Star Wars Celebration is underway and, naturally, there’s some news coming out about the upcoming Episode VII. Famous faces have been gathering and taking the stage and now we have for you a batch of things those famous people have been saying and showing to the Celebration audiences. The top three stories of the minute? John Williams is definitely back, Kathleen Kennedy wants more models and less CGI for the new trilogy and Dave Filoni is showing off some Star Wars Rebels concept art. Check it all out after the jump.
Regardless of who ends up directing the next three movies of the Star Wars universe, there’s one thing that the franchise has always taken pride in and that’s composer John Williams crafting the epic movie scores. I mean, who else could do it but Williams? Though it’s already pretty much been set in stone that Williams would be back, now Kennedy has made the official confirmation. And as it turns out, he’s not only onboard for Episode VII, but for Episodes VIII and IX as well. You can check out what Williams had to say about it in the following video:
Of course, Williams is in his 80s and there’s six years to go. So you better make sure to eat right and get regular check-ups, Mister Williams, or people are going to be very, very sad.
Next up, some more announcements from Kennedy, this time concerning the way they plan on putting together the next three Star Wars flicks. We all know that the prequel trilogy was a veritable nightmare of CGI, so much to the point that everything looked artificial and… well, just plain blah. The force must be with us, for Kennedy has seen the error of Lucas’s ways and is now pledging a more prominent role for models and real locations in the production of the next movies. Check out excerpts from her statement below:
“There’s nothing more exciting than to be involved in that kind of technological innovation. When the story ideas you’re working on contribute to pushing the technology, I really think that’s what’s so exciting about our business. It’s when the imagination drives innovation and new design.”
“It’s a conversation we’re having all the time in the development of Episode VII. Looking at all the Star Wars movies and getting a feel for what even some of the early films did, combining real locations and special effects – that’s something we’re looking very seriously at.”
“So we’re going to find some very cool locations that we’re going to use in support of Episode VII. And I think we’re probably going to end up using every single tool in the toolbox to create the look of these movies.”
“It’s using model makers; it’s using real droids; it’s taking advantage of artwork that you actually can touch and feel. And we want to do that in combination with CG effects. We figure that’s what will make it real.”
And last up on the agenda, some concept art and a new logo for the upcoming Star Wars Rebels animated series. Animator Dave Filoni took the stage and showed off some of what we can expect. Such as…
The show’s logo:
A picture of the main character’s ship, “Ghost”:
And some landscape concept art:
He also made a point to mention that the development team is making sure to stick as close to original Star Wars design guru Ralph McQuarrie’s vision as possible while changing it up just enough to reflect the slightly earlier time frame of Rebels.
It looks like there’s some all-around dedication to the aesthetics of the first trilogy running deep through Disney and Kennedy’s vision of the future of Star Wars. A fact that I am very, very pleased with.
Look for Star Wars Rebels to arrive sometime in the fall of 2014 and, of course, Star Wars: Episode VII will be showing up in 2015.
Hugs and kisses to /film for helping us spread the good news.