With Lucasfilm's new "Sandcrawler" building having just opened in Singapore, The Straits Times (via /Film and ToysREvil) managed to catch up with President Kathleen Kennedy, who teased some details about plans for the upcoming Star Wars: Episode VII and about the overall direction the franchise will be taking moving forward.
"There is no attempt being made to carry characters [from the standalone films] in and out of the saga episodes," she says. "Consequently, from the creative standpoint, it’s a roadmap that George made pretty clear... The canon that he created was the Star Wars saga. Right now, Episode Seven falls within that canon. The spinoff movies -- or we may come up with some other way to call those films -- they exist within that vast universe that he created."
It sounds like Kennedy is saying that, while the standalone films are set in the Star Wars universe, fans should expect the stories that they offer to go off in new directions and that ties between those films and future saga episodes are to be quite minimal.
Scripted by J.J. Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan, Star Wars: Episode VII is rumored to focus on a new generation of heroes and could include appearances by Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford in older incarnations of their beloved characters from the original Star Wars trilogy. The film is expected to begin shortly and will hit theaters on December 18, 2015.
You can check out The Straits Times' video of the new Lucasfilm building's grand opening in the player below: