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Star Wars Unveils Its Plans For Comic-Con, For Better Or Worse

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star-wars-rebels-trailerSan Diego Comic-Con 2014 is arguably the year’s most geektastic event, and J.J. Abrams’ upcoming Star Wars: Episode VII is arguably the most geektastic movie currently in production. (Sorry, Batman v. Superman: Justice is Dawning, or whatever, you know it’s true.) But in the same way that like poles of a magnet push each other away, Comic-Con and Episode VII will sadly be completely exclusive sectors of the entertainment realm, as Disney is keeping their future blockbuster out of San Diego entirely, disappointing many thousands of hopeful fans in the process. They will, however, be Force-choking their way into the Disney XD panel with the highly anticipated animated series Star Wars Rebels. Silver lining or olive branch?

Currently in production in London’s Pinewood Studios, and a year-and-a-half away from theaters, Episode VII likely wouldn’t have all that much to debut at Comic-Con anyway, beyond a simple teaser that probably isn’t worth making a big fuss over. And are we really all that surprised anyway? Abrams is not one to debut pre-release “footage” so much as cryptic hints and random behind-the-scenes images. So we move on from CGI-filled live-action to CGI-filled animation.

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Doctor Who Showrunner Steven Moffat Rumored For A Star Wars Movie

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Steven Moffat

UPDATE: Easy come, easy go. Moffat’s wife has popped on Twitter to shoot down the Star Wars rumors. Original story below.

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Well, this ought to get people riled up. Doctor Who is set to return next month for another season and with a new Doctor (Peter Capaldi), and showrunner Steven Moffat has hinted that he plans to stick with the show for a while yet. But if a new rumor is to be believed, he just might make a voyage into an entirely different iconic science fiction universe: that of George Lucas’ Star Wars franchise.

The rumor — and we do stress that word — comes via Jedi News, who claim that they’re “hearing rumblings in the Force that Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat has been linked to a future Star Wars movie.” Now, even assuming this is true, “linked to” could mean a lot of things. If Lucasfilm/Disney is courting him to write or direct a future Star Wars film, there are several possible contenders. We know Looper’s Rian Johnson is writing and directing Episode VIII. Reports are conflicting, with some suggesting Johnson would finish out the new trilogy by also writing and directing Episode IX, whereas others claim he’ll only be writing a story treatment for IX. If that latter possibility is the case, then perhaps Moffat could be in line to direct Episode IX, and/or write the full screenplay from Johnson’s treatment.

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Star Wars Rebels Introduces Imperial Enforcer Agent Kallus

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In regards to Star Wars, most of our attention is focused on J.J. Abrams upcoming Episode VII and the other film additions to the canon. Movies like that one, and Rian Johnson’s Episode VIII, and Gareth Edwards and Josh Trank’s impending standalone films, are obviously the biggest deal, but it often feels like we forgot that the first post-Disney-buyout addition to the family that we’ll actually see will be the animated Star Wars Rebels. They’re quietly putting together what looks like a cool addition to the franchise, one that will have wide reaching implications. Now Lucasfilm has released this video introducing us to one of the villains the heroes will have to face off against, Agent Kallus, Imperial Enforcer.

While The Inquisitor obviously represents the evil, nasty side of things, the Dark Side of the Force, Kallus is a different style of enemy. Definitely a bad guy, he’s not straight up wicked and malevolent. A member of the Imperial Security Bureau, described here as a mixture of the FBI and the military police, he represents the more rank and file of the Empire. While he is passionate about his work, and definitely believes in the Empire, he is just doing his job.

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Kevin Smith Explains What Brought Him To Tears On The Star Wars: Episode VII Set

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Last week filmmaker and lifelong Star Wars fanboy Kevin Smith got to visit the set of Episode VII in London and came away literally moved to the point of tears, which he shared with the world courtesy of a weepy Instagram photo and a thumbs up. Naturally, director J.J. Abrams’ invitation came packaged with a non-disclosure agreement, so Smith won’t be tossing any Episode VII spoilers out there. But he has clarified just what he saw on set that impacted him so powerfully, and his experience is something that should resonate with anyone who grew up dreaming of George Lucas’ galaxy far, far away.

The folks over at /Film tracked down the above video, which features Smith doing one of his frequent and often wildly entertaining Q&As, this one at the Neuchatel International Film Festival in Switzerland. Among other things, he addresses his Episode VII set visit, including its emotional centerpiece: getting to see the Millennium Falcon set inside Pinewood Studios’ Stage M. (The Episode VII talk starts around the 35-minute mark.)

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Star Wars: Episode VII “Leaked Footage” Isn’t Real, Is Still Cool

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With Star Wars: Episode VII currently filming at Pinewood Studios in England, all the sneaky little Internet spies are working their hardest to squirrel out new information, footage, and pictures. And they’ve even succeeded a few times. In addition to the steady stream of plot rumors, shots of the Millennium Falcon set under construction leaked last month, as well as photos of creatures and cast from the Abu Dhabi. Well, this latest “leaked footage” at least does you the courtesy of winking at the fact that it’s totally not real…but it’s still pretty fun.

A dude named Frank Wunderlich created the video and then uploaded it to YouTube with the troll-happy title of “Leaked Star Wars Episode VII Filmset Footage!” Thankfully you’d have to be spectacularly gullible not to see through that ruse almost immediately, as the first footage in the video is of German traffic signs, one of which directs motorists to the “Imperial Starport Frankfurt.” In his YouTube post, Frank says:

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Star Wars: Episode VII Adds Two Unknown Newcomers To The Cast

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star warsStar Wars has always had a thing for casting relatively unknown actors in key roles. Of the three biggest stars of the franchise—Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford—none of them were big stars at the time George Lucas cast them. Ford was by far the best known, but he was far from a household name before he played Han Solo. The prequels followed this pattern, with mixed results, and even though Disney now owns Lucasfilm, director J.J. Abrams and company are sticking to this trend for Episode VII, adding two new unknown faces to the cast.

StarWars.com reports that the production has signed newcomers Crystal Clarke and Pip Andersen, both of whom were found during an open casting call that went down late last year. This sounds like it was one hell of an undertaking to settle on these two. More than 37,000 people showed up in 11 cities across the US and UK, while another 30,000 submitted their applications through online channels.