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Star Wars Celebration: Rian Johnson Talks ‘Star Wars: Episode VIII’
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The Future Filmmakers panel at Star Wars Celebration in London this weekend not only included an appearance from directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller, who talked about the yet-to-be-titled Han Solo standalone film, but also Rian Johnson, who discussed the upcoming Star Wars: Episode VIII.

The latest Star Wars saga film, which has yet to receive an official title, recently wrapped shooting and will probably have some reshoots done in time for the release next year. But as Johnson gets ready to enter post-production, the director spoke a little bit about what we can expect to see from Episode VIII, including where and when it takes place, the tone, and much more. Check out here below what he and Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy had to say.

Credit for the news to /Film and Collider, who were in attendance for one of the final panels of the last day of Star Wars Celebration.

As to why Johnson was chosen to direct, Kennedy said they were impressed with his directorial efforts and mentioned films like Brothers Bloom and Looper. She went on to give him some really high praise, telling audiences “I don’t say this about many people — I think Rian moves the camera as well as Steven Spielberg.” To put the two even in the same sentence, that alone should raise expectations. While that tells us a lot about the director, we still know very little about the film itself. As aforementioned, Episode VIII completed shooting just a few short weeks ago, so they weren’t at liberty to tell us too much. However, here’s what they did say. Episode VIII will start where we left off in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, something that was hinted at in the video that was released earlier this year when Johnson commenced production of the film. It should be interesting to see what was behind that decision. In previous Star Wars saga films, some time has passed between each installment. But with confirmation that it starts right were The Force Awakens left off, we get a sense that there will be no breaks for Rey, who had just found Luke.

Johnson actually spent six weeks in San Franciso, where Lucasfilm HQs is located, helping develop the film’s script. Episode VIII will also start “zooming in on the characters, challenging them, getting deeper.” While it does seem vague, this goes back to the idea that Rey doesn’t have any time to just take a breather as she will develop her skills to become a Jedi. To get a sense of the tone, Johnson told audiences which films helped influence Episode VIII, and they are: Twelve O’Clock High, Letter Never Sent, Bridge on the River Kwai, Three Outlaw Samurai, Gunga Din, and Sahara.

The Force Awakens star John Boyega also stopped by the panel to tell SWCE attendees that Finn will not be in a coma for the entirety of the film. When he wakes up and what kind of role he will have post-coma is still not clear.

Star Wars Rebels executive producer and creator Dave Filoni also helped out by providing some input.

The Force Awakens had no shortage of cameos, and it appears that Episode VIII will be the same. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story director Gareth Edwards will appear as a fighter for the Resistance. Of course, they are keeping other cameos a secret for now.

Star Wars: Episode VIII opens in theaters on December 15, 2017.

[Source: /Film | Collider]

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