Star Wars cinematographer Gilbert Taylor passed away on Friday at his home in the Isle of Wight. He was 99. From the iconic opening shot of a massive Imperial Star Destroyer chasing the Rebels' Tantive IV to the setting of twin suns on Tatooine, Taylor played a large role in establishing the visual identity of the entire series.
Here’s some news worthy of fanfare: John Williams will return to compose the music for J.J. Abrams’ upcoming Star Wars: Episode VII, Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy announced today. The news came out of Star Wars Celebration Europe II, a fan gathering in Messe Essen, Germany. The video above played for the crowd immediately after she revealed his participation in the intensely anticipated followup to Return of the Jedi. Williams says he hasn’t learned any story details for the film, which is the way he prefers to work. “I’m waiting anxiously like the audience around the world to find out what the surprises are, and discover what my continued role is going to be,” Williams says.
The adventuring stars of Disney's hit animated series Phineas and Ferb are heading to a galaxy far, far away: A special Star Wars-themed episode of the musical-comedy series is currently in production, announced today by show creators and executive producers Dan Povenmire and Jeff "Swampy" Marsh at Comic-Con International in San Diego. The one hour event episode will premiere next year on Disney Channel and Disney XD, placing the characters of Phineas and Ferb in the same space and time as the world of Star Wars.
There are 23 cultural figures receiving this year's National Medals of Arts and Humanities in Washington D.C. on July 10. The Hollywood Reporter The White House announced Wednesday that President Barack Obama will present this year’s National Medals of Arts and Humanities to a glittering constellation of cultural and entertainment industry figures, including Joan Didion, George Lucas, Elaine May and Herb Alpert.
From Star Wars to starrey-eyed lovers: George Lucas has married long-term girlfriend Mellody Hobson in a "beautiful" Californian service. George Lucas, the creator of Star Wars and Indiana Jones tied the knot with his girlfriend of seven years, Mellody Hobson. According to sources speaking with People magazine, the wedding took place on Saturday (22nd June) in California's Marin County at Lucas' 4,700 acre Skywalker Ranch. Amongst other guests, the wedding was attended by fellow director Ron Howard and actor Samuel L. Jackson, who plays Jedi Mace Windu in Lucas' Star Wars franchise.
Fans of reading and a certain galaxy far, far away have reason to rejoice: Star Wars Reads Day, a day-long celebration of literacy and Jedi, Sith, Wookiees, and all things Star Wars, is returning. The second annual Star Wars Reads Day is to be held this October 5, 2013, and will again feature Star Wars fans, authors, and artists coming together in a nationwide multi-publisher initiative. Participating publishing partners include Abrams, Chronicle Books, Dark Horse, Del Rey, DK, Quirk Books, Random House Audio, Scholastic, Titan Magazines, and Workman. Last year, 30 authors and 1,500 costumed volunteers participated in over 1,200 Star Wars Reads Day events across North America. "Star Wars Reads Day is the kind of initiative that we at Lucasfilm love to support" says Carol Roeder, Director of Publishing at Lucasfilm. "Reading and Star Wars have gone hand-in-hand since 1976, when the novelization of the original Star Wars movie was released. Over the years, many fans have discovered the joy in reading through Star Wars books, and we hope to continue encouraging more people to read."
Production has begun on Star Wars Rebels, an exciting, all-new animated television series based on one of the greatest entertainment franchises of all time. Scheduled to premiere in fall 2014 as a one-hour special telecast on Disney Channel, it will be followed by a series on Disney XD channels around the world. Leading the development of the series is a creative team of exceptional talent. Screenwriter/producer Simon Kinberg (X-Men: First Class, Sherlock Holmes, Mr. & Mrs. Smith) is an executive producer on Star Wars Rebels and will write the premiere episode. He is joined by Dave Filoni as executive producer, who served as supervising director of the Emmy nominated Star Wars: The Clone Wars since 2008. Executive producer Greg Weisman brings with him a wealth of animation experience with credits such as Young Justice, The Spectacular Spider-Man and Gargoyles.
Lucasfilm announced today that production of Star Wars: Episode VII will take place in the United Kingdom. All of the six previous live-action Star Wars movies have included UK production in such famed studios as Elstree, Shepperton, Leavesden, Ealing and Pinewood Studios. "We've devoted serious time and attention to revisiting the origins of Star Wars as inspiration for our process on the new movie, and I'm thrilled that returning to the UK for production and utilizing the incredible talent there can be a part of that," said Kathleen Kennedy, President of Lucasfilm. "Speaking from my own longstanding connection to the UK with films like Raiders of the Lost Ark, Empire of the Sun and recently War Horse, it's very exciting to be heading back."
Today it was announced that Lucasfilm Ltd. and Disney Interactive are entering into a multi-year, multi-title exclusive licensing agreement with Electronic Arts Inc. (EA) for the creation of new high quality Star Wars games aimed at the core gaming audience and spanning multiple genres for console, PC, mobile, and tablets. Industry leaders and creators of best-in-class blockbuster games, the development and publishing teams at EA will collaborate with the creative teams at Lucasfilm to provide audiences with all-new gaming experiences set in the ever-expanding Star Wars galaxy. As part of the agreement, EA studio teams DICE (Battlefield series) and Visceral (Dead Space series) will join BioWare (Mass Effect series, Star Wars: The Old Republic) in the development of new Star Wars games.
The dramatic fifth season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars garnered an impressive seven nominations today for Daytime Entertainment Emmy Awards by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. The series itself received an Outstanding Special Class Animated Program nomination, with George Lucas (executive producer), Cary Silver (producer), and Athena Portillo (line producer) recognized in the nomination. Honored with a nomination for their incredible directorial work on the series in the category Outstanding Directing in an Animated Program are Dave Filoni (supervising director), Kyle Dunlevy, Brian Kalin O'Connell, Steward Lea, and Bosco Ng (episodic directors).
May the 4th is approaching faster than an Ewok on a runaway speeder bike — are you ready? Just in case you’re in need of some inspiration, StarWars.com has compiled a list of 10 fun ways you can celebrate your love of a galaxy far, far away.
Harrison Ford was a guest on last night’s ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live!‘ to promote his movie ‘42‘ and naturally the discussion came around to ‘Star Wars: Episode 7‘ and the future of the franchise. Ford tried to stay mum and say he couldn’t talk about anything ‘Star Wars,’ but when he agreed to some questions from the audience, things got heated and Ford walked off the set. Watch video of the incident below.
Alan Horn, chairman of The Walt Disney Studios, announced today at CinemaCon in Las Vegas that Disney will release one Star Wars movie every summer beginning in 2015. Episode VII will kick off that schedule, after which the movies will alternate between spinoff films and Sequel Trilogy installments.
The man who first showed us the effects of the awesome powers of the dark side passed away suddenly on Monday 15th April 2013 in Austin, Texas. Richard Leparmentier, better known to millions of Star Wars fans as Admiral Conan Antonio Motti left an indelible imprint on the Star Wars galaxy, helping to illustrate the fearsome powers of Lord Vader as well as the arrogance and malice of a bloated and over-confident Empire.
The year was 1983. Return of the Jedi had been released to great fanfare on 25th May, breaking opening day records worldwide and bringing the original trilogy to a conclusion with a blast, resolving — for the next 32 years, at least — the fates of Luke, Leia, Han, Chewie, and the droids. As it had been for the previous six years, Star Wars was everywhere. But little did fans know, we were just a handful of years away from an era of Star Wars history known as The Dark Times.
After more than 40 years in the business it seems that Dennis Muren, the man who blew up the Death Star, thinks that special effects might have lost their lustre… Renowned for his work on the original 'Star Wars' trilogy, Dennis Muren is a legend amongst the visual effects industry. And while you might not have heard of him, you've almost certainly seen his work. Having contributed to an astonishing range of films including 'Star Wars', 'Indiana Jones' and even 'Jurassic Park', his influence stretches across some of the greatest films ever made. And now, as a Creative Director at ILM, Dennis helps to shape the way we watch some of the biggest blockbuster movies… but it seems he doesn't think special effects are as ground-breaking as they used to be.
Say "May the 4th Be With You" out loud and you'll hear the pun that Star Wars fans worldwide have turned into a rallying cry to proclaim their love of the saga. It's the worldwide day to say "May the Force be with you" to all, and celebrate the beloved Star Wars story that binds our galaxy together.
Christian Blauvelt over at Hollywood.com wrote an analysis post breaking down the announcement of a new Dark Horse miniseries that will adapt George Lucas' original Star Wars screenplay. "What's particularly striking," Blauvelt writes, "is how it sets up elements in A New Hope and The Phantom Menace in almost equal measure." For his story, Blauvelt also got some exclusive comments from Lucasfilm executive editor J.W. Rinzler, who is editing the miniseries.
That noise you just heard was the other shoe dropping: Lucasfilm said today that it will cease internal game development at LucasArts, following the company’s acquisition by Disney in November. “After evaluating our position in the games market, we’ve decided to shift LucasArts from an internal development to a licensing model, minimizing the company’s risk while achieving a broader portfolio of quality Star Wars games,” read a statement issued by Lucasfilm. “As a result of this change, we’ve had layoffs across the organization.”
The good folks over at Cosmic Book News have brought us another Star Wars movie rumor, this time regarding a possible spinoff film. Our source notes that the Lucasfilm friend who provided the information said the idea is being tossed around. * Set between Star Wars Episode III and Episode IV. * Said to feature Ewan McGregor reprising the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi in his exile on Tatooine. * The villain? Darth Maul hunting down his nemesis with a possible plot point involving a 5-year-old Luke Skywalker somehow tied into the story possibly as bait for Obi-Wan.