The Star Wars: Episode VII casting rumor mill has been so quiet for a few weeks that I was almost starting to miss it. Today, it’s fired back up with an exciting possibility. The latest actor rumored for a role in the movie is Jack O’Connell. O’Connell is mostly unknown to American audiences, but after seeing his work in Starred Up at TIFF, he’s definitely an actor to watch. He’s magnetic, charismatic, and could be on the verge of a big breakthrough when he stars in Angelina Jolie‘s adaptation of the bestselling book, Unbroken, which opens next Christmas.
Hit the jump for more on how O’Connell might be headed to a galaxy far, far away.
It’s no secret that director J.J. Abrams and producer Kathleen Kennedy are currently deep into the casting process on Star Wars: Episode VII. Saoirse Ronan herself admitted that nearly every actor her age was auditioning for the film, and even 12 Years a Slave star Chiwetel Ejiofor hinted that he’s up for a role. Now it appears that we have another actor to add to the “potential Star Wars star” pile, as Jason Flemyng (Snatch) has not-so-subtly revealed that he may be reading for a part. Flemyng’s connection to Episode VII actually goes all the way back to when Matthew Vaughn was in the mix for the director’s chair, as he sorta kinda confirmed that Vaughn might be taking the helm in a video interview.
Now Flemyng has posted an image on Instagram that he claims is the “script” for Star Wars: Episode VII. Hit the jump for more.
As if there was any doubt, R2-D2 will definitely be making an appearance in J.J. Abrams upcoming sequel Star Wars: Episode VII. Abrams’ production company Bad Robot recently teased an image of Abrams and producer Kathleen Kennedy standing alongside R2 in the Star Wars “workshop,” hinting at the droid’s appearance in the film, and now Variety has confirmed that R2 is in Episode VII. Moreover, the two other men in the photo are Lee Towersey and Oliver Steeples, members of the creature effects team for Episode VII. The two initially came into contact with Kennedy this summer in Germany, where they impressed her with the droids they built as part of the R2-D2 Builders Club. When it came time to staff up the effects team for Episode VII, Kennedy put in a good word for the duo.
Production on Star Wars: Episode VII will begin next spring in anticipation of a December 18, 2015 release date, but we still don’t have any confirmed cast members. That will likely change before Hollywood breaks for the holidays, so keep an eye out over the next month.
Disney and director J.J. Abrams are widening their search for actors to play characters in Star Wars: Episode VII. As Saoirse Ronan said about a month ago, they’re auditioning everyone in Hollywood, and now they’re auditioning anyone nationwide who wants to send in a video submission. Casting calls will still happen in the U.K. and a few U.S. cities, and there’s a possibility of a meet-and-greet with casting director Maryellen Aviano (Inception). I can only imagine the nightmare of who has to watch all of these even though they obviously won’t watch from start to finish, and they may not even start based on a headshot.
Hit the jump for more including descriptions of the roles, and how to submit an audition tape. Star Wars: Episode VII opens in 3D on December 18, 2015.
After much speculation, Disney has announced that J.J. Abrams‘ Star Wars: Episode VII will open in 3D on December 18, 2015. It will be the first Star Wars movie to be released outside of May. As we previously reported, Disney refused to move the film to 2016, and in order to meet the studio’s time frame, Abrams teamed up with screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back) to handle the script.
At first it seems like the move gives Disney some breathing room between Star Wars and the studio’s other 2015 behemoth, The Avengers: Age of Ultron. However, Disney has also announced that Brad Bird‘s Tomorrowland has been pushed from November 2014 to May 22, 2015, which is just three weeks after Joss Whedon’s highly-anticipated sequel and a week before Pixar’s Inside Out. Hit the jump for more.
A couple weeks ago, we learned that screenwriter Michael Arndt (Toy Story 3) had left Star Wars: Episode VII, and director J.J. Abrams would write the script with Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back). A week later, it was reported that although producer Kathleen Kennedy had sought to push the film’s release to 2016, but Disney refused to budge and held on to the previously-announced 2015 release. Now the two stories have converged with J.J. Abrams explaining that in order to meet the release date, they needed to bring in Kasdan.
Hit the jump for more. [Update: Disney has announced that Star Wars: Episode VII will be released in 3D on December 18, 2015]
The great thing about the current state of social media is just how fast and readily available information has become. So, for projects that are highly anticipated and equally highly guarded – like, say Star Wars: Episode VII, for example – we’ll take info where we can get it. Today’s unconfirmed rumors on the new Star Wars installment from director J.J. Abrams include evidence in support of a late 2015 release date, along with a casting call sheet that describes two of the film’s lead roles. Hit the jump for more.
The desperation for Star Wars: Episode VII casting news continues even though it’s kind of pointless. I tell you Actor X is in the movie, and what does that really mean? When that news finally comes, I seriously doubt it will come with any character details or even a name. At most, this speculation adds up to wanting talented actors whose name might be a draw but not too expensive such as Benedict Cumberbatch or Saoirse Ronan or the latest actor to possibly be connected to the project, Chiwetel Ejiofor. The 12 Years a Slave star is the current favorite to win the Oscar for Best Actor, and he was recently spotted in Bad Robot’s lobby. Yes, casting news based on physical proximity.
Hit the jump for more including how J.J. Abrams agrees with the “Four Rules” about Star Wars.
Michael Arndt (Toy Story 3) has had about a year to work on screenwriting duties for Star Wars: Episode VII, but now director-producer J.J. Abrams will take over, along with longtime writer and current consultant, Lawrence Kasdan. As the duo refines the script in advance of the film’s planned start date of spring 2014, work continues in the location scouting, production design, casting, and costume design departments.
Hit the jump for more details in the press release.
We’ve got a couple of Star Wars news bits for you this afternoon. The first up is for the new Star Wars animated series, Star Wars: Rebels. As we previously reported, Rebels takes place in the twenty years between Episode III and Episode IV and centers on the fledgling rebellion against the Empire as it hunts down the last of the Jedi Knights to secure rule of the galaxy. You can click here to watch the very brief teaser. Today at New York Comic-Con, Disney/Lucasfilm revealed a Soviet propaganda-style poster featuring stormtroopers and words written in Aurebesh. I hope the text reads, “Recruiting Now! Blaster marksmanship preferable, but not required.”
Hit the jump to read the official synopsis for Star Wars: Rebels as well as some rumored working titles for J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: Episode VII.
Almost one year ago, Disney bought Lucasfilm and announced the Star Wars sequel trilogy was underway. There was the assumption that Disney’s purchase had been the catalyst for the new trilogy, but a recent interview with George Lucas’ son, Jett, reveals his father had already started work on new episodes. “We knew probably a year prior (to the purchase) he had started writing and researching, starting his whole little process,” Jett Lucas told Flicks and the City. “About a year later was when the idea of selling to Disney came up…It’s nice because he’s happiest when he’s writing and doing something with his time.”
Hit the jump for more about George Lucas trying to let the franchise go, and the current status of his involvement.
A couple weeks ago, it was rumored that Saoirse Ronan had gone in to read for a role in J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: Episode VII. It was supposedly for one of the main characters and possibly the leading role. In a recent interview with Sky News, Ronan confirmed that she had indeed read for the role, but added “so has everyone.” And that’s the beauty of taking names, having meetings, and making lists. So many actors are going in and out to read for these roles, and then plenty of expectations are attached to them just by virtue of their name being mentioned at one point in the process. I’m a fan of Ronan’s past work, so I’d like her to bring her talent to a blockbuster film. I say this without knowing the character, the details of the plot, or how the two will fit together. But I like Ronan, so I’ll root for Ronan.
If you like actor Sullivan Stapleton, then hit the jump because he’s the latest actor to join the Star Wars rumor game.
We’ve been so caught up in wondering about the actors who might be in Star Wars: Episode VII that we’ve completely overlooked the multitude of alien races that might be in the film. One of the more appealing aspects of Star Wars is that the heroes aren’t all human, and perhaps Episode VII will continue that tradition. Den of Geek has reportedly found a casting call put out by “Walt Disney Pictures/LucasFilm/Bad Robot” for a:
“Male, 7 ft to 7.3 ft tall with a slim/thin build and upright posture. Not too worked out or too ‘thick set’ especially in the shoulders. Broad facial features would be a bonus”.
Den of Geek believes that because Chewbacca actor Peter Mayhew is 7′ 3″ tall, the production could be looking to cast an actor to play a wookie. Of course, assuming this casting call is even legit, we don’t know if it’s a wookie or perhaps some other tall alien. And what if they’re looking for someone to actually play Chewbacca and replace the 69-year-old Mayhew? Speculate away in the comments section.
Director J.J. Abrams is staying predictably tight-lipped about Star Wars: Episode VII, and at this point, I don’t really mind. We’re still at an relatively early stage, so this isn’t the “mystery box”. This is “the-movie-is-about-two-years-away”. EW, knowing that he wouldn’t go into any details, pitched him some more open-ended, non-specific questions about his general feelings regarding Star Wars and the upcoming sequel. As far as the previous six movies, he couldn’t really compare any of them to what he’s doing with Episode VII:
“Impossible for me to say because it’s going to be an evolving thing. I would say we are working really hard to make a movie that feels as emotional and authentic and exciting as possible. Whatever your favorite Star Wars movie is and how to compare it is really sort of subjective.”
Hit he jump for more. Star Wars: Episode VII opens in 2015.
Today in “Star Wars Rumors that Will Inevitable Spur Debate Based on Characters We Don’t Know”, the talented Saoirse Ronan may have the Force with her. According to Latino Review and independently supported by Bleeding Cool, Ronan has reportedly gone in to read for a lead role in Star Wars: Episode VII, and possibly “the lead role” in the upcoming sequel. Bleeding Cool notes that this isn’t a done deal, and there are other actresses with recognizable names who could get the part instead. Whether she gets the lead or a supporting role, I’m a fan of Ronan, and hopefully either female role is a good chance for her to break from her recent “Depressed Teen Looking for a Home” characters.
Hit the jump for more details on the rumor regarding Benedict Cumberbatch being in the sequel trilogy.