gareth Edward‘s Star Wars spin-off, and if you missed our earlier rumor roundup, click here.  Star Wars: Episode VII opens December 18, 2015.

Watch: How the CG Effects of JURASSIC PARK Changed Movies Forever

by     Posted 131 days ago

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Jurassic Park is undoubtedly one of the most influential films ever made, and not just for it’s impeccable direction and execution.  Along with T2: Judgment Day, Steven Spielberg’s “dinosaur adventure” ushered in the era of CG effects, making films like Life of Pi and Avatar possible.  As part of a new digital series from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, the 9-minue program “Moments That Changed The Movies: Jurassic Park” has been released online.  It’s a fascinating video that delves into how the decision to craft Spielberg’s dinosaurs digitally instead of with stop-motion animation came about, complete with retrospective interviews with the very people involved with the film early on—including producer Kathleen Kennedy.

With the sequel Jurassic World on the horizon, this is certainly a fun look back at the groundbreaking first film, especially given the overwhelming amount of CG used in today’s movie landscape.  Hit the jump to watch the video.

STAR WARS: EPISODE VII News: Reworked Script Has Original Trilogy Stars in the Leads; Michael Fassbender, Hugo Weaving Eyed for Roles

by     Posted 281 days ago

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Star Wars fans may want to sit down for this one.  While J.J. Abrams has now been onboard to direct Star Wars: Episode VII for nearly a year, solid news with regards to the pic has been very, very hard to come by.  As the film’s production start date looms closer, we all knew this was about to change, and last night we learned that Friday Night Lights actor Jesse Plemons is being eyed for a role in the pic. Now THR has dumped a huge quantity of info about the follow-up, including word that Michael Fassbender, Hugo Weaving, and Adam Driver are all being eyed for roles.  More interestingly, though, the script for Episode VII has apparently changed significantly since screenwriter Michael Arndt was pushed off the project, and the lead characters for Episode VII may now be the original trilogy stars: Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford.

Hit the jump for the Star Wars: Episode VII motherload.

J.J. Abrams Poses with R2-D2 from STAR WARS: EPISODE VII Workshop in New Image

by     Posted 339 days ago

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With an official release date of December 18, 2015 now set, director J.J. Abrams and his Star Wars: Episode VII team are working towards a firm deadline with production set to get underway early next year.  Just in case you thought Abrams and Co. were twiddling their thumbs, the Bad Robot twitter just unveiled a behind-the-scenes image of Abrams and producer Kathleen Kennedy posing with a rather familiar-looking robot in their workshop where pre-production on Episode VII is well underway.  It’s a fun teaser image that may or may not confirm that R2-D2 will make an appearance in the Star Wars sequel.

Hit the jump to take a look at the image, and if you’d like to submit a video audition to be in the film, click here.

STAR WARS: EPISODE VII Team Sought Delay to 2016; Disney Adamant about 2015 Release

by     Posted 353 days ago

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Making a movie is not an easy undertaking.  There’s extended development of the script, assembling the creative team, casting, the actual shooting of the film, editing, prolonged post-production work, and everything in between.  In most cases, this all adds up to about two years total on any given film.  In the case of something like Star Wars, bringing such a massive property to life is even more intense.  One year ago, Disney announced that it had purchased Lucasfilm and was planning a new trilogy of Star Wars films, with Episode VII due for release in 2015.  This January, J.J. Abrams was hired to direct the pic under the stewardship of producer Kathleen Kennedy.

Official news on the Episode VII front has been scant in the ensuing months, and last week we learned that Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan were taking over scripting duties from Michael Arndt, thus hinting at a script that is very much still in flux.  How can Episode VII still possibly be barreling towards a 2015 release date, then?  It turns out the Star Wars team actually requested a delay to 2016, but was denied.  Much more after the jump.

STAR WARS: EPISODE VII to Embrace Practical Effects in Combination with CG Says Kathleen Kennedy; John Williams Confirmed to Score New STAR WARS Trilogy

by     Posted 1 year, 82 days ago

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Bits of news about Star Wars: Episode VII continue to trickle in, including the addition of composer John Williams and the rumor that Zac Efron and Ryan Gosling are being eyed for the film’s lead role.  Today’s news comes more on the technical side, as it addresses the use of practical and CG effects that will be on display in the new sequel.  It’s an understatement to say that fans were displeased with the over-reliance on CG creatures, characters and locations in the prequel trilogy, especially when said digital creations replaced practical fan-favorites in the original films.  Kathleen Kennedy recently spoke about the FX plans for Star Wars: Episode VII going forward and it sounds as if the production is well aware of the CG elephant in the room.  Hit the jump to see what she had to say.

John Williams Confirmed to Score STAR WARS: EPISODE VII; Watch the Composer Discuss Returning to the Franchise

by     Posted 1 year, 84 days ago

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It’s officially official: John Williams will compose the score for Star Wars: Episode VII.  Months ago, Williams expressed his desire to craft the music for director J.J. Abrams’ upcoming film, and Abrams subsequently said that Williams would likely be composing the score “because he was there long before I was.”  Now, out of Star Wars Celebration in Europe, Williams has confirmed that he will indeed return to the franchise for Episode VII.  This marks a break in tradition for Abrams, as he has collaborated with composer Michael Giacchino on all of his previous films.  While I personally would’ve liked to hear Giacchino’s take on the Star Wars universe, Williams’ confirmation seems to be yet another signifier that Episode VII is very closely connected to the previous Star Wars films and won’t be some sort of “reboot.”

Hit the jump to watch Williams discuss coming back for Episode VII and meeting with Abrams and producer Kathleen Kennedy, and look for plenty more Star Wars news this weekend coming out of Star Wars Celebration in Europe.

Mark Hamill Talks STAR WARS and the New Trilogy; Hopes for a Balance Between CGI and Practical Effects

by     Posted 1 year, 166 days ago

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As part of this weekend’s celebration of “Star Wars Day”, a special screening of Return of the Jedi was hosted in Los Angeles by Entertainment Weekly, followed by a surprise Q&A with Mark Hamill.  As one can imagine, a great deal of the conversation revolved around the new trilogy and director J.J. Abrams’ upcoming Star Wars: Episode VII.  All signs have pointed to Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford all appearing in Episode VII in some capacity, and during the Q&A Hamill talked about the meeting he and Fisher had with George Lucas in which Lucas first told them about the new movies.  He also confirmed that he’s had one meeting with Episode VII producer Kathleen Kennedy about Abrams’ film, and talked about what he hopes to see in the new films.  Hit the jump for much, much more.

Producer Kathleen Kennedy Explains How She Got J.J. Abrams to Direct STAR WARS: EPISODE VII; Won’t Confirm 2015 Release

by     Posted 1 year, 262 days ago

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Last week, the speculation over who would direct Star Wars: Episode VII finally drew to a close as it was announced that J.J. Abrams had the job.  So how did producer Kathleen Kennedy woo Abrams to go from one major franchise to another?  In a recent profile on the LucasFilm head, THR explains how Kennedy managed to nab Abrams for one of Hollywood’s most-coveted directing gigs.  She summarized her big pitch: “Please do Star Wars.”  Of course, she had a little help by explaining that Oscar-winner Michael Arndt (Little Miss Sunshine) was writing the script, and writer-director Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi) was consulting.  According to Kennedy, Abrams “was flipping out when he found out that Michael and Larry were on the movie already.”

But he wasn’t sold quite yet.  Hit the jump for more including Kennedy’s hesitation regarding Star Wars: Episode VII hitting its previously-reported 2015 release.

It’s Official: J.J. Abrams Will Direct & Produce STAR WARS: EPISODE VII; Lawrence Kasdan & Simon Kinberg Consulting on the Film

by     Posted 1 year, 267 days ago

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Disney and Lucasfilm have now confirmed what we already knew: J.J. Abrams will direct Star Wars: Episode VII.  The press release was sent out this evening, announcing that Abrams will not only helm the new sequel, but he’ll also produce through Bad Robot with Bryan Burk.  The announcement includes quotes from both producer and Lucasfilm head Kathleen Kennedy and Mr. George Lucas himself, and here’s what Lucas had to say about the decision:

“I’ve consistently been impressed with J.J. as a filmmaker and storyteller.  He’s an ideal choice to direct the new Star Wars film and the legacy couldn’t be in better hands.”

Also of note, the press release adds that screenwriters Lawrence Kasdan (Empire Strikes Back) and Simon Kinberg (Sherlock Holmes) will be consulting on the project.  We previously learned that the two would have a hand in the scripts for further sequels/spinoffs, but it appears they’re also collaborating on Episode VIIMichael Arndt is writing the screenplay.  Hit the jump to read the full press release.

J.J. Abrams to Direct STAR WARS: EPISODE VII

by     Posted 1 year, 268 days ago

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It’s finally happened, folks.  After weeks of shortlist stories, rumors, and denials, it appears that J.J. Abrams will be directing Star Wars: Episode VII.  Lucasfilm Chief and Star Wars producer Kathleen Kennedy has apparently been courting Abrams for a while, and Abrams himself “revealed” in December that he turned down the directing gig because he’d “rather be in the audience not knowing what was coming, rather than being involved in the minutiae of making the film.”  So much for that.  Hit the jump for more, including who else was in contention for the job.

LINCOLN Special Features 20 Minutes of Behind-the-Scenes Footage with Commentary from Steven Spielberg, Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field and More

by     Posted 1 year, 276 days ago

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A new twenty-minute special on the making of Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln, titled, “Lincoln: An American Journey,” is now available to watch online.  The behind-the-scenes featurette chronicles the twelve-year journey to bring Lincoln to the screen with commentary from Spielberg, producer Kathleen Kennedy and stars Daniel Day-Lewis and Sally Field.  With twelve Academy Award nominations (the year’s highest), Lincoln is one of 2012′s standout pictures, therefore Lincoln: An American Journey is certainly worth a watch.  Hit the jump to check it out.

Watch George Lucas and Kathleen Kennedy Discuss Transitioning LucasFilm into the Future

by     Posted 1 year, 291 days ago

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When “the story of 2012” broke and it was announced that Disney was purchasing LucasFilm and starting work on a new series of Star Wars films, a bounty of pre-recorded material was released online.  One of the more interesting pieces was a video discussion with George Lucas and new LucasFilm head Kathleen Kennedy, and in the weeks following the announcement, the rest of the video has been released piecemeal.  The final portion of the video has finally been released online, and while those first few videos provided news bits and insight into the future of Star Wars, this one simply focuses on the transition period for both Lucas and Kennedy as Lucas departs his beloved company and Kennedy sets out on one hell of an ambitious venture.

Hit the jump to watch the final video.  Hopefully director news concerning Star Wars: Episode VII will be announced soon.

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