While Star Wars: The Force Awakens will be widely available on home video tomorrow, production on the next installment in the franchise, Star Wars: Episode VIII is ongoing in London, and a new set photo teases a familiar face. The Force Awakens opened to enthusiastic box office and solid acclaim, but one character that many folks took issue with was that of Maz Kanata, the muddled former pirate and caretaker of an interstellar tavern. Not only was the CG design unconvincing, but the character herself made little sense, which was at least partly explained by the fact that the sequence had been heavily altered during reshoots. Moreover, Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong’o was completely wasted with this motion-capture performance that made little impression beyond being irksome.
So when it was announced the Nyong’o and Kanata would officially be back for Episode VIII, there was hope that writer/director Rian Johnson would right the ship, so to speak, and at least make the character substantial. We still have a long way to go before we find out, but Johnson shared a new image from the set of Episode VIII today that looks to give us a peek at a scene that involves Kanata.
It’s unclear if the scene being shot is capturing Kanata here on set, or is instead capturing a different character conversing with Kanata. Whatever the case, it’s kind of neat to get a look at how such a CG-intensive scene begins, and I’ll be very curious to see how Kanata figures into the plot of Episode VIII.
Check out the new set photo below. Star Wars: Episode VIII opens in theaters on December 15, 2017.
For more on Episode VIII, peruse our recent links below:
- 6 ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ Characters That Need to Up Their Game in ‘Episode VIII’
- New ‘Star Wars: Episode VIII’ Set Photo Teases a Familiar Ride
- ‘Star Wars: Episode VIII’: Daisy Ridley on Rian Johnson and the Film’s Secrecy
- ‘Star Wars: Episode VIII’ Working Title Revealed