Welcome to our weekly Star Wars roundup! With Disney ramping up the franchise on all cylinders, there’s tons of exciting stuff in the way of news, rumors, and clips. We’ve picked out the best Star Wars stories the internet has to offer, bringing you everything you need to know about the world’s favorite sci-fi series.
1. Is Lucasfilm setting itself up for failure with a May release of Han Solo?
A lot of the recent news surrounding Lucasfilm’s Han Solo-led Anthology movie has been about the casting of Alden Ehrenreich. The young actor won out over a field of thousands of competitors, and now that we’re a month out from the announcement, other questions about the film have cropped up. What will the overall story of the movie be? Will it involve more younger versions of iconic characters? Are comedy directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller the right men for the job?
The answers we know (in order) are “not sure,” “probably just Chewie,” and “yeah those guys are awesome.” Beyond that though, we got our first bit of concrete information courtesy of franchise mainstay, Lawrence Kasdan. During a Q&A event, Kasdan revealed that Han Solo: A Star Wars Story would begin shooting in January 2017, aiming for a May 2018 release date. And if that sounds oddly familiar … well, it’s because it is.
If you’ll remember, Lucasfilm originally had Episode VIII slated for a May 2017 release, following the December 2016 premiere of Rogue One. It’s that same five-month turnaround that eventually led to Episode VIII getting pushed seven months, when the studio realized that a half-year gap between films didn’t afford them nearly enough time. Now, they’ll be doing the exact same thing between Episode VIII in December 2017 and Han Solo the following May. Here’s hoping this doesn’t lead to another delay from the studio…
2. Rogue One gets called in for reshoots in the 11th hour
The biggest Star Wars-related news this week concerns a different Anthology movie, with Rogue One getting called in for four weeks of reshoots. Rumors reported by Page Six claim “the execs at Disney are not happy with the movie,” and given the fact that we’re just seven months away from the release, this doesn’t exactly bode well. THR’s own sources tell them the hope in reshooting is “to lighten the mood, bring some levity into the story and restore a sense of fun to the adventure.”
While this all may seem grim for the future of Lucasfilm’s first try at a spinoff trilogy, there’s still a big, fat silver lining here. THR goes on to describe the deeper reasoning behind the reshoots, citing a need to match the tone of Rogue One with the original trilogy. “One source describes the cut as having the feel of a war movie,” something that doesn’t quite line up with some of the more lighthearted aspects of the series.
Adjusting the tone also isn’t the only goal the studio has in ordering reshoots. Alden Ehrenreich was cast as young Han Solo sometime in early May, which was well after principal photography had wrapped for Rogue One. With four weeks of reshoots on deck, they now have the freedom to insert Ehrenreich into the film for at least a cameo appearance, easing audiences into the first new Han Solo they’ve ever gotten, and leading right into his own film’s release in 2018.
3. Lucasfilm auctions off its vast collection of Star Wars props
It’s one thing to own Star Wars merchandise sold in stores. It’s been a pillar of the franchise for as long as it’s existed, often out-pacing the movies themselves when it comes to profits. Fans who want to take things to the next level though can now do just that, thanks to the folks over at Pinewood Studios in the U.K. Lucasfilm’s in-house props department is selling hand-crafted replicas as part of its “Ultimate Studio Edition” series, with prices going as high as $3500 for a limited edition burnt Vader helmet. Your bank account may not like you when it’s all said and done, but how often are you going to get a chance to own genuine Star Wars props?
4. Will Star Wars: Rebels be bringing the old Expanded Universe back into the fold?
The tweet you see above comes from Star Wars: Rebels showrunner Dave Filoni, and it’s not simply a back-handed, obtuse tease. As many fans may know, when Disney bought Lucasfilm, it de-canonized the entire Expanded Universe, rebranding the popular novels as the “Legends” series. If Filoni’s tweet is to be believed, we may be seeing hints at some of those Legends being reintroduced into his Rebels universe, pulled straight from the pages of the original Star Wars books. What exactly he’ll be bringing back is complete conjecture at this point, but it’ll still be exciting to see the incredibly rich depth of the original EU get its day in the sun soon.
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