Disney CEO Alan Horn has been hinting at bits and pieces of information about “Star Wars: Episode VII” for months, and while fans still don’t have much to cling to — including cast and plot details — Horn promises that there will be some revelations soon.
One of the few things that Horn would say about “Episode VII” is that there will be some casting announcements soon. Speaking with Bloomberg News, Horn said that casting is “almost complete,” and would be made public “very shortly.” Of course, for diehard “Wars” fans, “soon” and “shortly” have probably lost all meaning, since they’ve been waiting for news about the project since it was first announced way back in October 2012.
Horn also briefly discussed the beginning of photography on the picture, which is currently taking place at Pinewood Studios in London and in Abu Dhabi, though he cautioned that what was being filmed was not principal photography and mostly just scene-setting shots to establish what he called the film’s “‘Star Wars’-ian look.”
But the biggest bit of info that Horn dropped centered around “Star Wars” creator George Lucas, who is serving as a consultant on the series. The exact role that Lucas is playing in the creation of the new trilogy has been ambiguous since its inception — and indeed, Lucas’s son has talked about how his father has had trouble letting go of the series since selling Lucasfilm to Disney — and Horn didn’t do much to clear up the situation with his remarks to Bloomberg.
“George is a consultant,” Horn told the news outlet. “The understanding is when he sold the company — and he did sell the company to the Walt Disney Company — so he’s very aware of that. So we now are the primary drivers behind this property. But he is a very valued person. He’s the father of all this. Kathy interacts with him, back and forth I think.”
So, once again, the implication is Lucas is not too intimately involved, but involved enough to be comparing notes with producer Kathleen Kennedy. The “back and forth” that Horn describes certainly sounds like Kennedy is seeking Lucas’s approval for certain “Episode VII” plot points. But is that really the case? After all, director J.J. Abrams took on a lot of control of the project when he and consultant (and original “Wars” trilogy scribe) Lawrence Kasdan assumed screenwriting duties from Michael Arndt late last year.
It seems like we may never know the real story. But expectations are already sky-high for “Episode VII.” At this point, it’s the story that fans ultimately see on the big screen that matters the most.
“Star Wars: Episode VII” hits theaters on December 18, 2015.
[via Bloomberg News, h/t Cinema Blend]
Photo by AP Photo/Wong Maye-E