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Star Wars: The Force Awakens


Captain Kelsten

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Regarding the first six "Star Wars" films, it turns out that 20th Century Fox owns all of them. The original movie, "Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope," is the studio's forever. The next five films will be theirs until May 2020. This is why Disney will struggle to release the original, unedited trilogy box set in the near future.

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http://www.totalfilm.com/news/new-star-wars-trilogy-could-pick-up-with-luke-in-middle-age

Even though the bombshell that saw Disney purchase Star Wars has still yet to fully sink in, talk has already turned to what we can expect from the new trilogy, with George Lucas biographer Dale Pollock having his say on where the story could be leading.

According to Pollock, Lucas’ original idea for the saga spanned twelve films, treatments for which he was allowed to read when researching his biography.

““It was originally a 12-part saga,” says Pollock. “The three most exciting stories were 7, 8 and 9. They had propulsive action, really interesting new worlds, new characters. I remember thinking, ‘I want to see these three movies.’”

Pollock also mentions that the next phase could see a return to action for Luke Skywalker, with the story following him through his thirties and forties. Pollock describes it as a welcome return to form after the disappointment of the prequels.

“I think they’re horrible,” he says of the second trilogy. “When he did the three prequels, he was in a Lucas vacuum. No one saw the scripts [in advance], they were dreadful screenplays. I thought they seemed dry. They were medieval in terms of court intrigue. And it was a weird way to start out the story.”

Naturally, there’s still plenty of scope for Disney to go off-road and write their own storyline, but according to Pollock, Lucas’ treatments will form the skeleton of the new trilogy.

“Writers will absolutely take his outline,” he says. “That’s in part what Disney bought.” Welcome back, Mr Skywalker… we’ve been expecting you!

If they do use this as source material it defiantly means Mark Hamill won't be returning. Possible new Lukes? ....

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there is some dispute on that though Goose. Lucas supposedly did a deal to get it back around the time of the Special Editions.

Buying Star Wars

If there's one thing to be said about George Lucas it's that he is a very clever business man. He's so clever, in fact, that much of the business manipulation going on behind closed doors is not even reported. Such is the case with a highly important yet never completely understood case in the history of the franchise: how Lucas ended up personally owning the films in the series.

One huge repercussion of this is that the original versions of the films have so far not been released since 1995 (unless you count the Laserdisk-imported bonus feature from 2006--I don't). While films likeBlade Runner, Apocalypse Now, Close Encounters, Aliens, Brazil, Dawn of the Dead--and pretty much every film that has ever been altered since its original release--have all been restored and released in high-quality and most of them in high definition (the small size of the market is to blame for any current no-shows rather than deliberate withholding), it is a sad and frustrating reality that the most popular film of all time, Star Wars, is not available, nor are its two important sequels. Instead, there is only a twice-bastardised Special Edition that has effects updates from 1997 and 2004 shoehorned into the films, to varying degrees of success; what's even more perplexing is that this version is plagued with audio miscues, visual glitches and improper color timing to such extent that it's hard to even appreciate this as a "Special Edition" of the films (though the 2004 SE was re-color timed so as to deliberately look different, the pink lightsabers, colorless engine glows, video noise, color bleeding, crushed blacks and other such errors are assuredly due to poor workmaship--what's even more perplexing is that this was screened for Lucas, and has been several times since, such as at Celebration IV, to which he approved and gave the go-ahead). Were Fox in control of the property, the film would assuredly be meticulously restored in 8K resolution to its original release version and available on Blu Ray in an elaborate box set, perhaps with poster and lobby card reproductions and a commemorative book, much like what Warners did with Blade Runner or Universal did with Close Encounters or Fox did with its gorgeous John Ford at Fox collection.

But--Fox is not in control of the property. Lucasfilm is. What's even more interesting is that Fox still was at the time of the Special Edition in 1997--it was they who owned the copyright, and as the studio that owned the film it was their responsibility to pay for the restoration and enhancement of the film for its 1997 release. This pricetag came to the tune of roughly $20 million, almost twice what Fox payed in 1977 to make the film. But how did Lucasfilm end up with ownership by the time of the next video release? How did George Lucas and his inflated ego get to the position where he could say "the special edition, that's the only [version] I want out there"--and be able to get away with it?

When the original contract was finalised in 1976, George Lucas was able to retain ownership of any sequels, since Fox thought of them as less important negotiating items than, for example, the director's salary. But it was Lucas who had the last laugh in 1977 when Star Wars became the most successful film of all time. But owning the copyright didn't mean much if Lucas still had to go through Fox to finance and distribute--hence, basically control--the films; Lucas financed his sequels on his own, giving himself the profit percentage that would have normally gone to the studio. He also stuck it to Fox--he was not bound to have Twentieth Century Fox distribute the films, and the potentially-free-agent Star Warsfranchise was free to be shopped around to any studio that wanted it, which effectively was everyone, and they all would pay handsomely for it. Fox had right of first refusal, and Lucas was willing to let Fox distribute the next two films but only after he got his revenge for the way he felt the studio had mistreated the film before 1977. To say Fox got the short end of the stick is an understatement--Lucas got the deal of the century. With Fox paying for all distribution and advertising, and paying a $10 million upfront fee, Lucasfilm would get 77 percent of the theatrical gross, plus 90 percent of merchandising profits. (i) Though initially outraged, Fox was still happy campers, for the two sequels were nonetheless the most financially successful films the studio ever laid hands on (they bailed Empire Strikes Back out of debt in 1979 and improved their distribution deal, as well).

But while Lucas himself owned Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, Twentieth Century Fox still had the big caveat in owning the more popular original. While this probably was not a big deal in the mid and late 80's when the franchise basically disappeared and Lucas moved on to other things, in the early 1990's an unexpected rebirth occurred where the Star Wars trilogy returned to the limelight, stronger than ever, instigated by the unexpected success of Timothy Zahn's novel Heir to the Empire. Around 1992 or 1993, Lucasfilm and Fox agreed to release the original film in theaters to celebrate its twentieth anniversary in 1997. This act was not as simple as it seemed--the original negative was in such poor state that no prints could be struck from it, and so an in-depth restoration was enacted. Lucas also persuaded Fox to let him touch up a few effects that were compromised on the original release, namely in the Mos Eisley section of the film. However, as the years went by, Star Wars continued to grow in popularity--by 1995, toy manufacturer Galoob was making $120 million a year from Star Wars playsets, and the video release of the trilogy that year had moved nine million units in its first week. The Special Edition had grown to include dozens of new changes, and the two sequels were in the midst of being enhanced as well. Topping things off, Lucas also decided, finally, to make his three prequel films (using the FX of the SE as free research and development since Fox was paying the bill).

In this atmosphere, it must have become increasingly apparent that Fox still had one stick in Lucas' craw: they still owned the original film. By 1997, Twentieth Century Fox had spent around $20 million to restore and update their most prized possession--a pay-off that earned them over $120 million at the box office that year, a stunning success. The prequels began photography some months later, and by then everyone knew what was obvious: the prequels were going to be the biggest films of all time. But unlike the original trilogy, Lucas still did not have a distributor--only because he was putting off the decision, as all the studios were already lining up to offer Lucas the biggest paycheques ever written.

Of course, the most eager studio of all was the one that had been Star Wars' home for the past twenty years, Fox. Getting the prequels would be the biggest deal of the decade, and they already were in a favorable position since they had just paid to have Star Wars restored. Glenn Lovell writes in the DallasMorning News in January 1997, "Skeptics believe Fox invested in the restoration and re-release because it wants to stay away from Lucas' dark side and get first shot at distributing the prequels," a sentiment that was expressed by many that year. (ii) They may be right--Fox was on a mission to get distribution rights to the upcoming three films and it was going to do anything to see it happen. Fox vice president Tom Sherak says in January 1997 "Do we want to have the prequel? Of course we do-- everybody does," and goes on to state "When George gets here, we'll lock the door and won't let him out until he makes the deal." (iii)

In 1998, the film now shot, negotiations did begin. Of course, Fox probably got a low percentage, just as in 1977 for the first two sequels, but that didn't matter because the films stood to be the most popular ever made, and an enormous paycheque to Lucasfilm is also a given. But any studio would have gotten that deal, whether it was Warner or Universal. But there was one thing Fox had that no other studio could offer, and that Lucas was after. They had the original film. In April of 1998, it was announced that Fox would be the distributor of the new films.

It has never been reported, but I believe that Lucasfilm offered Fox distribution rights only if they would hand over the rights to the original Star Wars. Fox obviously agreed to this at some point--when the SE was released in 1997, the prints, posters and video boxes said that Empire and Jedi were copyright Lucasfilm but that Star Wars was copyright Fox. The next time the films were released was in 2000 on VHS, where Empire and Jedi were copyright Lucasfilm--but now Star Wars was copyright Lucasfilm as well. Its no coincidence that between that time a deal was hammered out between the two mega-corporations to give Fox distribution of Lucasfilm's prequels.

It was never announced anywhere. But, quietly, Lucasfilm was given the rights to the original film by Fox. To the studio, it must have looked like a good deal, even if it was a hard bargain--they lost their number one property but they gained theatrical and video distribution to three more properties that potentially were all going to all be more popular.

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who could possibly be in the frame as a new luke?

Hamill doesn't exactly look like an action hero but he would be a perfectly good mentor to a younger hero...

the perception of new film amongst general film goers is going to be so low (after the prequels) i have got a feeling this first film will surprise alot of people.

it won't have to do that much right to be seen as a massive improvement. good writer/director, a sympathic central character, memorable supporting roles, good action and light sabres. Job done.

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Hamill and Fisher knew about the new films a year ago, apparently. I knew this wasn't something starting from scratch as the deal was inked.

With Disney's announcement that they are acquiringLucasfilm from George Lucas, and with a new Star Wars movie set for 2015, "Episode 7," Luke Skywalker, Mark Hamill, now offers up some comments.

And he was just as surprised by the news as you and me.

However, Mark Hamill wasn't surprised that more Star Wars movies are being made.

Hamill told EW that he has been in contact with George Lucas who told him about Episodes 7, 8 and 9; however, he missed Lucas' phone call about the Disney acquisition.

Oh my gosh, what a shock that was! I had no idea that George was going to sell to Disney until I read it online like everybody else. He did tell us last summer about wanting to go on and do [Episodes] VII, VIII, and IX, and that [newly appointed
Lucasfilm
president] Kathleen Kennedy would be doing them.

Hamill also reveals that co-star Carrie Fisher, Princess Leia, knew about the new movies as well.

Yeah, last August, he asked Carrie and I to have lunch with him and we did. I thought he was going to talk about either his retirement or the Star Wars TV series that I’ve heard about — which I don’t think we were going to be involved in anyway, because that takes place between the
prequels
and the ones we were in and, if Luke were in them, he’d be anywhere from a toddler to a teenager so they’d get an age-appropriate actor — or the 3-D releases. So when he said, “We decided we’re going to do Episodes VII, VIII, and IX,” I was just
gobsmacked
. “What? Are you nuts?!” [Laughs] I can see both sides of it. Because in a way, there was a beginning, a middle, and an end and we all lived happily ever after and that’s the way it should be — and it’s great that people have fond memories, if they do have fond memories. But on the other hand, there’s this ravenous desire on the part of the true believers to have more and more and more material. It’s one of those things: people either just don’t care for it or are passionate about it. I guess that defines what cult movies are all about. We’ll see. I’m anxious to know what’s going on, but the main story [yesterday] was the sale to Disney.

Regarding his thoughts on Disney taking over the Star Wars franchise, Hamill said he has mixed feelings, but noted how well Disney has handled both Pixar and Marvel.

I have mixed feelings about that, but they haven’t done badly by Marvel and the
Muppets
and Pixar. It’s one of those big decisions that at first seems unusual but then the more you look at it, the more it makes sense.

And finally regarding Mark Hamill in Star Wars Episode 7? He just doesn't know.

Well, no, he was just talking about writers and the fact that he wouldn’t be directing. I guess he wanted us to know before everybody else knew. He said, “Now you can’t tell anybody!” [Laughs] Even now I’m nervous about saying anything. I just don’t know!

While we don't know yet if Hamill will have a role, it has since come out that the Luke Skywalker featured in Star Wars Episode 7 may be in his 30s and 40s and with an original story.

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Interesting read in the context of the Disney news...

The Lost Star Wars Stories: Episodes X-XII

There is an element of some mystery surrounding the fourth "trilogy" that was once attached to theStar Wars. Lucas today denies that he had any plans or story for the third trilogy (Episodes VII-IX), which isn't the case, but we can do one better: what was the story for Episodes X, XI, and XII?

Am I crazy? If you've read Secret History of Star Wars you will know what I am referring to--in early 1978, it was announced in Time that there were twelve Star Wars films in the franchise. This isn't a typo; Lucasfilm referenced them frequently in publications such as Bantha Tracks from 1978 to 1980, and Lucas himself even addresses them in the May 1980 issue, stating he had limited the series to nine films instead.

The leaves the issue dangling: what were these films? I have been over some hypotheses in Secret History of Star Wars, and these seem to remain accurate in light of discoveries I have now made. Lucas in 1977 decided that Star Wars would be a franchise, and had it set at unlimited possibilities, like the James Bond series--the films would continue indefinitely, and generally stand alone. Gary Kurtz at the time says the films aren't chronological, and would bound around in time from one film to the next--Lucas himself states that he would like to one day do a film showing the fall of Darth Vader and the murder of Anakin Skywalker.

Lucas had developed some story ideas with Leigh Brackett in November 1977, but based on The Annotated Screenplays this doesn't amount to that much--some info on the Clone Wars is developed, but the only concrete sequel story point is that Luke has a twin sister, as his father's ghost reveals to him, who is also training to be a Jedi across the other side of the galaxy. However, a few months later, in March 1978, Lucas announced to Time magazine that the series would comprise of twelve films, but doesn't offer any specifics. By 1979, in an interview for Alan Arnold's 1980 book, Lucas now has something very different in mind--nine films, comprising three trilogies, chronologically connected, with twenty years in between each set, later elaborating that the third trilogy is about "the re-building of the Republic." He says in Bantha Tracks in May 1980 that the three remainders from the 12-episode plan were "tangential" to the saga, and so axed.

There are some very practical matters here. In Secret History of Star Wars, I maintain that there was little concrete story development done when Lucas had announced the twelve film plan in the new year of 1978--one can see this from the outlook and development of the Empire Strikes Back story conferences of November 1977, where Lucas had few or only vague ideas as to where his story was going. The number twelve, attached to the films just after this, was likely put in place because twelve was the traditional number of episodes in a serial, and so The Adventures of Luke Skywalker, as the series was then called, would run for twelve episodes. I stand by this.

However, I now discover evidence of some of the types of films Lucas was interested in exploring, as he states in 1980. This shows evidence of the undeveloped Bond-like structure from 1977 and 1978. As a precursor, this is what he says in August 1977, in an interview for Rolling Stone:

"I think the sequels will be much, much better. What I want to do is direct the last sequel. I could do the first one and the last one and let everyone else do the ones in between...I would want to try and get some good directors, and see what their interpretation of the theme is. I think it will be interesting, it is like taking a theme in film school, say, okay, everybody do their interpretation of this theme. It's an interesting idea to see how people interpret the genre. Nobody has to worry about what a Wookie is and what it does and how it reacts. Wookies are there, the people are there, the environment is there, the empire is there...I've put up the concrete slab of the walls and now everybody can have fun drawing the pictures and putting on the little gargoyles and doing all the really fun stuff. And it's a competition. I'm hoping if I get friends of mine they will want to do a much better film, like, 'I'll show George that I can do a film twice that good.'...One of the sequels we are thinking of is the young days of Ben Kenobi. It would probably be all different actors."

Gary Kurtz' more recent comments on sequel and prequel ideas show that Lucas had also brainstormed ideas about doing a film about the origins of the Jedi Knights, and a whole film focusing on the Clone Wars. This indicates that Lucas probably had a lot more conceptual ideas for spin-offs than just the three he would later reveal, which is why he originally set the series at twelve films long in 1978, giving him ample room to churn out these ideas (and more importantly, support Skywalker Ranch for most of his professional lifetime). However, Lucas nixed this idea once he had finished writingEmpire Strikes Back in 1979, which unexpectedly put in motion a family soap opera revolving around Luke Skywalker's past and future, and which Lucas decided would form the basis of the series in the form of three trilogies.

Yet, even as he revealed this there was still his original public announcement of 12 films--given his 9-film story revision, he had room for three more of his original, episodic/conceptual stories if he wanted to do them still. This is why he could only frame the "missing" episodes as the three remainders--no doubt he had more, as Gary Kurtz' statements imply, but unless he wanted to admit he made it all up as he went he was prevented from speaking of them. All of these were tossed aside because, with the saga self-contained with the three trilogies he now had in place, they truely were outside of the structure--and besides, the nine films themselves would fulfill their main purpose anyways, which was to give long-term financial support for Skywalker Ranch.

In May 1980, Lucas announced in Bantha Tracks the 12-film approach had been scrapped:

"Bantha Tracks: At one point there were going to be twelve Star Wars films.

George Lucas: I cut that number down to nine because the other three were tangential to the saga."

The information below, however, has never been re-printed before. It comes from a 1980 special issue of Prevue magazine.

The first hint that new info is surfacing comes from the July-August issue, which was a 100-page special dedicated to Empire Strikes Back. In a section titled "Afterword from George Lucas", Prevuewrites, "Even [Lucas] did not know the full extent of the Star Wars epic, but estimated it to be a total of twelve stories, grouped into four collective trilogies. Since Star Wars, Lucas had refined and polished the complex narrative, finally settling on three trilogies and three additional, related tales which are separate from the primary action."

Where did they get this info from, though? Well, in a very rare special pull-out booklet (which I am not even sure which issue it came in, though it seems from around the same time), they printed an entire interview with George Lucas where he expands on this and states what some of these films would have been. Although he distorts the screenwriting process of the original film here, he does state that as he was writing the scripts (and, probably, pondering sequel ideas throughout the post-release period), he developed a number of ideas for one-off films, stating that one would be about Wookies, and another about droids (think: Wall-E), without much dialog or human characters--more in line with his more abstract early films. In fact, the Wookie idea was incorporated into the dreadful Holiday Special of 1978, which was based on a story idea from himself. These ideas also show his interest in anthropological study, devoting whole films to fleshing out the psychology and personalities of fictitious cultures. The exchange:

"Prevue: Do you plan to make any separate films about the characters? Like a film just about Han Solo or perhaps Chewbacca, the Clone Wars or the Jedis?

Lucas: I can answer that best by describing the history of the way Star Wars developed. The original screenplay, which was very involved and lengthy, like War and Peace, took me about eight months to write. Afterward, I said, 'I can't possibly shoot this movie; it's going to cost eighty million dollars, and take five years to make. I'll cut it in half and make two screenplays' So I did, and rewrote the second half. When I looked at that screenplay, it was still very long and complicated.

Prevue: How many pages, do you recall?

Lucas: A little over 200 pages. It was like a worm. I cut it in half and both halves got to be as long as the original.

Prevue: That's about twice as long as most ordinary screenplays.

Lucas: Yes it is. Most screenplays run about 100 or 110 pages. That was my second screenplay. I decided it was too long. It covered too much material, and what was in the script wasn't really filled out enough. It was too episodic and too fragmented. So I took the screenplay and divided it into three stories, and rewrote the first one. As I was writing, I came up with some ideas for a film about robots, with no humans in it. When I got to working on the Wookiee, I thought of a film just about Wookiees, nothing else. So, for a time, I had a couple of odd movies with just those characters. Then, I had the other films, which were essentially split into three parts each, two trilogies. When the smoke cleared, I said, 'This is really great. I'll do another trilogy that takes place after this.' I had three trilogies of nine films, and then another couple of odd films. Essentially, there were twelve films.

Prevue: Do you still plan on producing all twelve?

Lucas: No, I've eliminated the odd movies, because they really don't have anything to do with the Star Wars saga. It gets confusing trying to explain the whole thing, but if I ever do the odd movies about the robots or the Wookiees, it'll be just about them, not necessarily about Chewbacca or Threepio--just about Wookiees and robots. It's the genre that I'm intrigued with, not necessarily the characters. I'm just going to keep it pure. It's a nine-part saga that has a beginning, a middle, and an end. It progresses over a period of about fifty or sixty years with about twenty years between trilogies, each trilogy taking about six or seven years."

In a few months,

The Making of Empire Strikes Back

will be released--I wonder if any of this information will be contained within it, or if this is to be the exclusive reference to entirely undiscovered Star Wars ideas.

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EPISODE VII

RETURN OF THE EMPIRE

THIRTY YEARS HAVE PASSED SINCE THE DEFEAT OF THE EVIL GALACTIC EMPIRE, ABOVE THE FOREST MOON OF ENDOR AND A NEW REPUBLIC FORMED FROM THE VICTORIOUS REBEL ALLIANCE AND USHERED IN AN ERA OF PEACE AND PROSPERITY FOR THE ENTIRE GALAXY.

HOWEVER, NOW THAT THE COMMON ENEMY OF THE EMPIRE HAS BEEN DEFEATED, LONG FORGOTTEN FEUDS HAVE RE-ARISEN AND ONCE AGAIN THE GALAXY'S WORLDS SLIDE TOWARDS WAR.

JEDI MASTER LUKE SKYWALKER, HEAD OF THE RE-ESTABLISHED JEDI ORDER HAS BEEN TASKED WITH A PEACE-KEEPING MISSION TO NAR-SHADDA, TO NEGIOTIATE PEACE BETWEEN WARRING HUTT CLANS. ACCOMPANIED BY HIS NEPHEW AND PADAWAN, ANAKIN SOLO, MASTER SKYWALKER IS UNAWARE THAT THE MISSION IS A TRAP...A TRAP LAID BY AN OLD ENEMY, LONG THOUGHT DEAD...

Disney Pictures and Lucasfilm present STAR WARS Episode VII

Starring Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker, Ryan Gosling as Anakin Solo, Carrie Fisher as Leia Organa Solo, Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca, Kenny Baker as R2-D2, Anthony Daniels as C3-PO, Academy Award Winner Anthony Hopkins as Rego The Hutt, Sam Neil as M'thrawn'urdo. Also starring Academy Award Winner Phillip Seymour Hoffman as Captain Palleon.

Featuring Harrison Ford.

And James Earl Jones.

With Hayden Christensen.

Also Ewan McGregor.

STAR WARS VII : RETURN OF THE EMPIRE MAY 2015

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sorry filling this thread up with info:

Read this a minute ago on aicn. Really hope there isn't a grain of truth to any of it...:

LV_426 here.

In case you haven’t seen it yet, I figured I’d forward my silly little theory from the talkbacks that Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird might be the writer/director team for Star Wars Episode 7.

My theory...

Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird are already set-up as the writer/director team for Star Wars Episode 7.

The reason for this speculation is that there was a spec script project called 1952 that Damon Lindelof sold to Disney recently (see link below).

http://www.firstshow...906-for-disney/

Some specifics from the First Showing article that might point to my theory:

"Brad Bird and fan-favorite film writer Damon Lindelof are teaming up for a new project at Disney. Bird, coming off of his first live-action with Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol, is set to direct the mysterious large scale sci-fi project 1952. Whether that's just a codename or an actual year related to the story, we're not yet sure, but the project "has multi-platform aspirations" meaning Disney wants it for theme parks, retail stores and theaters. It'll no doubt be a "big tentpole" movie, and with these two storytellers leading the way, it is definitely something to watch for."

So in addition to the new Star Wars films, we have theme park and retail store aspirations? I don't know about you, but this sounds like it could be the next phase of Star Wars via the Disney model.

Again from First Showing:

"Now we know that Brad Bird is definitely on-board to direct, but other than that, still no plot details. Anyone? It sounds like Disney has something on their hands that could be huge, and they're making sure to build it from the ground up properly, with the right talent top to bottom. I just wish we knew any extra details about what it was actually about."

My theory is that 1952 is a codename for Star Wars episode 7, 8, and 9. Just as Blue Harvest was used as a working title to throw the media off when Return of the Jedi was in production.

So why this mysterious project known as 1952 though? Because the title alone seems to refer to the year 1952, just as titles like Kubrick's landmark of science fiction 2001: A Space Odyssey or Wong-kar Wai's romantic sci-fi piece 2046 refer to specific years in which the films take place. What happened in 1952 then that makes this seem logical? What I think is the obvious event is an incident where supposedly some UFOs “buzzed the tower” Maverick and Goose style if you will, over Washington D.C between the days of July 19–20 and July 26–27. This incident, known as the Washington flap, is precisedly the type of project that a writer like Damon Lindelof would seem to be interested in (retro, sci-fi, conspiracy theory-laden, and infused with the American mythology of the UFO phenomenon). Disney’s 1952, if it is actually about this supposed UFO fly-over of Washington DC, sounds interesting. Personally I wouldn’t mind seeing this type of 1950’s UFO paranoia done up in big budget Hollywood style via Brad Bird. The thing is, could it be that Disney, Lucas, Lindelof, and Bird needed a really good cover story to mask their involvement with brand spanking new Star Wars? I think this could very well be a ruse not unlike the Blue Harvest concept, which was very thorough in covering up the production of Return of the Jedi.

Another factor is that Mark Hamill was born on September 25th of 1951. I'm guessing that since this story will probably have Luke as the Obi-Wan type of mentor as many around the world are suggesting, that it was a cute little Lindelofian trick to throw people by having the fake title be of a year so close to both Luke Skywalker's birthday and the implication of a possible movie connection to the Washington D.C. UFO fly-over. Lindelof and Disney figured it would be a better ruse to switch the year of this fictitious film from 1951 to 1952, so as to steer speculation towards the UFO fly-by concept.

Oh, and we can’t forget that Qui-Gon, I mean Liam Neeson, was born in 1952. Perhaps a connection, or maybe I’ve watched Aliens too many times and the ping ping ping of the motion tracker has driven me insane?

Again, they're already setting up a whole trilogy that kicks off in 2015, which unless Star Wars Episode 7 is a holiday theatrical release ala Bond or The Hobbit, that leaves only about two-and-a-half years for Disney and the new Kathleen Kennedy captained Lucasfilm to get a script finished to a polished state, put into production, posted (in 3D), and released. For all we know, it is likely that the script has been written and polished and Brad Bird is directing while Lindelof is involved in some capacity as a producer at this point. Pre-production could very well be underway if we look at this current time table of about two years from now as a release date. We're at the end of October 2012. Let's say Star Wars episode 7 is going to be released in the middle of summer, say mid-July. That leaves only two more months for 2012 (minus a couple weeks for all the holiday loss of productivity). Then another 28-30 months if they were to release in mid-July 2015. After all, you’ve got to leave time for prints and marketing and director and writer/producer hyping and interviews). Even if Disney throws money at this, it is not something they will take lightly, as getting Episode 7 drastically wrong will be a huge problem for them and future plans to grow Star Wars into an even bigger cash-eating wormhole, er, I mean fiscally sound investment in intellectual property.

So I'd say this also could explain how Disney already has the basics worked out in terms of being able to announce Episodes 7-9 and more Star Wars films after those every two to three years apart. I wager that Lindelof sat down with George Lucas months ago after his Prometheus work ended, and hashed out the basic story structure for this new trilogy, and perhaps even some of the ideas for stuff that comes after. Just like he sat alongside Ridley Scott and rewrote John Spaihts' Alien Engineers* script, which became a film many of us talkbackers love to bitch and moan about, Prometheus.

-- Call me LV_426 and Nuke ‘em from orbit, cause it’s the only way to be sure.

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Heh, I've no idea where that's from, but I was thinking a few days before this news broke that I'd love to have seen Nar Shaddaa in one of the films. I think it appears in the CGI cutscenes for Jedi Knight and looks like a great location. I got the impression it was like a floating city in space, but it seems that it's a grubby city moon. Which is more boring.

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who could possibly be in the frame as a new luke?

Hamill doesn't exactly look like an action hero but he would be a perfectly good mentor to a younger hero...

the perception of new film amongst general film goers is going to be so low (after the prequels) i have got a feeling this first film will surprise alot of people.

it won't have to do that much right to be seen as a massive improvement. good writer/director, a sympathic central character, memorable supporting roles, good action and light sabres. Job done.

I don't think a new Luke/setting it a few years after ROTJ is a great idea.

It effectively becomes a reboot of sorts (in that you have new actors playing the cast) - and if you have a new Luke then there is no reason not to have Han and Leia in it (why wouldnt you?) and the droids and Chewy don't have to be the original cast (although I assume they could still do it).

The new Luke/Han/Leia would need to be expertly cast and superb in their roles or the new films' are already on the back foot and a total change in cast in such a small time frame (10 years between ROTJ and the new one if Luke is in his thirties?) will be pretty jarring.

Better to go 30/40 years forward - get the original cast back if possible for cameos/mentor roles/kill them off for dramatic effect, etc and have a next generation cast of characters (and the droids/chewy)

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All the buzz got me wanting to watch the films so I've just got my tea and stuck A New Hope on.

:Edit:

First time I've seen te BR edits. What's with all the shit CGI'd robots and giraffe looking aliens at Mos Eisley? The worst is the one that walks across the screen just before Obi Wan uses the force on the Storm Trooper :facepalm:

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