Throughout history no franchise has boomed like Star Wars. The original trilogy captured the attention of a generation, to such an extent that even today the trio of films are deemed classics.
Disney purchased Lucasfilms in order to bring Star Wars back from the dead... now, with Star Wars VII in post-production, we have all the information we’re likely to have before December 17th.
Over at Lucasfilms they’ve been enigmatic about the film: 3 months before the release date we barely know anything. So in the final rundown to Star Wars VII, let’s go through what we do know.
1. Abrams initially rejected Star Wars VII!
- With the incredible casting choices for The Force Awakens it's surreal that J.J. Abrams would reject an offer to direct, but it seems he considered himself too avid a fan. As revealed in ‘Hollywood Life.’
“[Abrams is] looking forward more than anyone to the next iterations of Star Wars, but I believe I will be going as a paying moviegoer!"
- However, despite this initial response, it seems Abrams decided he could do Star Wars justice, having joined the crew shortly after the interview.
2. Abrams has taken Star Wars back to its roots.
- Shots from the set of The Force Awakens have an ‘original trilogy’ feel. The trilogy were revolutionary in terms of cinematic technology, as stated by John Dykstra.
“Back in the days of Star Wars, we kind of walked into an empty warehouse and sat on the floor and went 'how are we going to do this?’”
- This ragtag team achieved the impossible, and with his use of models alongside modern technology, it seems Abrams has revived the heart of Star Wars, as was revealed at the 2015 San Diego Comic Con.
3. Harrison Ford sustained a serious injury on-set.
- On the set of Star Wars VII, Harrison Ford, aged seventy-two,broke his leg on board the Millennium Falcon. I suppose the veteran actor took the idiom ‘break a leg’ a little too seriously...
- You can’t fault his professionalism, as six weeks later he was back on his feet and filming, with no delays to the release date.
4. Mark Hamill also had a serious accident!
- Never to be outdone by his old colleague, Mark Hamill went above and beyond in getting himself injured; now that really is commitment! Reports are that he almost took a tumble off a cliff whilst filming on the Irish island of Skellig Michael!
- Okay, just kidding... the media blew the story out of proportion. Apparently he merely stumbled whilst climbing a hill.
- Sorry, I couldn’t resist.
5. The antagonist isn’t Sith.
- There have been Sith undertones throughout the Star Wars franchise, and this theme persists into the new generation.
- Unlike its predecessors, the primary antagonist of The Force Awakens – Kylo Ren, is not a Sith lord; rather it seems he has simply modelled himself after the Sith.
- We don’t know much about Kylo Ren, but it's likely he's played by Adam Driver, and even that he could be Han and Leia’s son! Now that would certainly be a new twist on an old story:
"Han, I am Your Son."
6. We’ll be introduced to new characters.
- We know that we’re getting: Luke, Leia, Han, Chewbacca, C-3P0 and R2D2, but it seems we’re also getting a storm trooper – Finn (John Boyega), a scavenger with a cool speeder – Rey (Daisy Ridley), and a pilot – Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac).
- Rumour has it that these three characters will be forced together and will serve as our protagonists.
7. Search for Skywalker.
- It seems we'll be introduced to the bulk – if not the entire – cast prior to Luke’s appearance.
- It's been theorised that Luke is guarding an ancient Sith tomb and even that he could turn to the dark side, but with so little information up for grabs it’s mostly fan speculation at this point.
- Personally, I like the idea of a self-exiled, bearded Luke serving as the Yoda of the rebooted franchise, but let us know what you think!
8. Discovery of a lightsaber.
- I’m afraid we’re delving further into speculation, but there have been repeated suggestions that the discovery of a lightsaber will trigger the narrative of Force Awakens.
- ‘Making Star Wars’ have suggested that a lightsaber crystal is discovered which can open or discover the secret Sith tomb currently under Luke’s protection. A little vague, but it’s interesting to think about and it would certainly seem appropriate.
- So yeah guys, breaking news, Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens, will involve lightsabers. Write it down, just so you don’t forget...
9. Kenny Baker is back as R2D2 for a seventh time!
- Kenny Baker will be returning for a seventh – and presumably eighth and ninth – time, as the enduring droid R2D2.
- It’s unknown what role R2D2 will play in the trilogy, other than a brief glimpse of R2D2 in the trailer with a hand similar to that of the Skywalker boys.
- The return of R2D2 was inevitable, unless Disney wanted to spark a riot from the fans, but it’s good to know Baker will be reprising his role.
10. The First Order and General Hux.
- The forces of the light side will find themselves pitted against the fractured remnants of the Empire.
- Out of the ashes of Emperor Palpatine’s reign have risen a series of factions, including the First Order and General Hux (Domhnall Gleeson). It’s unknown exactly what role Gleeson will play, but General Hux commands Starkiller Base, which fans might read as a wink to Luke Skywalker’s original character name ‘Starkiller’.
- With the First Order, General Hux, Starkiller base, and Kylo Ren to face-off against, it’s safe to assume that our heroes will not be relaxing in the absence of the Empire.
With the first of the trilogy to be released in December, followed by the eagerly awaited Rogue One, we’re on the fringe of experiencing the thrill felt back in 1977!
Whichever direction Disney take Star Wars, we have an exciting few years ahead: with an HD Millennium Falcon, the cast of the original trilogy, and not a Gungan in sight.