The Star Wars News Roundup – 2.21.14


The purpose of this roundup is to put the highlights of all things Star Wars from the last week in one location. If you read this each week, you should be able to converse fluently with any Star Wars fan on everything from the latest Star Wars: Episode VII developments to the latest toys. And maybe you’ll even share with them something that they might have missed.

Let’s get to it!

Episode VII and Spinoff News and Rumors

Time Out London asked Tom Hiddleston about the “Episode VII” rumors:

Speaking of McGregor, rumour has it you could be offered a role in the new ‘Star Wars’ movies.

‘Well, that hasn’t happened yet. It’d be very flattering, of course. I did talk to Ewan about it once. When they asked if he wanted to be Obi-Wan Kenobi he said: “Are you joking? Of course!” But his experience didn’t live up to the promise. Besides, I imagine they’re looking for people who don’t have an association elsewhere. The audience need to believe in the character, rather than saying, “Oh look, Loki with a lightsaber!”’ reports that Daryl McCormack auditioned, but did not get a role:

Although he narrowly missed out on the role, he’s been told he’s now on the Hollywood casting agents’ books for future projects – as they loved him on screen.

“It came down to experience mostly,” Daryl told the Herald.

“I got through as far as I could and that’s amazing, I’m thrilled about that.”

It all started when he turned up to Croke Park last November for an open casting and within hours had turned producers’ heads.

“After the first stage there was a call back that afternoon and we had to play out a scene from ‘The Hunger Games’ to the camera,” he said.

“A couple of weeks later they rang me to record two scenes from the actual ‘Star Wars’ film for them and send it over. I had almost forgotten about it at that point so I was delighted.”

Daryl had to sign a confidentiality agreement not to reveal any details about the scenes he was given, as producers want the storyline to be kept a surprise for fans when it is released in 2015.

“In January there were the final call backs in London and I was one of them,” Daryl said.

“There were very few of us there and it was a fantastic experience – we were in a proper studio acting out scenes from the movie.”

AICN reports that Transformers: Age of Extinction star Jack Raynor may have a role:

I’m hearing that Jack Reynor, a young Irish actor that will be in this new Bay TRANSFORMERS trilogy – but that I’ve now heard from two different sources has landed a role in EPISODE VII. No idea of what role, but here he is:

Den of Geek reports that there is an upcoming casting call for the role of….Princess Leia?

Firstly, a good source has told us that auditions are ongoing for key roles in the new film, and that more are taking place in the UK at the end of this month. Furthermore, we understand that one of the roles available is Princess Leia – or at least that’s what one or two of those auditioning are being told.

Carrie Fisher is pretty certain to reprise the role of Leia in Star Wars: Episode VII, so it may be that a younger version of the character is being cast for a flashback sequence, or perhaps as a daughter of Han and Leia. Obviously, we’re speculating there, and it may just be that what those auditioning are being told is a smokescreen of sort. We’ll find out in due course.

Den of Geek also reported on some rumors that the model makers at Pinewood have been busy and may continue being busy for a while:

There’s been a security clampdown in the prop shop at Pinewood Studios, but we now understand that work is afoot on building a full scale Millennium Falcon there. Furthermore, model makers are also building lightsaber hilts. This would tie into reports that the emphasis is going to be on practical, rather than computer effects wherever possible with future Star Wars films.

Also, we now understand that model makers on the Star Wars: Episode 7 project are being recruited on up to seven year contracts, which cover three sequels and three spin-offs.

There’s one more thing too, and we went back to double check this point with our source. The planning office is listing which stages are booked in advance, and for what film. Listed on those plans – before Christmas at least – was Indiana Jones 5.

Visit the link for more!

And if you’re looking for a good snapshot of the rumors to date, check out Empire Online:

(Photo Credit: Getty Images)


There was an absolute blitz of “Star Wars Rebels” news this week.

TV Guide introduced the character Ezra.

When we meet Ezra, he has little interest in becoming a revolutionary. The suave teen has been living on his own on the planet Lothal and is just starting to learn how to use his mysterious new powers. “To survive, instinctively every now and then when he’s in a jam he uses the Force,” exec producer Dave Filoni says in the exclusive preview video below. “He doesn’t call it that. He doesn’t know that’s what he’s doing. He thinks he’s got some abilities that are a little strange every now and then, but they help him out. It’s instinctive, it’s reactionary.”

As Darth Vader and Co. begin to expand their grip on the Outer Rim, Ezra will be drawn into the burgeoning rebel alliance. “With Ezra we see how a kid is reacting to this imperial rule,” Filoni tells TV Guide Magazine. “That becomes a big question: What is imperial rule like? We’ve seen it in the movies with a big rebellion that ends up blowing up the Death Star, but do we just assume that when the Empire took over in Revenge of the Sith it was seen as a bad thing? I would challenge that. It wasn’t this terrible thing that came in and was cruel to everyone all at once. It was slow to build its power base and spread out, and then we get to see the rebel alliance it affects, and the repercussions of that tyranny.”

Ezra is played by Taylor Gray, who starred in the Nickelodeon series Bucket & Skinner’s Epic Adventures. “I’m excited to voice the role of Ezra in Star Wars Rebels but I’m even more excited to be a part of the Star Wars legacy,” Gray says. “I can’t wait for fans new and existing to come together and see the next chapter in the most legendary tale known in the galaxy.”

Also introduced this week was the character Zeb over at IGN:

Every team needs a tough guy. Introducing Zeb, the (smart) muscle of the Ghost crew from Lucasfilm’s upcoming animated series Star Wars Rebels. He is revealed for the first time in this video, featuring concept art, clay sculpts, and final renderings of the character, in addition to creator interviews.

Zeb is a well-trained honor guard and is highly educated, according to executive producer Dave Filoni, which juxtaposes his brutish, alien appearance. He’s voiced by Steve Blum, who says, “He’s got a bit of a chip on his shoulder, hates Chopper…and is starting to build a relationship with Ezra, begrudgingly.”

Zeb’s favorite pastime: beating up Stormtroopers, or “bucket heads,” as he’s heard calling them. He’s an agile fighter, using his hands, feet, and acrobatics. But there is more to Zeb than pounding Imperials. “It’s just going to be exciting to develop him and his bizarre new species,” says Filoni, “and to explain to the audience where he came from.”

The Hollywood Reporter debuted the character Sabine:

Actress Tiya Sircar will voice the character, the first female to be introduced from the upcoming animated television series, The Hollywood Reporter exclusively reveals.

Who is Sabine? She is a Mandalorian, and is described as “sassy,” “spunky,” “feisty” and has “a little bit of attitude.” She has an expert’s knowledge of weapons and arms, with an affinity for blowing things up. “She does it with flair,” Sircar says of Sabine, who also moonlights as a graffiti artist.

“She’s definitely one who’s turned against the Empire and that’s going to be to the Rebels’ benefit,” says executive producer Dave Filoni in the behind-the-scenes featurette above. As Joel Aron, CG supervisor of lighting and FX, says, “She’s adding something that we haven’t really seen before in the Star Wars universe. You have a character that is expressively creative through art — whether it’s the color of her hair or what she’s done to her armor.”

Rounding out the lead characters is Hera. She was debuted at Entertainment Weekly:

Hera is the heart of the Ghost crew from Star Wars Rebels. The Twi’lek is an ace pilot, able fighter, and is revealed to fans in this behind-the-scenes video featuring creator interviews, character sketches, and animation previews.

Hera is voiced by Vanessa Marshall, and is an especially gifted pilot. “I think she really makes flying the Ghost look easy,” says Joel Aron, CG supervisor. And while she’s strong-willed, Hera also keeps the group together, and can be warm and nurturing. “She knows how to talk to them to get the best out of themselves and to be part of that team,” Aron says. “That to me is the commander of a ship.”

Hera wears “utilitarian flight gear,” orange in color, with her Twi’lek head-tails hanging down her back. She’s not particularly glamorous, and is just focused on getting the job done. Like every member of the Ghost team, she has her reasons for rebelling against the Empire. Uncovering those reasons will be part of the Star Wars Rebels story, says executive producer Dave Filoni.

“Every time we get a script,” says Marshall, “I am breathless with anticipation. I cannot wait to read what’s next because I want to see where we’re going, too.”

Star Wars Rebels: “Spark” Teaser

Star Wars Rebels: “Ignite” Teaser

Our first look at Darth Vader from “Star Wars Rebels” may have also been glimpsed at Toy Fair:

There is also reason to believe that Brent Spiner may have a role in “Star Wars Rebels” based on this tweet:

Around The Web

Leonard Nimoy introduces “Return of the Jedi”

Lucasfilm: The Creative Gene – Go inside Lucasfilm’s culture of innovation in this special video presentation, featuring Industrial Light & Magic’s Dennis Muren and John Goodson.

Lucasfilm: The Creative Gene on Disney Video

Fan Correction: Admiral Ackbar Isn’t Pronounced Like That! – Star Wars Actor Christopher Malcolm Has Died – See Ottoman-Style Posters of Star Wars, The Godfather, Scarface and Other Classic Movies


Daily Mail – May the Force build with you! Incredible pictures show Star Wars film recreated in LEGO

The Northen Echo – Star Wars figures sell for out-of-this-world prices

Newsarama – Exclusive: Hasbro Confirms HERA, SABINE Figures for STAR WARS REBELS

where are the figures of Sabine and Hera, the two female members of the crew?

We reached out directly to Hasbro and expressed the concern of fans. Luckily, they understand. The toy company’s representative confirmed exclusively to Newsarama that “Hasbro will release 3.75-inch figures of both Sabine and Hera, and the figures will be revealed at SDCC.”

Rebelscum – Toy Fair 2014: Hasbro’s Preview Event Rebels Presentation
Rebelscum – Toy Fair 2014: Hasbro’s Preview Event Black Series Presentation
Rebelscum – Toy Fair 2014: Hasbro’s Preview Event Black Series Gallery
Rebelscum – Toy Fair 2014: Hasbro’s Preview Event Star Wars Rebels
Rebelscum – Toy Fair 2014: Hasbro’s Star Wars Presentation
Rebelscum – Toy Fair 2014: The Kotobukiya Display
Rebelscum – Toy Fair 2014: Hasbro Presentation Images
Rebelscum – Toy Fair 2014: Kotobukiya Gallery
Rebelscum – Toy Fair 2014: Funko Gallery attended Toy Fair in New York this past week. Here is the report from the Hasbro presentation:

Star Wars Rebels

Disney is obviously very excited about all the developments with “Star Wars,” having bought Lucasfilm a few years back, but first up is the new Disney XD cartoon “Star Wars Rebels,” which comes out in the fall. Lots of information about the show has slowly been oozing out although there’s still a lot of questions.

Before Babcock could get too far into his presentation, the familiar “Star Wars” theme kicked in on the P.A. and Freddie Prinze Jr. came in followed by two Imperial Stormtroopers and they talked a bit about how Prinze got the audition to voice the role of Jedi Kanan, not realizing that he was auditioning for something “Star Wars”-related. He also said that they’re doing a lot of the voice-over work with all the actors in the room, and though they’re roughly halfway through the first season, he couldn’t say who else would be joininig him on the show. I expect we’ll be hearing more of the voice cast over the next few months. They showed off LEGO’s version of Kanan’s ride “The Ghost” and talked a bit more before Prinze headed out. Video of Prinze’s appearance below:

You can check out pictures of all the things Hasbro discussed above in the photo gallery below. Click on the photos for bigger versions! (All pictures by Wilson Morales)