Ladies, gentlemen and Darryn, it’s finally happened! After nearly a year of nothing but wild conjecture, backroom gossip and just plain bovine manure, we finally have something concrete to report about Star Wars: Episode VII. Phew. I was starting to think this movie doesn’t actually exist. But not only does it indeed exist, but it we now even know when it exists!
Disney CEO Bob Iger held a conference call with investors yesterday to provide them an update on how the House of Mouse is doing. This includes Lucasfilm – which investors are obviously interested in – and their current biggest project, the heavily anticipated Episode VII, which thus far has been very close to vaporware. But according to Iger, not only is development on the first installment of the new trilogy proceeding well, but Lucasfilm actually plan to start shooting in May.
Iger also spilled on the film’s story, revealing that Episode VII will take place 30 years after the events of Return of the Jedi and will see “a trio of new young leads alongside some very familiar faces”. We know that the “familiar faces” are probably Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher as Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia and Han Solo respectively. The “trio of new young leads” is one more than most people expected, as the last few rumours had it pegged for just two leads. As for who those leads are? Well, they could be just about anybody, as director JJ Abrams has seemingly met with everybody who fits these two categories: is alive, is an actor/actress.
The most interesting aspect is the “30 years later” angle. In the Expanded Universe, this is right at the tail end of the New Jedi Order era and the beginning of the Legacy era, during which the Skywalker and Solo offspring took the centre stage in all the action. This unfortunately all but confirms the hints and rumours that Lucasfilm will indeed be tossing out the Expanded Universe as canon, as that era has just been too thoroughly mined by other books already to allow the movies enough wiggle room to tell their own stories, while still not contradicting any other existing tales. Like I said before, chopping the EU makes the most logical sense, as it allows the new movies to truly surprise audiences, but there are so many amazing tales in the EU whose impact may be lessened now that they are nothing more than glorified fan fiction.
As disheartening as that may be to an EU fan such as myself, I’m just bloody happy that I finally don’t have to type the words “Star Wars” and “rumour” next to each other again.
Last Updated: March 19, 2014