Oct. 03, 2014 | 12:15 p.m.
The sun was shining brightly on one recent afternoon at Skywalker Ranch, George Lucas’ lush yet cozy retreat in Marin County. But Kilian Plunkett, art director for the new animated series “Star Wars Rebels,” was not outside enjoying a stroll through Lucas’ vineyard or taking a dip in the waters of Lake Ewok. He was inside, in the dim light of the Lucasfilm archive, holding a bit of cinematic history in his hands. At just 18×41 centimeters, artist Ralph McQuarrie’s gouache concept paintings for the original “Star Wars” trilogy are smaller than expected, but then again, so is the Mona Lisa. Physical size bears no relation to the impact these paintings have on pop culture. “I always assumed these things were giant movie poster size,” Plunkett said as he pointed out the finer details of McQuarrie’s style. For “Star Wars” […]
Oct. 02, 2014 | 1:25 p.m.
“Star Wars Rebels” is getting a second season, Disney announced Thursday, the day before the cartoon’s first season premiere. Disney XD has ordered a second season of the new animated series, which has been praised by critics as well as fans who saw a debut screening at San Diego’s Comic-Con International in July or who caught early screenings on digital platforms. “The fan response to the show has been amazing, humbling and inspiring,” Lucasfilm’s vice president of creative development, Kiri Hart, said in a news release. “We’re looking forward to the adventure ahead.” “Star Wars Rebels” is meant to be the origin story of the Rebel Alliance — the group that Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia and Han Solo would eventually lead to defeat the evil Empire. Set about five years before the beginning of “Star Wars Episode IV: A New […]
Aug. 04, 2014 | 6:05 p.m.
Excited to see “Star Wars Rebels”? Tonight, you can watch the first seven minutes of the first episode online. Set about five years before the beginning of “Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope,” the new animated series follows the adventures of a group of heroes desperately trying to combat the all-consuming might of the Empire, the fascistic government arisen from the ashes of the Old Republic in “Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.” Although the story will recount the formation of the Rebel Alliance, the group that Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia and Han Solo would eventually lead to defeat the evil Empire, at the outset of the show the organization is little more than a ragtag band of aliens and a Jedi Knight in hiding, Kanan (voiced by Freddie Prinze Jr.), who engage in minor skirmishes with Imperial […]
July 24, 2014 | 11:32 p.m.
“Star Wars” fans got their first look at the new “Star Wars Rebels” series on Thursday at Comic-Con with a screening of the first episode, which isn’t due to premiere on the Disney Channel until October. While the animation wasn’t quite finished, and therefore not quite ready for review, it did evoke the look and feel of “Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope.” The exclusive clip above was screened at the panel and gave fans a feel for the lighthearted, more adventurous feel of the new series. At the show’s panel discussion beforehand, executive producers Dave Filoni and Simon Kinberg appeared before fans for the first time with the show’s cast, which includes Freddie Prinze Jr., Steve Blum, Vanessa Marshall, Taylor Gray and Tiya Sircar. The new series takes place in the “Star Wars” timeline between “Revenge of the […]
July 10, 2014 | 7:00 a.m.
As the fall premiere of “Star Wars Rebels” grows ever closer, we’re getting more familiar with the characters created to bring us into this new era of the space saga. On the bad guy side, images of the Inquisitor has been available for a long time, but now we’re getting our first look at his right-hand man, Agent Kallus, the so-called “Rebel hunter.” And the actor selected to voice him, David Oyelowo. Oyelowo’s acting career is red-hot right now. In the last couple of years, he’s appeared in “Rise of the Planet of the Apes,” “Lincoln,” “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” and has upcoming roles in Christopher Nolan’s “Interstellar” and will play Martin Luther King Jr. in “Selma.” Now he’s voicing the evil agent of the Empire, working for the Imperial Security Bureau. The way “Rebels” executive producer Dave Filoni describes […]
June 20, 2014 | 12:47 p.m.
Rian Johnson is set to take the reins of the “Star Wars” franchise. The “Looper” filmmaker will write and direct “Star Wars: Episode VIII” and pen a treatment for “Episode IX,” a representative for Johnson confirmed to Hero Complex. Johnson takes over for J.J. Abrams, who is currently helming “Episode VII” from a script he wrote with Lawrence Kasdan. A representative for Disney, which owns Lucasfilm, declined to comment on the news of Johnson’s hiring. Johnson’s previous films include the high-school noir “Brick” and the caper comedy “The Brothers Bloom,” and he’s best known for the mind-bending time-travel thriller “Looper,” starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis. The 2012 movie grossed $176 million at the worldwide box office. Johnson, 40, is the latest genre-savvy young filmmaker to join the “Star Wars” universe: “Godzilla” director Gareth Edwards and “Chronicle” director Josh Trank have also been enlisted to direct two “Star Wars” standalone movies. Abrams’ […]
May 14, 2014 | 4:46 p.m.
Tony DiTerlizzi is no stranger to stumbling into fantastical worlds — as a writer and artist he co-created “The Spiderwick Chronicles” and created the “WondLa” trilogy of children’s books (the final book, “The Battle for WondLa” was released earlier this month). But when he got the call to write a children’s book retelling the original “Star Wars” trilogy, to be illustrated with Ralph McQuarrie’s original concept drawings, he found himself entering a real-life magical realm: Lucasfilm. “I visited the Lucasfilm archive at the Skywalker Ranch,” DiTerlizzi said during a recent event at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles benefiting his favorite charity, Starlight Children’s Foundation. “I thought it would be a room with a bunch of flat files of art. No, the Death Star was there. R2-D2 was there. There was the lost Ark of the Covenant. Indy’s hat. Willow. Ten-year-old Tony’s […]
April 29, 2014 | 10:50 a.m.
The speculation is finally at an end — John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson and Max von Sydow will star in “Star Wars: Episode VII.” The actors join the stars of George Lucas’ original saga, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew and Kenny Baker, in director J.J. Abrams’ new film, due in theaters Dec. 18, 2015. In a statement released on StarWars.com, Abrams said, “It is both thrilling and surreal to watch the beloved original cast and these brilliant new performers come together to bring this world to life, once again. We start shooting in a couple of weeks, and everyone is doing their best to make the fans proud.” Abrams wrote the screenplay for the film with Lawrence Kasdan, and he will produce with Lucasfilm chief Kathleen Kennedy and […]
April 25, 2014 | 1:57 p.m.
“Star Wars” obsessives got some good news and bad news Friday when Lucasfilm officially announced the fate of the “Star Wars” Expanded Universe, the loosely interlocked series of books, comics, video games and other ancillary products that have served to fill out the imaginary universe George Lucas established in his six original films. First, the bad news: Fans can forget trying to decipher the future of “Star Wars” from the hints of the past. Lucasfilm is officially writing off all Expanded Universe properties that have been produced to date. While many of the books and stories will remain available, they now will be labeled with a “Legends” banner. Despite the popularity of the Timothy Zahn-authored novels set in the years after “Return of the Jedi” or the “Dark Empire” comic books, those stories will have no bearing on what happens […]
Feb. 13, 2014 | 6:04 a.m.
The sixth and final season of the “Star Wars” animated series “The Clone Wars” is coming to Netflix. Subscribers in the U.S. and Canada will be able to watch the final 13 episodes of the popular show, dubbed “The Lost Season,” beginning March 7. “The Clone Wars” aired on Cartoon Network but was canceled last year to make way for a new series, “Star Wars Rebels,” which will premiere on the Disney Channel in the fall before airing regularly on Disney XD. In addition to “The Lost Season,” Netflix also will make available the entirety of “The Clone Wars'” first five seasons, including several director’s-cut episodes not previously seen on television, in addition to the “Clone Wars” feature film. PHOTOS: ‘Star Wars’ at the box office “’Star Wars’ is one of the most iconic franchises of all time and this […]