The Star Wars News Roundup – 6.27.14


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 News and Rumors

It seems like each week there’s some major new development with “Star Wars,” and this past week was no exception. Deadline broke news that Rian Johnson was going to write and direct “Episode VIII.”

Rarely have I seen the revival of a film franchise stir so much fervor as Star Wars, among hot young filmmakers who grew up loving George Lucas’ original film trilogy. In a bombshell move, I’m told that Lucasfilm is making a deal with Looper writer-director Rian Johnson to write and direct Star Wars Episodes VIII and IX. Essentially, that means that the intention is for Johnson to take the baton from JJ Abrams, who has gotten the space franchise off the ground and is right now helming Episode VII…

Joining him as producer will be Ram Bergman. Johnson made his directing debut on the respected indie Brick, and then jumped to mainstream science fiction by writing and directing Looper, an inventive time travel thriller that starred Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis. Bergman produced both of those films.

The Wrap then clarified that he’d write but not direct “Episode IX.”

Rian Johnson will write and direct the eighth “Star Wars” movie, inheriting the franchise from J.J. Abrams, according to two individuals with knowledge of the director’s plans. Johnson will also write the treatment for the ninth movie, but he will not direct it.

Rian posted the following on Twitter in response to the news:

The LA Times confirmed with Johnson’s spokesperson about the rumor:

“Looper” writer-director Rian Johnson will write and direct “Star Wars: Episode VIII” and pen a treatment for Episode IX, a spokesperson for Johnson confirmed to The Times.

Johnson, who broke out as a director at the Sundance Film Festival in 2005 with his independent film “Brick,” will take over George Lucas’ franchise from J.J. Abrams, who is currently shooting “Star Wars: Episode VII” in London.

Johnson’s producing partner Ram Bergman will join him on the film.

New York Post – Page Six – Oscar Isaac’s role in ‘Star Wars’ to be expanded after Ford injury?

With Harrison Ford temporarily out of commission on the set of J.J. Abrams’ highly anticipated “Star Wars: Episode VII,” Hollywood sources say that star Oscar Isaac’s role in the movie is being expanded.

Details of Isaac’s role have been kept strictly secret — but there’s speculation he plays a descendant or even the son of Ford’s Han Solo character, who has “an especially large role.” But after Ford was injured on the sci-fi epic’s set, spies say Isaac’s part is now being extended as a Plan B.

“They are now beefing up Oscar’s role to be bigger with Harrison injured,” said a source familiar with the project that’s currently shooting at London’s Pinewood Studios…

Reps for Disney said of Isaac’s role being expanded, “This is categorically not true.”

Domnhall Gleeson talks “Episode VII” role (sort of) at Universal Orlando:

Andy Serkis on “Star Wars” Secrecy:

Ain’t It Cool News added an update on the possible plot of the film:

Han Solo is pretty much the main character of EPISODE VII, leading a galaxy-wide search party for Luke Skywalker.

Badass Digest added some more info:

I had heard that Solo is the star of this Star Wars and that the old smuggler would be taking the new kids on a journey across the galaxy to find an old friend who had gone missing.

Making Star Wars – Plot rumors about John Boyega’s character in Star Wars: Episode VII!

A friend of ours has confirmed the obvious, John Boyega is playing “Thomas” and Daisy Ridley is playing “Rachel.” Those are code names from the casting call, not the names used in the film. We will hopefully have those character names sooner than later.

Yesterday we touched upon the rumor that John Boyega’s character is said to be an imperial of some kind. For this piece we will discuss John Boyega and Daisy Ridley’s characters by their audition names of “Thomas” and “Rachel.” The rumor is really making the rounds right now that he starts off as an evil trooper or pilot of some kind.

Visit the link for the full report.

Latino Review added some new rumors this week:

Details recently appeared online concerning “Mercenaries,” but who can these enemies of the Jedi be?

Mandalorians will make a big appearance in the upcoming sequel “Star Wars: Episode VII”…

Onto the next detail, a Sith Witch/Witches are in “”Star Wars: Episode VII.” We don’t know the name of the character(s) nor do we know if they’re loosely based on the Nightsisters of Dathomir, Dathomir of course being Darth Maul’s home world.

MTV – Fear Leads To Awesome: Why A Very ‘Nervous’ J.J. Abrams Is About To Make ‘Star Wars’ Magic

Director Matt Reeves knows a thing or two about terror.

As the filmmaker responsible for “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” and its untitled sequel, Reeves is in the thick of adapting one of his all-time favorite franchises for a mainstream audience with high expectations. The situation he’s found himself in is not unlike the situation that his longtime friend and colleague J.J. Abrams is in now with “Star Wars: Episode VII” — but if Abrams is anything like Reeves, fans can expect the director’s fear of the galaxy far, far away to yield some incredible results.

“I will say this: I haven’t seen him this excited or this nervous in a very long time,” Reeves told MTV’s Josh Horowitz during the Happy Sad Confused podcast. “And when he gets that level of fear, it means he’s about to do something exciting.”


Star Wars Rebels French Theatrical Trailer (Obi-Wan Kenobi)

Around The Web

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Star Wars Super 8 Animation Footage from The Empire Strikes Back (created by Joe Johnston in 1979)

Frozen Star Wars Parody Music Video

Star Wars (Guardians of the Galaxy Style!)


The Lucas Museum of Narrative Art (LMNA) today announced its intention to become a member of Chicago’s vibrant cultural arts scene by locating on the city’s Museum Campus. LMNA will be a gathering place to experience narrative art and the evolution of the visual image – from illustration to cinema to digital arts.

“We are honored to be partnering with the city of Chicago and the many cultural, educational and community groups that have come forward with ideas about how the LMNA will add to their work,” said George Lucas, the Museum’s founder. “I am humbled to be joining such an extraordinary museum community and to be creating the Museum in a city that has a long tradition of embracing the arts and architecture.”

“George Lucas has revolutionized the art of storytelling over the last four decades and we are honored to be the recipient of this incredible legacy investment that will allow everyone to learn about and experience narrative arts,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “Like Marshall Field, John G. Shedd and Max Adler before him, George’s philanthropy will inspire and educate for generations. No other museum like this exists in the world, making it a tremendous educational, cultural and job creation asset for all Chicagoans, as well as an unparalleled draw for international tourists.”

The LMNA, previously known as the Lucas Cultural Arts Museum, chose Chicago because of the quality of the site proposed by the city’s task force. The 17-acre site offers unparalleled visitor access. “Choosing Chicago is the right decision for the Museum, but a difficult decision for me personally because of my strong personal and professional roots in the Bay Area,” said Mr. Lucas, a native of Modesto, Ca. “I thank all Californians who reached out to me in support of the Museum.”

The Museum’s location, proposed by a task force appointed by Mayor Emanuel, was selected based on its accessibility to public transportation, ease of access from all parts of the city, potential to create significant new green space, and its ability to accommodate an iconic structure. The LMNA will transform the site by moving the existing parking spaces underground and replacing acres of asphalt with more parkland along the harbor. Architectural renderings for the proposed site will be presented to the City of Chicago in early fall.

“It is a great privilege for the Museum to be a custodian of this cherished land,” said Mr. Lucas, who hopes to open the LMNA in 2018.

To learn more about the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art and its collection visit us online at

Video Games

Disney Interactive – Limited Early Access Unveiled for ‘Star Wars:Commander,’ a New Combat Strategy Game for Mobile Devices

Star Wars™: Commander is an upcoming combat strategy game featuring characters, locations and technology from the Star Wars™universe. A limited early access to the game is being offered in select international markets on iOS and Android while rolling out globally later this summer for iOS, Android and Windows devices.

Books and Comics


Jelly Belly – Introducing Star Wars™ Collection from Jelly Belly

Gentle Giant – AT-AT Driver Vintage Jumbo Figure – SDCC 2014 Exclusive