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Around the Galaxy: Star Wars News – 9.22.17

Rumors Live, Rumors Die–Another Season in the Star Wars Universe Begins…

The fist day of fall (the autumnal equinox occurs at 4:02 PM here on the East Coast) brings us ever closer to December.

And, even as the release of Star Wars: The Last Jedi inches nearer to release, stories about Episode VIII and Episode IX and #untitledhansolomovie are biggining to pile up like so many leaves.

So, think of MSW as your rake, as we bag the most important stories. See what I did there? But I digress…

Except for Paramount

This illustration by Laemeur almost says it all. (THR.com)

With so many folks awaiting the next installment of the saga, it can be easy to forget that there are folks in the entertainment world for whom Star Wars news might be akin to Anakin’s sand: i.e. you may pardon Paramount CEO Jim Gianopulos for thinking that Star Wars is “coarse and rough and irritating.”

That’s particularly so, because The Hollywood Reporter posts that—for the second time—J.J. Abrams jumped to Star Wars; this time to Episode IX “despite a $10 million obligation to his ‘home’ studio.”

In the piece “Star Wars Director Drama: How J.J. Abrams Jilted Paramount for Episode IX,” THR’s Kim Masters writes:

As for Gianopulos, the exec accommodated the move even if he was not happy, say sources. Paramount declined comment, but the studio chief is said to be irked to see Abrams get poached again — this time despite a specifically negotiated obligation. But fighting Abrams would have meant alienating the filmmaker and taking on major adversaries: Lucasfilm, Disney and possibly even Steven Spielberg, who isn’t involved with Star Wars but has a long-term association with Lucasfilm chief Kathleen Kennedy and has taken credit for luring Abrams to helm The Force Awakens in the first place. And then there are Abrams’ reps at CAA. With Paramount in need of all the support it can get, Gianopulos had to be realistic.

And, for Paramount, being realistic is grinning and bearing it–perhaps while seeking some make-good money–in the hopes that Abrams returns to the Paramount fold, post-Star Wars.

12 (or 14) Parsecs to Go?

Given Mr. Howard’s proclivity for political banter on his Twitter feed, fans can be excused for thinking his most recent #untitledhansolomovie missive was actually a post about Sean Spicer’s return to headlines.

But no! Lo an behold our fist look at Kessel… Maybe?

This time it’s THR’s Ryan Parker who writes, “Howard told Heat Vision in early August that the movie was coming along great and he was having a ball. He also said the social media teases are not random; he takes great care to show just enough to whet appetites.”

To which Parker adds:

It seems Howard is once more giving fans a slight taste of what is to come without really giving away much at all. Ever since the Oscar-winning helmer took over the picture this summer, he has been dropping breadcrumbs for fans via Twitter and Instagram. It has been the ultimate tease and a unique method of promotion for an installment in the space adventure film series.

Check out Parker’s piece, “Star Wars: Ron Howard Teases Millennium Falcon’s Famous Kessel Run in Han Solo Film,” and then check out MSW’s own “Twitter Moment” and story on Mr. Howard’s social media work.

Incredible Carrie never met Serkis’ Snoke?

The List nabbed a scoop as BANG Showbiz (?) spoke to Andy Serkis at the world premiere of Goodbye Christopher Robin.

They quote the actor saying:

I had no scenes with Carrie but I did get to know her a little bit. She was an incredible human being with a wonderful personality and she’s sadly, sadly missed and everyone who came into contact with her was really touched by her great energy and great sense of humour. She is a wonderful person and I did have a great time working with the cast and Adam Driver and Domhnall Gleeson, we’ve had some really great times on it.

The Internet ran with this and negated any thought of a Snoke vs. Leia confrontation. However, I think the Internet may have forgotten that Serkis’ Snoke is a motion-capture character, and that while he never had any “scenes with Carrie,” one wonders if Snoke might have scenes involving Fisher’s character.

We shall see. We shall see…

No Palpatine Scene, Either?

Meanwhile, over at slashfilm.com, Chris Evangelista writes that a LEGO-fed theory might also be on the outs.

In the piece, “This Mysterious ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Hologram is Not Who You Think It is,” Evangelista writes, “Rumors are stubborn things. The internet has made rumor a type of religion; something spread far and wide with staunch believers who refuse to accept anything but their own patented version of the truth.”

The rumor he’s speaking to regards a tiny plastic hologram included with a new LEGO: Star Wars set. The writer adds:

The lack of a name for whomever that hologram may be might raise an eye-brow or two – why keep it a secret, unless it’s a spoiler? But there’s nothing here to indicate that the robed hologram figure is Palpatine. Hell, it could be literally anyone in the Star Wars universe – robes aren’t exactly hard to come by in the Star Wars universe. The answer could be incredibly simple.

Evangelista also adds a Twitter thread as evidence to the simple answer:


And—if Pablo Hidalgo’s note wasn’t enough—Evangelista grinds this rumor into the dirt with his own fact-finding.

“Here’s the thing: it’s not true,” he writes. “A source close to the production confirmed to us that while there are holograms in The Last Jedi, there is not a scene where Snoke talks to a Palpatine hologram. Palpatine is not in the current cut of the film.”

Alrighty then…

A Skywalker Goes Solo?

Finally, in a bit of news that seems to confirm a rumor, ThatHashtagShow.com reports that Darth Vader will make an appearance in the #untitledhansolomovie.

Sean Novicki writes:

A source close to the production has revealed to us that someone—presumably not Wilding, given his pretty definitive statement that he isn’t involved—was on the set of Howard’s Han Solo reshoots in Darth Vader’s armor as recently as two weeks ago. Unfortunately, that’s pretty much all we can confirm. We don’t know how big of a role Vader will play in Han Solo; it could be nothing more than a brief cameo in a single shot; it could be a full scene with dialogue; it could be multiple scenes. We don’t know. The only thing we can say with confidence is that Darth Vader is making some kind of appearance in the film.

Of course, everyone has an opinion as to whether this above a good or bad thing (or whether it’s actually true).

Me, I have no problem with the Big Baddie stepping out of the shadows to scare the poodoo out of young Han, perhaps underlining his reluctance to join Princess Leia’s revolution unless he is well compensated.

However, for that reveal we’ll have to wait for 2018.


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John Bishop

A graduate of Boston and Northeastern universities, John Bishop became the beat reporter for BostonBruins.com prior to the B’s 2006-07 hockey season. While with the Bruins, “Bish” traveled North America and Europe to cover the Black & Gold’s every move via laptop, blog, and smart phone. The co-author of two books, Bygone Boston and Full 60 to History: The Inside Story of the 2011 Stanley Cup Champion Boston Bruins, John covered the XXI Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver in 2010 and the B’s 2011 championship run and banner raising before taking a faculty/communications position at a prep school outside Boston in 2013. He lives with his wife Andrea and sons Jack, Scott, and Luke in central Massachusetts.
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