Dec 28, 2015

The best subtle moments of The Force Awakens

Just as most of the Star Wars film's have some subtle moments - Luke wearing white under his black costume in Jedi is a great one, The Force Awakens has it's fair share. Here's a few we've noticed.

Don't let the sun go down on me

In the climatic moment where Kylo Ren kills his father, Han Solo the light is bathing them both. Blue and red light flushes Kylo's face. He is torn between the dark side and the light side of the Force and appears to have to make a choice. He chooses the dark and the step towards it is a saber plunged into his brave father's chest. Just at the moment, the Star Killer sucks the last remnant of solar energy from the sun and thus dies, so too does any light left in Kylo Ren.

While it's not a wholly subtle moment - indeed, the lighting effects are in your face, what is somewhat subtle is the as the sun literally dies, Han Solo's son is lost to the dark side.

Prior to this moment, Poe Dameron makes a telling statement while his X-Wing squadron is attacking the Star Killer base. He tells them that have have a chance while there is still light, as did Han and Kylo.

A ray of light

Given a key theme of this movie is the dark and light side of the Force, we should take a brief moment to consider Rey's name. Spelt R-E-Y, it's said exactly the same as RAY as in Rey is a ray of light. That's a forest for the trees kind of subtle. As an aside, the scene where Rey defends herself is designed to show she can handle herself in combat. This subtly (along with Chewie's unsubtle bowcaster blast to Ren's chest) serves to inform the viewer that when Rey goes head to head with Kylo Ren  she has the necessary skills to stand her ground.

You're cold?

When Chewie complains about being cold whilst on the Star Killer base, Han gives him some ribbing for it as they are all cold in the ice he jests with the quote, "you're cold?" suggesting that because Chewie has fur, he shouldn't be. Later on as they are about to leave the installation, Chewie picked up Han's forgotten dropped jacket and gives it to him so he won't be cold as they are heading back out side.

It's a very quick moment but it serves to show that Chewie got Han's joke but that he was also looking out for his best friend.

An old friend makes a cameo appearance

There are plenty of cameo appearances in The Force Awakens but the voice-over by Ben Kenobi is the most interesting. During Rey's flash back sequence when she touches Luke's lightsaber, he hears Obi Wan call out to Rey "Rey! These are you first steps!". There's a lot going on in the flashback so it's arguably subtle - especially as this author missed it on first viewing! Even Yoda's voice was thrown into the mix.

Both Ewan Macgregor and Alec Guiness each feature in the same single line that can be heard during Rey's encounter with Luke's lightsaber. Alec does the 'Rey' part and Macgregor does the 'there are your first steps'. Here's how they managed this trick.
Han punched first

When Han chooses to push one of the bad guys into the path of the Rathtor beast that had been let loose on his freighter, that was the equivalent of Han shooting first - as we all know he did when confronted by the green Greedo in A New Hope.

Lor San Tekka is Boba Fett?

We're going out here on a limb but we think that Boba Fett is Lor San Tekka. We don't have much evidence other than the fact that his amour makes an apparent appearance in Chuck Wendig's Aftermath novel and that the novelization of The Force Awakens refers to Tekka as being a former soldier of fortune, which could fit the description of a bounty hunter.

That's all we've found and thought about so far - let us know what you've found in the comments and we'll add them to this piece! Want more moments? Check some subtle moments found in Revenge of the Sith.

Dec 25, 2015

Is Lor San Tekka actually Boba Fett?

I vaguely recall the internet being abuzz that the character we know know as Lor San Tekka was going to be a character we had originally seen in one of the Prequel Trilogy films. People threw out all kinds of suggestions.

And then the Boba Fett rumours started. And also that he was a cyborg robot kind of guy called Montrose. Or that he was a vicar.

So were any parts of this information correct? The truth is we have nothing concrete.

We do know in The Tales of the Bounty Hunters collection of short stories that Boba Fett survives the Sarlacc Pit. But that's no longer canon.

So in the Force Awakens we meet Lor San having a chin wag with Poe Dameron. He looks old and tired. He makes reference to Leia being royalty as if he knows her. There's is no clue at all that he's a retired Boba Fett.

So why are we asking this question? The novelisation of The Force Awakens suggests that Tekka is an old 'soldier of fortune' and that Kylo Ren knows him as such.

We think that it's probably not Boba Fett in retirement as the sentiments he shares regarding Leia to Poe Dameron suggest a relationship of sorts.

And then if you really want to get into it, why does Lor San Tekka have the map that leads to Luke's whereabouts? Would Luke share such a secret with a bounty hunter that had sold out him and his friends?

Can someone please ask JJ this the next time he get's interviewed?

Update - it was pointed out in the comments the lineage of Jango and Boba Fett - the actors that played them are both of Maori descent - Given that Max Von Sydow is most certainly not Maori - it would be a strange continuation of the character in that sense.

Daniel Craig's cameo in TFA as Storm Trooper: JB-007

Daniel Craig's cameo in TFA as Storm Trooper: JB-007

Daniel Craig's cameo in TFA as Storm Trooper: JB-007

When it was leaked that Daniel Craig was spied on the set of The Force Awakens in a Stormtrooper costume many assumed it would be a simple blink and you miss him moment.

It wasn't until after the film came out that insiders let out the secret - it was a genuine cameo performance by the James Bond star.

Craig was the Stormtrooper featured when Rey attempted to use the Force a la Ben Kenobi did with the troopers at Mos Eisely space port in ANH.

It's a risky scene as you just have to accept that Rey suddenly found her Force powers and was learning how to use them but if you do accept it, you get a great verbal exchange between Rey and the storm trooper credited as JB-007:

Rey: You will remove these restraints and leave this cell with the door open.
Stormtrooper: What did you say?
Rey: You will remove these restraints and leave this cell with the door open.
Stormtrooper: I will tighten these restraints, scavenger scum!
Rey: You will remove these restraints and leave this cell with the door open.
Stormtrooper: I will remove these restraints and leave this cell with the door open.
JB-007 leaves and Rey chances her arm once more:
Rey: You will drop your weapon.
Stormtrooper: annnnddddd I will drop my weapon.

A great exchange, one that might become a classic Star Wars quote now that everyone knows that James Bond was behind the mask of a Stormtrooper.

There's plenty of other cameos in The Force Awakens, our favourite being the message from Obi Wan Kenobi delivered by way of recordings from Alec Guiness and Ewan MacGregor.

Dec 23, 2015

Our favourite Chewbacca moments from The Force Awakens


Everybody loves the walking carpet known as Chewbacca. He's the ying to Han Solo's yang. Known for his loyalty to Han, he's been in 5 Star Wars movie and is considered an iconic character.

And so he returned for The Force Awakens. Peter Mayhew was literally rolled out one more time. Due to Mayhew's bad knees, heavy use was made of a double but it made no difference as The Force Awakens produced the definitive Chewbacca performance. Here's our favorite moments:

  • When Chewie complains about being cold whilst on the Star Killer base, Han gives him some ribbing for it as they are all cold in the ice. Later on Chewie picked up Han's jacket and gives it to him to he won't be cold as they are heading back out side. 
  • When Han and Chewie turn up for the first time. You'd already seen the trailer and knew it was coming but the feels when it happened in movie it was amazing.
  • When Chewie shoots Kylo Ren. It was more than just Chewbacca trying to get some form of Revenge, it was Chewie shooting someone he no doubt helped raise. But, he would have seen the choice that Kylo had made so he should feel bad about shooting him. The shot also helped level the playing field for Ren's duel with Rey.
  • Chewbacca then goes on a rage shooting at least 6 Storm Troopers in a row and then decides, 'screw it all, I'm blowing this place to hell' presumably to finish the mission but more than likely to try and kill Kylo.
  • When Chewie needs medical attention and he's battling with Finn. Finn probably has no idea of this particular Wookie's reputation and so is very persistent - to the point where he actually succeeds giving him first aid. Later Han suggests the Wookie likes Finn and so lets him treat him. It's a cute but subtle moment. 
  • Perhaps for this writer the saddest moment in the whole film was when Chewbacca has returned to the Resistance's base and finally has a quiet moment to himself and he puts his head down to mourn the loss of his best friend and quite possibly his only family (Lumpy doesn't count!).
  • Our favorite heroic moment was when Chewie pulled up in the Falcon to rescue Rey and Finn - he was still thinking of his new friends even at probably one of the lowest moments in his life. 

Dec 22, 2015

So how did they get Obi-Wan Kenobi into The Force Awakens?

So it wasn't until my second viewing of The Force Awakens that I heard Old Ben Kenobi call out to Rey during the flash back scene. I thought it was pretty exciting. At work the next day I was chatting like a school girl on speed with a couple of dudes who had seen the movie and they hadn't heard it so I doubted that I actually had heard it too. Wistful thinking on my part....

And then the internet went bonkers over the revelation from TFA's director JJ Abrams that yes, that was Obi-Wan Kenobi calling out to Rey and that the voice was that of both actors that have played Kenobi, the younger Ewan McGregor and the older, nominated for an Oscar for his turn at the role, Alec Guiness!

So what was the actual quote that Ben Kenobi called to Ren? It was:

Rey! These are your first steps

It turns out that Ewan had been called into to record this line of dialogue. Which is pretty cool as he was arguably the best thing about the Prequel Trilogy. He was the ultimate Obi-Wan in Revenge of the Sith and his part made Guinesses turn all the more special when you understand what the character went through.

So how did this happen that Guinness had a line as well as McGregor? You can thank producer Bryan Burkk for surprising JJ with some dialogue that Guinness had recorded when he said the word 'afraid'.The sound engineers were able to take the Rey sounding syllable as it was phrased just the way the script needed it. McGregor's words were used for the rest of the line.

Abrams said of the cameo appearance:

“The idea of the voices was, we wanted the audience to feel – but not necessarily be presented right in your face — this idea that familiar, Force-strong voices were connecting with her. At least as well as they could."

Given this, the words "Rey! These are your first steps" are a very big clue that Rey is on her way to becoming a Jedi. But first she has to convince Luke to train her.....


More things Kenobi:

So how did they get Obi-Wan Kenobi into The Force Awakens?
Was Gandalf the inspiration for Obi-Wan Kenobi?
Is Wedge Antilles really Obi-Wan Kenobi's Uncle? Yes, from a certain point of view.
Is the best ever cosplay of Obi-Wan Kenobi?
The best Obi-Wan quotes this side of the galaxy (it’s far, far away)
This is the last time Anakin and Obi-Wan spoke as friends.

Dec 18, 2015

Made a new friend last night !

At the work Christmas 80s party, this bloke struck gold with his Jabba suit! 

Dec 16, 2015

Review of The Force Awakens - in which we discuss spoilery things.

She's not no one.
This review contains spoilers and discussion of them so hit the jump if you dare.

The Hollywood stars had literally aligned for this movie. The 'big three' of Luke, Leia and Han were back (despite some fan's concern Luke wasn't featured in promo for the film). Peter and Anthony were also back to play C3PO and the Walking Carpet.  JJ Abrams had gotten some 'practice Star Trek films' under his belt and was given the job of being the brains and face of the new Star Wars production company. Empire and Jedi scribe Larry Kasdan had come back to the writing team after Michael Ardnt set the ball in motion.  New acting talent had been found and a true mix of the old and new ways of making movies was often spoken of.

And the trailers were beautiful. But, so was the trailer for The Phantom Menace and many Star Wars fans to this day still cry that that film destroyed their fondest childhood memories (get over it - Ed).

So, should we have been brave enough to truly believe in this movie?

Dec 8, 2015

Snap! It's Temmin Wexley! Here's his quotes from The Force Awakens.

Greg Grunberg has revealed the name of his character in The Force Awakens:


We think that's probably the best name of all the new ones.

Greg's character is an X-Wing pilot and is presumed to be the equivalent of Wedge Antilles from the first set of films.

Snap is the nickname of the character - argubaly because he's allways snapping his fingers. Snap's first appearance in the Star Wars canon was in Chuck Wendig's Aftermath.

Grunberg is best known for his turns on the Heroes show. He's a long term friend of JJ Abrams who has previously cast in minor roles in Mission Impossible III, Lost and Super 8.

Here's a quote:

“Watch out for ground fire!” – said as he's taking part in the Battle of Starkiller base.

Dec 7, 2015

Why we think that it was dumb luck that Phasma’s armour doesn’t feature breasts.

Why we think that it was dumb luck that Phasma’s armour doesn’t feature breasts.

News that Captain Phasma was originally intended to be played by a male makes us wonder about the true story of the development of the design of the character’s chrome armour.

Much ado was made of Gwendoline Christie’s character being a female and a strong female villain at that.

Let’s be clear, this is a great thing for Star Wars.

A leap into the 21st century where girl power is not a singing phenomenon from Britain but an expectation of many discerning film fans that the films they love have strong, well developed and meaningful female characters. 

You might recall how the official Star Wars site did somesocial media when a fan attempted to not be sexist but totally succeeded:

But he got smashed in reply:

“It’s armour. On a woman. It doesn’t have to look feminine.”

We’re not disputing that the armour doesn't need to reflect the female form but we’re wondering what dumb luck lead to that to be the case. 

We understand that it was a last minute decision in the few weeks prior to the filming of the Force Awakens that lead to Christie being cast as Captain Phasma.

At this point the film was well down the production path and the designs for Phasma were probably done and it is quite PROBABLE that the costume for Captain Phasma had already been made.

TFA writer Lawrence Kasdan has said the choice for Christie to be the Captain came after there were loud rumblings on the net that Rey was seemingly the only new female for the franchise.

Indeed, JJ Abrams has said that the chrome suit was original under consideration as a concept for how Kylo Ren would look.

If this theory is correct, it was dumb luck that meant that Phasma’s chrome form was more 'masculine' and not designed in the more traditional feminine style.

Which means the whole “It doesn’t have to look feminine” retort is possibly too cute – only in the sense that it was lucky that the design was as such prior to Christie being cast.

Who knew what the designers would have come up with for Phasma if they knew the character would be played by a female.

Breast armour?

We can only but speculate.

We could of course be absolutely completely wrong as one wonders that the physical suit could have needed to be adjusted / fashioned depending on whomever was cast so it was possibly ripe for any shape or size of person.

At the end of the day, it doesn't matter that it was dumb luck (or not). That's just an amusing thought that's only based on the speculation of this writer.

We actually think people love Phasma on first sight because the armour actually looks amazing and when we first saw her walking towards the camera in the second film trailer, we got that instant menacing vibe, the kind we got when we first saw Darth Maul ignite his red double light saber. 

Let's hope the character actually delivers some kick ass in the film. 

The real last thought should be left to Gwendoline Christie who will forever own this character:

“And the reason I love my character so much and I feel so enthusiastic about Captain Phasma is, yes, she’s cool, she looks cool, she’s a villain — but more than that, we see a female character and respond to her not because of the way she looks.

We respond to her because of her actions. I think we’re a society that has promoted a homogenized idea of beauty in women — and in men — and I think it’s really interesting, modern and necessary to have a female character that isn’t about the way her body looks.

Dec 1, 2015

Sales of the Prequel Trilogy are doing quite well at the moment

Star Wars's biggest fan / analyst Mike Klimo (of Rings Theory fame) pointed out this great sales chart of all the Star Wars films on Blu Ray in a very recent week. Note how well the prequels have been doing:

Guess they must be alright movies after all eh? While the haters might say, well all those people might hate them too after watching them but we say 4 million Blu Ray buyers can't all be wrong ;) 

Nov 30, 2015

BB-8 concept art

This is apparently some genuine concept art for BB-8 from The Force Awakens. It looks like the design was well advanced prior to the artist getting to work on this set of robot design.

Nov 29, 2015

How the test launch of the TIE Fighter prototype for filming of A New Hope went terribly, terribly wrong.

It’s not a very well known fact but in the pre-production for the very first Star Wars movie Lucasfilm actually made a working Tie Fighter prototype which they thought they would use to film the dog fights with X-Wing’s that were intended to take place in the Battle of Yavin, the climax of the movie. 

 The idea was that TIE would be filmed by way of it chasing a small light aircraft which was rigged with cameras. The light aircraft would make steep banking maneuvers with sharp twists and turns so as to mimic what film director George Lucas thought the X-Wings would fly like when being chased in a dog fight.

tie fight test pilot ejection
Eject! Eject!
This was a great idea until the very first test flight of the TIE fighter which was undertaken over the Bonneville Salt Flats in February 1975 some two years before the film's release. The TIE’s launch was an epic fail. Obviously the TIE doesn't have wheels for a standard take off so a vertical take off was required. This entailed the ship being launched by way of two small rockets that would fall off when the TIE was 50 feet in the air at which point, the single main thruster rocket would engage for flight.

The first part was successful, the TIE made it into the air however the main thruster failed to ignite properly. With no propulsion available, the TIE pilot (Ex US Army Test Pilot, Gilbert Taylor) had no choice to immediately eject.

The TIE disintegrated on impact with the Earth and George Lucas was forced to use models to create the famous end battle of Star Wars. 

And if you've read this far without getting the joke, I've got a Star Destroyer that's parked on Jakku to sell you! 

Nov 22, 2015

Everything you need to know about plant D’Qar

The planet D'Qar is where the Resistance is located in the The Force Awakens.

The base was first strongly hinted at in the Star Wars novel, Lost Stars:

“We should list this planet as a potential base in the future. The Empire’s not interested, not much space lane traffic in this area, plus there’s plenty of water.

This time round, the Resistance is lead at D'Qar by Princess Commander Leia. If you think of it as the equivalent of the Rebel base on Hoth or or main miltary base on Yavin, you'll get the drift.

Here's the official description:

A lush world in the Outer Rim, D’Qar is the principal base of General Leia Organa’s Resistance. Rebel pilots first surveyed the planet before the Battle of Endor, and D’Qar housed a small Alliance outpost that went largely unused in the New Republic’s war with the Empire. The planet’s obscurity and lack of native intelligent life made it a perfect choice when General Organa’s new group needed a hidden base of operations.

Nov 21, 2015

Lor San Tekka quotes from The Force Awakens

Lor San Tekka quotes from The Force Awakens

Played by the wondrous actor Max Von Sydow of The Exorcist and Minority Report fame, Tekka is the old vicar residing on Jakku that has a dark secret in the Force Awakens, a secret that Kylo Ren wants badly enough to kill him for. It's the map that leads to where Luke resides. How and when he got the map, no one knows.


"This will help make things right again".

"Without The Jedi, There Can Be No Balance In The Force."

Nov 8, 2015

Does TFA really have a reference to Apocalypse Now?

With the release of the international / Japanese trailer for The Force Awakens there has been some new material to check out - including this awesome shot of Tie Fighters flying with Jakku's fiery sun to their backs. I saw someone suggesting it had an Apocalypse Now vibe to it.

And you know what, it kind of does....

If this is indeed a deliberate reference, it would have been done with the knowledge that Harrison Ford had a small role at the start of the movie. His character was called Lucas - a nod to the director's friendship with George Lucas. Apocalypse was shot before Star Wars but not released until after.

It should be totally stated for clarity that the Apocalypose film does not have an exact like for like shot as found in the TFA, hence the use of the word reference in this post. 

Nov 4, 2015

Carrie Fisher's 'solo' promotional poster for The Force Awakens

This official poster of Carrie Fisher to promote The Force Awakens is grace personified. We're betting those silver earrings become must have accessories!

carrie fisher force awakens poster

Nov 3, 2015

Anakin Skywalker quotes - the good ones before he became Darth Vader anyway.

Love him or hate him, Anakin Skywalker was an integral part of the Star Wars prequel films.

We guess there's almost a 50:50 split amongst the fandom.

While some moan about how he doesn’t 'like sand', others revel in his massacre of the Younglings in the Jedi Temple.

Either way, both the child and adult versions of the Chosen One had a lot to say!

Here’s a selection of Anakin’s best quotes from the prequel movies – all before he became Darth Vader – which we count as when Anakin first steps out in his new & shinny black costume after getting his legs handed to him by Obi-Wan at the conclusion of their epic lightsabre duel.

The Phantom Menace

Anakin was played by Jake Lloyd, the kid who had made his name as the kid in Arnold Schwarzenegger’s shocker of a Christmas movie, Jingle All the Way. He attracted a lot of hate for his acting and having to say lines such as “are you an ange?l” but anyone who dismisses his “now this is pod racing!” moment during one of the most thrilling chases in Star Wars, simply doesn’t like Star Wars. Haters are gonna hate but they need to chill out.

Here's little Ani's quotes

Anakin: Are you an angel?
Queen Amidala: What?
Anakin: An angel. I've heard the deep space pilots talk about them. They live on the moons of Iego, I think. They're the most beautiful creatures in the universe.
Queen Amidala: You're a funny little boy. How do you know so much?
Anakin: I listen to all the traders and star pilots who come through here. I'm a pilot, you know, and someday I'm going to fly away from this place.

Anakin: Mom, you said that the biggest problem in the universe is no one helps each other.

Perhaps the most cringing moment in the whole movie, it however served to show that Anakin started out with a pure heart.

Anakin: You're a Jedi Knight, aren't you?
Qui-Gon Jinn: What makes you think that?
Anakin: I saw your laser sword. Only Jedi carry that kind of weapon.
Qui-Gon Jinn: Perhaps I killed a Jedi and took it from him.
Anakin: I don't think so. No one can kill a Jedi.
Qui-Gon Jinn: I wish that were so.

A nice piece of foreshadowing what was to become of Anakin.

Anakin: What are midi-chlorians?
Qui-Gon Jinn: Midi-chlorians are a microscopic life form that resides within all living cells.

A lot of Star Wars fans hated this exchange as for them it removed some of the mysteriousness of the Force.

Anakin: Now this is pod racing!

Anakin: I will come back and free you mom, I promise

Anakin did eventually come back to free Shimi however it was from the Tuskens who had treated her so poorly, she was too die shortly afterward.

Anakin: Qui-Gon told me to stay in this cockpit, and that's what I'm going to do!

And the boy that could, did. He was drawn into the space battle above Naboo and helped break the so called blockade by destroying the Droid Control Ship.

Attack of the Clones quotes by Anakin Skywalker

Nothing to do with Anakin, it's just cool concept art!
In this film Anakin was played by Hayden Christensen who at the point of his casting was probably most well known for his part in Sofia Coppola's The Virgin Suicides and various television roles.

Christensen is often scorned for his acting in this movie however many people ignore or where ignorant that George Lucas wanted his actors to deliver their lines in a deliberate manner to pay homage to the movies that inspired Lucas AND you could actually argue his efforts are no worse than Mark Hamill's whinny Luke, "But I was going into Tosche Station to pick up some power converters!"

Any ways, here's some Anakin quotes from Attack of the Clones:

Padmé Amidala: You're not all-powerful, Ani.
Anakin Skywalker: Well, I should be.

Anakin: I don't like sand. It's coarse and rough and irritating and it gets everywhere. Not like here. Here everything is soft and smooth.

This quote is most often used to highlight how terrible Attack of the Clones is due in part to the apparent poor scripting and bad acting. In his defence, George Lucas has consistently said that he specially wanted this style of voice acting as that’s how it was in the good old days of Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers.

Padme: You're making fun of me!
Anakin: Oh, no, I'd be too frightened to tease a senator!

Anakin: I've got a bad feeling about this.

A famous line uttered by every major character in the film franchise.

Obi-Wan: Why do I get the feeling you're going to be the death of me?
Anakin: Don't say that, master. You're the closest thing I have to a father.

A light moment for the film but for those who know how the relationship played out, a dark reminder. It was some nice foreshadowing their by Lucas. There's a lot of that in the prequel films.

Anakin: I killed them. I killed them all. They're dead, every single one of them. And not just the men, but the women and the children, too. They're like animals, and I slaughtered them like animals. I hate them!

Anakin raged this quote after he had returned from rescuing his mother from the Tusken people. It’s seen as one of the first times that Anakin went astray from his Jedi training and strayed to the Dark Side of the Force.

Revenge of the Sith quotes by Anakin Skywalker

Anakin Skywalker: Obi-Wan, may the force be with you.
Obi-Wan Kenobi: Goodbye old friend. May the force be with you.

This was a telling moment in the film – it is the last time that Obi-Wan and Anakin talk as friends. Lucas deliberated filmed the scene as Anakin standing in the shadow, Obi-Wan the light, thus signalling the path each was about to taken

If you want to read what Anakin said in the later movies, check out these Darth Vader quotes.

The rest of these quotes occur during and after Anakin and Obi-Wan's epic light saber duel.

Obi-Wan: You were the chosen one! It was said that you would destroy the Sith, not join them. You were to bring balance to the force, not leave it in darkness.

Obi-Wan Kenobi: You have allowed this dark lord to twist your mind, until now, until now you've become the very thing you swore to destroy.

Anakin Skywalker: Don't lecture me, Obi-Wan! I see through the lies of the Jedi. I do not fear the dark side as you do. I have brought peace, freedom, justice, and security to my new Empire.

Obi-Wan Kenobi: Your new Empire?

Anakin Skywalker: Don't make me kill you.

Obi-Wan Kenobi: Anakin, my allegiance is to the Republic, to democracy.

Anakin Skywalker: If you're not with me, then you're my enemy.
Obi-Wan Kenobi: Only a Sith deals in absolutes.
Obi-Wan Kenobi: I will do what I must.

This is a most talked about moment between our two jedi friends. George Lucas used this scene as a comment of sorts on American politics. During the so called War on Terror, George Bush used the with us or against us argument – to the frustration of many people, Lucas included.

Obi-Wan: It's over Anakin, I have the high ground.
Anakin Skywalker: You underestimate my power!
Obi-Wan: Don't try it.
Anakin Skywalker: I hate you.
Obi-Wan: You were my brother, Anakin. I loved you.

Return of the Jedi

You thought we forgot this movie didn't you?

It's very arguable that at the moment Darth Vader chose to save his son Luke's life by throwing his Sith Master down the shaft, he became Anakin Skywalker again.

Here's the conversation that the redeemed Anakin has with his son. 

Darth Vader: Luke... help me take this mask off.
Luke: But you'll die.
Darth Vader: Nothing... can stop that now. Just for once... let me... look on you with my own eyes.
Anakin: Now... go, my son. Leave me.
Luke: No. You're coming with me. I'll not leave you here, I've got to save you.
Anakin: You already... have, Luke. You were right. You were right about me. Tell your sister... you were right.
Luke: Father... I won't leave you.

Want to read some more sweet things about Darth Vader? 

Try this click bait on for size:

7 tragic things about Darth Vader.
Why did Darth Vader turn to the dark side of The Force? (if you were living under a rock).
10 Darth Vader quotes that show he was the worst Sith Lord ever (but possibly the greatest Jedi)

Oct 20, 2015

Is this the equivalent of Luke's two suns vista?

PZ-4CO quotes from The Force Awakens

PZ-4CO quotes from The Force Awakens

While everyone may have noticed the introduction of BB-8 into the Star Wars canon, eagle eyed fans quickly spied the big blue robot, known as PZ-4CO.

Colloquially known as Peazy, his role is to offer tactical data and communications support during important operations. He is a constant at Commander Leia's side in the Control Room.

We can't seem him and C3PO being the best of friends...

PZ-4CO quotes

Update: He says nothing in the movie!!!!

Whomever runs the Star Wars Facebook page has done it again

We thought the Phasma armour reposte was a pretty handy piece of social media - but whoever runs the Star Wars Facebook page has earned their pay check this week!

Obviously the trailer for The Force Awakens dropped and broke the internet - and the official Star Wars Facebook crew found Mark Zuckerberg commenting on their post - to which they responded with a play on Han Solo's classic line to Leia, "I know":

Cheeky? Maybe. Social media mastery? We think it's worthy of admission to the Jedi Council...

Oct 18, 2015

The Starkiller base was inspired by original Star Wars designer, Ralph McQuarrie

Andy pointed out a very cool thing about the TFA's Star Killer base - it's quite likely it was Ralph McQuarrie inspired. Who's that you may ask? He's the designer of the original look for Star Wars - the man who drew what Lucas was thinking and turned them into a visual feast.

So in terms of the Starkiller base as spied in the background of the The Force Awakens poster (See below), Andy suggested that there was an element of design taken from some concept art that McQuarrie did for the original Death Star. Note the circular 'eye' at the top of the image:

And now compare that to the image of the Starkiller base found in the TFA's official poster:

Seems familiar enough? You could argue that Death Stars and Star Killers simply need to have big round holes so the weapon can be fired through and I accept that, the point is that McQuarrie did it first.

But could argue that in the McQuarrie image, that eye is not a weapon but a landing hangar...

BUT, here's some more McQuarrie concept art which shows the trench line that's similar to what is happening on the Star Killer base, and a distinct weapon hole. Help me out wise fans, what's the actual name for that?

11 really really serious questions about The Force Awakens Poster. And some not so serious.

Questions about The Force Awakens Poster
  1. Who does Leia’s hair?
  2. If Luke is not on the poster, where is he?
  3. Why Gwendoline Christie’s name not on the credits?
  4. Did you spot that Harrison has first billing over Hamill?
  5. You guessed that’s Maz Katana right?
  6. So what did Arndt do to get his script credit?
  7. How the heck did the First Order turn an ice planet into a Starkiller weapon.
  8. How do you drive such a planet /weapon?
  9. Does it have a hyper drive?
  10. Do the parallel positioning of Kylo’s sword and Rey’s staff meaning any parallels in the movie?
  11. Is the red  / blue sabers triangle thing a reference to a new holy trinity?
  12. No 'inspired by George' Lucas style credit? 

Michael Arndt gets a screen credit after all that fuss!

When Michael Arndt was 'relieved' of his Star Wars writing duties, the internet lost it's collective mind and wondered if the sky was falling. What kind of idiot gets himself replaced on a Star Wars gig? Oh, wait,  Josh Trank did though....

We suggested everyone watch Netflix and chill.

Now that the official Force Awakens movie poster has been released, we can see that the Oscar winner has received a formal screenwriters credit on the film and that adds up to work must have been used in some substantive form.

This should really not be a surprise as Kathleen Kennedy said nice things about Arndt's work at the time:

"Michael Arndt has done a terrific job bringing us to this point and we have an amazing filmmaking and design team in place already prepping for production."

Given it is thought JJ and Kasdan did a story based script, one could assume Arndt's work that was kept was likely in the mode of ideas, thematic concepts, characters, names and places. It doesn't just have to be character dialogue!

The story of Star Wars film scripts has always been interesting - it's a tale in itself of how Lucas brought Star Wars into being. Two interesting moments are the role that Leigh Brackett had in Empire and what Johnathan Hales did to deserve a credit on Attack of the Clones (and who did some uncredited work!).

The official The Force Awakens poster has been released

This is more like it ! Note the clear absence of Luke Skywalker and the direct placement of Rey front and center! How times have changed since Return of the Jedi.

If you had any doubts, this poster clearly demonstrates who the important characters in The Force Awakens are - Rey, Fin and of course the mysterious Kylo Ren. 

The poster was done by Bryan Morton. 

Oct 13, 2015

Hamill says he never called Princess Leia, 'Carrie' in A New Hope

"Carrie! Leia!"

Mark Hamill says he never called Carrie, Carrie at the end of A New Hope

For years and years since A New Hope was first screened, there has been a story that the original version featured Mark Hamill’s Luke greeting Leia as ‘Carrie’ apon his arrival from destroying the Death Star.

 I’d never seen any video or audio that confirmed this but had sort of just accepted it as being true (having not picked up on it in any movie viewings!). 

After all, there’s been a lot of Star Wars trivia unveiled over the years – and the same movie itself has the odd other goof in it, most notably the Stormtrooper who bumps his head!

Mark Hamill has now gone on the record to say this never happened and the idea is total bullshit.

Here’s his tweet  that explains his point of view:

 This was in response to a tweet by @velvetgeek who asked Hamill to weigh in.

So there you have it, it’s a myth that Hamill calls Leia by the actor’s name.  There’s plenty of other Star Wars myths that have been busted – our favourite myth being that the Falcon was originally FILMED as blowing up inside the Death Star in Jedi.

Sep 24, 2015

Ello Asty is born to ill...

Ello Asty is 'born to ill'
If you've ever watched a Star Trek movie by JJ Abrams, you may have noticed he quite likes the Beastie Boys. And that love has had a we influence on The Force Awakens.

The Star Wars Databank describes a pilot,  Ello Asty as being a skilled if occasionally reckless X-wing starfighter pilot for the Resistance.

Turn out that the name Ello Asty is likely a play on the Beastie's work Hello Nasty.

How do we know this true and is not just some over reading into things by Star Wars fan boys?

Yak Face, as some have perhaps rudely called him also has the words 'Born to Ill' on his helmet.

Check out the writing on Asty's helment by his right check - it translates as born to ill.

Check out Ello Asty's quotes from TFA.

Sep 13, 2015

Doug Chiang's Kylo Ren concept art

When every Star Wars story has been told and the bones are picked apart, the name Doug Chiang will stand proudly along side names like Joe Johnston and Ralph McQuarrie as being one of the great influences of how Star Wars looked and thus felt. Chiang was notably hugely influential in how the Prequel Trilogy looked by way of his concept art. 

kylo ren by Doug Chiana

He was asked to do The Force Awakens as well – and while a lot of concept art has leaked, this shot of Kylo Ren in the forrest is the first official piece of concept art from TFA by Chiang. It’s more post production concept art than the kind of work that’s done when one is just doodling ideas, however it is striking in its statement: There is evil on the ground again.

This work of art can be found in the book The Art of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Sep 10, 2015

Who are the Acolytes of the Beyond from The Force Awakens? What is the connection to Kylo Ren and the Knights?

Early concept art of Kylo Ren with Vader's burnt helmet
"Acolytes of the Beyond" is a group of four words that dropped into Star Wars canon last week in the book Aftermath How they fit into the canon, we have no idea but we’re pretty to happy to speculate.

The book Aftermath introduced the acolytes who said to be trying to buy Vader's saber from someone to 'destroy it and return it to its master in death.

First of all, what is an acolyte? Is that something found in Gatorade? No, an acolyte is someone who performs religious duties as part of a ceremony or who has been inducted into a particular ministry.

In this case, the acolytes are presumably in the ‘ministry’ of whatever the Beyond is. We could presume the Beyond is the realm of the Force inhabited by Force ghosts such as Gui-Gon Gin, Obi-Wan Kenobi and good old Yoda.

Remember, if Qui-Gon can learn its tricks, so can Darth Sidious.

I definitely did deliberately leave out mentioning Anakin in that line up as I think it would seem obvious to suggest that given Kylo Ren is hunting down Sith artifiacts, including Vader's worldly possessions- see the above leaked concept art for the big hint. 

For a long time prior to the release of Aftermath,  the word on the street was that the saber given to Luke by Obi-Wan i.e. Anakin’s weapon is the so called MacGuffin of the The Force Awakens). It would seem this would be true given the reference to people hunting for Vader's saber in Aftermath (of course, the second trailer shows the saber being handed from Maz Katana to General Leia as well.....)

It's a waste of time though for the Acolytes as Vader reverted to Anakin after his death in Return of the Jedi. He has no need for a saber anymore...

If this is indeed true, it would seem a fair bet the Kylo Ren is an Acolyte of the Beyond or has some affiliation to it.

That said, JJ Abrams let it be known that Kylo Ren is part of what is called the Knights of Ren. We expect them to turn up in the Force Awakens as a kind of Sinister Seven – possibly in a flash back scene in which they kill a few Jedi. That’s all speculation of course. Well researched speculation though…


The above could be all wrong however. Here's a cut from the Aftermath book where a new interpretation of Beyond could mean.

"No Sith remains. And the lone Jedi that exists--the son of Anakin Skywalker--possesses an untouchable soul. At least for now. We must instead move towards the dark side. Palpatine felt that the universe beyond the edges of our map was where his power came from. Over the many years he, with our aid, sent men and women beyond known space. They built labs and communication stations on distant moons, asteroids, out there in the wilds. We must follow them. Retreat from the Galaxy. Go out beyond the veil of stars. We must seek the source of the dark side like a man looking for a wellspring of water."

It's literally the Great Beyond..... 

Sep 9, 2015

Star Wars just got so gay. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Remember the rightful fuss some people made that there wasn't enough new female characters in The Force Awakens? They got what they wanted eventually - all part of the JJs slow release of of information.

Why did they get upset? Because people want diversity in their Star Wars.

Same goes for having gay characters in the Star Wars realm. The need to diversity to reflect more modern approaches to sexuality.

Apparently some folk are upset that there are gays running round now, especially in Chuck Wendig's canon novel, Aftermath. They apparently don't want diversity.

There's something wrong with that attitude.

Chuck Wendig rightly thinks so too and posted this absolutely fantastic reponse to the haters in this blog post:

'And if you’re upset because I put gay characters and a gay protagonist in the book, I got nothing for you. Sorry, you squawking saurian — meteor’s coming. And it’s a fabulously gay Nyan Cat meteor with a rainbow trailing behind it and your mode of thought will be extinct. You’re not the Rebel Alliance. 

You’re not the good guys. You’re the fucking Empire, man. You’re the shitty, oppressive, totalitarian Empire. If you can imagine a world where Luke Skywalker would be irritated that there were gay people around him, you completely missed the point of Star Wars.

It’s like trying to picture Jesus kicking lepers in the throat instead of curing them. Stop being the Empire. Join the Rebel Alliance. We have love and inclusion and great music and cute droids.'

Nayan cat meteors indeed.

I think it's safe to assume that Kim Davis won't be reading Aftermath any time soon.

Sep 7, 2015

Anthony Daniels has become a cranky old man and we love him for it.

In a recent interview, C3PO’s heart and soul, Anthony Daniels shared some incredible insights into how he feels about a few Star Wars related things.

He suggested that Disney had acted like the Kremlin when he tweeted that he had met Simon Pegg on the set of Star Wars.

 This was apparently supposed to be a secret, however it was a pretty open one across the web.

For those that don’t know, the reference to the Kremlin is a suggestion that Disney acts like the Russian government, and they don’t tolerate dissent, free speech or the like.

That was amusing enough, and good on Daniels for speaking his mind.

But things get even better, Daniels goes on to totally diss the Prequel Trilogy! Check this statement:

“Ah, the prequels… The effects are clever but pointless. The skill is there, but so what? Coldness, that’s the word. Bleakness, even.”

We understand that Daniels made a condition of his appearance in The Force Awakens that his character would not be CGI. One can see why he did that if his experience filming the OT films was so bleak…

There is some shining light for the Golden Rod though. He is effusive with praise for the approach Disney and JJ are taking with the new film with a contrast on how Lucas did thing:

“[Lucas] has changed a lot over the years, but I think he finds it slightly hard to collaborate.  He made decisions that I believe might have been better discussed with other people. J.J. is more collaborative. He likes to listen… It became clear early on that with J.J. we were getting back to the old-fashioned kind of film-making. We have walls. Actual sets!”

So there we go. 

Facts and Triva about Kylo Ren

Everything we know about Kylo Ren thus far:
  • Kylo Ren is an adopted name.
  • His true origins are unknown at this time.
  • Ren comes from The Knights of Ren, a mysterious group.
  • His red lightsaber was made by himself. 
  • Ren is played by Adam Driver.
  • He reports to General Hux and Supreme Commander Snoke of the First Order
  • He is an artifact collector, and has Darth Vader's mask in his possession.
  • He likes to burn villages down

Any thing else is probably scuttlebut but I like these ideas:
  • He is possibly a part of the Accolytes of Beyond.
  • He is possibly of Solo / Organa parentage

Aug 28, 2015

This piece of Star Wars social media is a gem

Remember the crap people were throwing JJs way when so few woman were supposedly cast in The Force Awakens?

The people who run the Star Wars Facebook page clearly know a thing or two about handling sexism issues in this new Star Wars / social media era.

Check out this response to a fanboy / troll comment about Captain Phasma's armour:

Simply Brilliant.

Aug 17, 2015

So all this fuss about Amy Schumer and no one cares about everything else that has come before?

Princess Leia's slave bikini from Return of the Jedi is an iconic part of Star Wars. Serving to titillate young men everywhere (and maybe young women too), that gold bikini has become the gold standard for all kinds of measures. Am I as pretty as Leia? Should I wear a gold bikini to a cosplay convention? What if I'm just taking the piss. What if my children see a woman wearing a gold bikini and this offends me?

Amy Schumer naked in bed with R2D2 and C3PO

Enter Amy Schumer. An 'overnight' success in the sense that she's popular after years of hard work. So what does she do? She dons the gold bikini and sexes it up by giving oral pleasure to a blue lightsaber and having an apparent threesome with R2D2 and C3PO.

And queue the outrage across the internet! Twitter was abuzz. Abuzz! So much so some one in the official Star Wars camp felt the need to tweet about the outrage:

It was nearly up there with people getting out raged that Sansa was raped in Game of Thrones.


But as with that show where there had already been been plenty of raping and abuse of female characters, the moment something ugly and brutal happened to a fan favourite and no one really said much (Jaime and his sister excluded), all bets were off and fans were outraged that Leia's image had been compromised.

Same thing with Amy Schumer. She was accused of being disgusting. Sure, she was proactive and pushing a line where some people may not be comfortable but no one card when America's Next Top Model donned the same golden bikini and kicked Jar Jar in the nuts. Maybe that's because a lot of people hate Jar Jar so don't care. Maybe that's because Amy Schumer isn't America's Next Top Model. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Mark Hamill approved though. Bless his dirty heart.

Amy won't care regardless, she got the publicity she wanted, which frankly is what it is all about.

While fans will love and adore Star Wars and let it become a part of their heart and soul, they need to remember the owner of Star Wars is all about making money, and sex sells baby, sex sells.

Aug 16, 2015

Rogue One is 'A Star Wars Story'

So. Rogue One now officially has a descriptor with its title.

“A Star Wars Story”

This is clearly a device to help inform people that RogueOne is actually a Star Wars movie so they should part with their money and go see the movie as filler until VIII comes out. I say filler in the loosest sense ever.

But is it necessary to describe Rogue One as a Star Wars movie? It’s almost redundant as when it comes time to market the movie THE ENTIRE UNIVERSE WILL BE INFORMED THAT IT IS A STAR WARS MOVIE. All eyes will be on it and the huge cross it will have to bear. 

What cross do I refer to? I’m taking about the load of expectations fan boys and casual movie goers will have for it as it follows on the heels of The Force Awakens... 

TFA will be a massive hit, no matter what. It will be the biggest movie of 2015 and will beat what Jurassic World did. And there will be a demand for a repeat dose of it in Rogue One. Further, if TFA fails critically, people will be looking to Rogue One to remedy any mistakes made in that movie (there will be mistakes and missteps, it will be impossible for JJ Abrams and Disney to not to).

What’s interesting to note is that as part of the official Rogue One casting announcement, the film is simply referred to as Rogue One with no mention of ‘A Star Wars Story’.

So what about these films being touted as ‘anthology’ films.

Well, an anthology is just a collection of stories or tales or songs so these Star Wars films (stories – Ed) should be able to be packaged together as an anthology – but I reckon the change has been made as too many people questioned the use of anthology or were confused by it. Confused in, how can a release of a single film and another two years later be called (or marketed as) an anthology?

Any ways, who cares, we’re getting more Star Wars and we cant.hardly.wait. 

Aug 12, 2015

Where does Poe Dameron’s name come from?

If you’ve never heard of Morgan Dameron in the context of Star Wars, the answer to where does Poe Dameron’s name orginate from should perhaps now be obvious.

Morgan Dameron is JJ Abrams’s long time assistant and the inspiration for the name of The Force Awaken’s heroic X-Wing pilot.

JJ, who wrote the script of The Force Awakens with Lawrence Kasdan said:

“Dameron came out because it was, obviously, a name that I know, and it just musically felt right.There was no sort of deep reasoning behind it, and I also knew it would make Morgan blush if we named a character that. So she had this giant smile on her face.”

That’s the surname sorted. What about Poe?

“We went through a bunch of different names, and Poe ultimately felt like the right name. Someone reminded me recently that my daughter had had a polar bear named Poe [or Po’ — short for “polar”], and that might’ve been why it felt right. There was a kind of sweetness to, and a charm to that name."

So Polar bears eh? Anyone body remember a small TV show called Lost that JJ Abrams produced? That featured a polar bear didn’t it?

Who are the Knights of Ren? We ask the same questions you have...

Who and what are the Knights of Ren?

JJ’s recently revealed thoughts on Kylo Ren reveal a character that’s simply more than just a bad guy.

If you recall in the Star Wars prequels that the Darth in Darth Vader was not a simple name such as David or Simon but rather a title that signified the title bearer was a Sith Lord. The Force Awakens director JJ Abrams have revealed that he and scriptwriter Lawrence Kasdan have cooked up a similar trick for the villain of their movie, Kylo Ren.

Remember how we eventually learned that “Darth” is not a first name, but a kind of title? It appears the surname “Ren” is something similar. JJ’s says of Kylo “He is a character who came to the name Kylo Ren when he joined a group called the Knights of Ren.

So, what is this group of Knights? Are they heroes in the vein of King Arthur’s silver soldiers but with a secret mission? Are they simply bad guys lounging around trying to become one with the Force? What did Kylo do to become worth of becoming a Knight of Ren?

If Palpatine and Vader were indeed the last two living Sith Lord, do these knights serve as the new extraordinary league of bad guys that will serve to terrorise the heroes of the new Star Wars trilogy? Does the mysterious Snoke lead or direct these Knights of Ren?

Who is Ren? Is it a he? Is it a she? Is Ren a thing of mystery? A powerful item such as a Kaiburr Crystal? Is Ren a feeling or a mood that’s part of the Force?

What we do know is that Kylo Ren is not a Sith - which possibly implies that Supreme Leader Snoke is not a Sith Lord either.

And a final question – if Kylo Ren is an adopted name, who is Kylo Ren? Is he a Solo? Is he a Skywalker? Our pick is that Kylo Ren is the son of Han Solo, from a relationship he had with a woman who IS NOT Princess Leia.

Time will tell. Actually TFA awakens tells us NOTHING about the Knights of Ren.

Aug 9, 2015

Nuggets of gold that Larry Kasdan has uttered about Star Wars over the years.

Lawrence with Hamill on the Empire set.
Lawrence Kasdan is a big deal in Hollywood.

He is a first class writer, a director with a couple of serious Oscar nominated hits to his resume and his friends such as JJ Abrams call him Larry.

Why do we care about this man?

Let me tell you a personal story. Many years ago, my dad brought home this big shiny box that went under the television. It had a clock on it. The clock's lights were green. Oh, cool, I thought, it's just a big clock.

After dinner, my father got my brothers and I all to sit down in front of the TV to watch the green clock. We knew something was up as we should have been in bed according to the clock. Dad got a black brick and and put it into the clock and suddenly the TV started a wee film called Raiders of the Lost Ark. It turned out to be one of the most amazing experiences of my young life. Indiana Jones was scared of snakes! The evil guy's face melted and he became a ghost!

And Larry wrote that film.

So that was thus my introduction to the work of George Lucas. Star Wars came shortly after by way of a copied VHS. Holy Spaceballs, I had no idea what I had out in the green clock but man, we all no how awesome Star Wars was the first time as a child was right!

So back to Larry. He matters because he is the writer that took George's ideas for Indiana Jones and Star Wars and made them comprehensible and work on the big screen. If we are tallying up the films Lucas and Kasdan have collaborated three films:
  • The Empire Strikes Back
  • Raiders of the Ark
  • Return of the Jedi
If we count The Force Awakens and the as yet untitled Han Solo Anthology films, we can count 5 Star Wars films that Kasdan has written. He's like Lucas's boy wonder to his man who likes to think he's a bat....

What'ts the point of all this exposition? It's to show that thw quotes below that Kasdan has said before are said with authority and that the tales and insights into the films are real, and it's just to let you know a little more about how Star Wars was shaped in general.

We have to talk about Empire

So here's a telling quote about the writing of The Empire Strikes Back and the Leigh Brakett script writing credit:

"Look, there's no question that Leigh Brackett was one of the great screenwriters of all time. But it was an odd job for her, and there's nothing of that draft left in "Empire.""

Woah! Sound's like Leigh's credit is more of a thank you for writing the first draft. One wonders if she had not died shortly after writing it, whether she would have received a credit..... Kasdan explain:

"George had hired Leigh the way anyone would--because, oh my God, she's Leigh Brackett, and because he wanted a Hawksian, goading humor between Han Solo and Princess Leia. But Leigh couldn't serve George the way he wanted to be served. Out of all our respect for her, she was always going to get a credit for the movie."

So, does this mean Kasdan wrote Empire all by himself? No:

"Not to say it's all me. The truth is these movies are all George. I wouldn't say that of "Raiders," but I would say that of the "Star Wars" movies. He has the stories in mind and the difference in each film is how they're executed.
Here's what Kasdan has said about when he came into the piece:
"What I worked on was a draft of the script George had written, based on the story George had given to Leigh [Brackett]. I don’t know what of Leigh’s draft survived into the draft George wrote. What George handed me was a very rough first draft, really somewhere between an outline and a first draft. The structure of the story was all there – it was the skeleton for a movie. What was needed was the flesh and the muscle.” found at Cinefantastique Vol. 28, No.28 (February 1997).

A quick remark about The Phantom Menace

Says Kasdan about Lucas:

" I saw him a couple of weeks before he left to shoot "Phantom Menace" ... and the first remark he made to me was, "Hey, do you want to write 'Phantom Menace'?" I asked, "Aren't you starting to shoot it?" "Yeah," he said, "but it would be great if you took a second pass at it." For George, the movie is bigger than the script...".

Such a telling quote - what Kasdan is saying here is that there is more to the movies than simply a story that George Lucas is focussed on. We know George is hugely vested in the visual aspects of the movie - you could arguably watch A New Hope with all the dialogue removed and you'd understand the film completely! Indeed, if you've never heard of the Star Wars Ring Theory and how George tied all six movies he made together, your mind will probably be blown!

The Kurosawa Connection

The work of legendary Japanese film-maker, Kurosawa had a massive influence on George Lucas and how he developed the Star Wars script (see how C3PO and R2D2 where inspired as a story telling vehicle) but it's nice to see Kasdan and Lucas having a connection in common:

"The movies that made me want to make movies were action movies, and thrillers, and Kurosawa films, you know, where you have an opportunity every day to shoot it in an unusual way. I was looking for something like that."

A reluctance to write Return of the Jedi

Scripting The Empire Strikes Back and Raiders of the Lost Ark for Speilberg and Lucas opened some big Hollywood doors up for Kasdan. It gave him the chance to do some other things. So he perhaps wasn't ready to get back into Star Wars again so hurriedly to do what was at the time known as Revenge of the Jedi. He's said:

"I mean, I really liked those guys and the experience of doing Raiders was really good for me, but I did not really want to be involved - I only did Jedi, as I really owed George a favor."

He did a fine job, most would agree.

The Force Awakens

Vanity Fair had a chance to ask Kasdan some questions:

What was it like coming back to Luke, Leia, and Han and writing those characters again, picking up their threads after 30 years?

"That’s just fun because they’re around my age. Carrie is a little younger, Mark is my age, and Harrison is a little older. So since we’ve treated it as 30 years passing in the film, there’s no artificiality about that. You get to infuse them to the extent that you can with your experience of 30 years on."

Less is more?

“It’s a big movie. It’s full of wonderful stuff, incident and character stuff and jokes and effects. One of the things that we always refocus on from the get-go was that it not be one of these very long, bloated blockbusters. A lot of very entertaining movies lately are too long. In the last 20 minutes, you think, why isn’t this over? 

We didn’t want to make a movie like that. I mean, we were really aiming to have it be—when it’s over you’ll say, “I wish there’s more.” Or, “Wait, is it over?” Because how rarely you get that feeling nowadays, and I think we’re headed there. But it means that there will be constant critical looking at it from now to the end, saying, “Do we need this? Do we need that? Is it better if this comes out, even though we love it?”

Kasdan also said to Entertainment Weekly

“I thought, ‘Wow, okay, these people have lived — they’re in a different place in their lives, Han and Leia and so on. They’ve lived the same 30 years I have. What would that be like? How would you see things differently?’

 “And I was trying to figure out how I saw things differently, and one of the surprises is that you don’t learn all that much. You haven’t become much wiser than you were, and things are not clearer to you, and the world is just as confusing as it always was — and that’s a kind of lovely thing to get to write about again. Age does not necessarily bring wisdom; it just brings experience.”

So, basically he's saying he had to find a reason to keep the Luke and Leia relevant against the back drop of new heroes, Finn, Rey and Poe Dameron.