No, Thomas; I am your father.
November 5, 2013 12:57 PM   Subscribe

Adding to the widely reported speculation that Chiwetel Ejiofor is joining the cast, the BBC is reporting that open auditions for two of the lead roles in the next Star Wars film are being held across Britain and Ireland in the next few weeks. Shooting is still slated to start in January. The audition call tweet gives details of the roles...

"Seeking young woman to play 17-18 year old. Must be beautiful, smart and athletic. Open to all ethnicities (including Bi and Multi Racial). Must be over 16.

Rachel - was quite young when she lost her parents. With no other family, she was forced to make her way in a tough, dangerous town. Now 17 she has become street smart and strong. She is able to take care of herself using humor and guts to get by.

Always a survivor, never a victim, she remains hopeful that she can move away from this harsh existence to a better life. She is always thinking of what she can do to move ahead.

+ + + + +

Seeing young man to play 19-23 years old. Must be handsome, smart and athletic. Must be over 18.

Thomas - has grown up without a father's influence. Without the model of being a man, he doesn't have the strongest sense of himself. Despite this he is smart, capable and shows courage when it is needed. He can appreciate the absurdities in life and understands you can't take life too seriously."
posted by Wordshore (114 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
So who shoots first?
posted by The World Famous at 1:01 PM on November 5, 2013


The DP usually.
posted by The Whelk at 1:03 PM on November 5, 2013 [36 favorites]


Rachel - was quite young when she lost her parents. With no other family, she was forced to make her way in a tough, dangerous town. Now 17 she has become street smart and strong. She is able to take care of herself using humor and guts to get by.

Always a survivor, never a victim, she remains hopeful that she can move away from this harsh existence to a better life. She is always thinking of what she can do to move ahead.


Hoping some folks with experience in Hollywood screenwriting/casting/etc can share some knowledge: is this how characters are actually written about/sketched/described in the working documents?
posted by notyou at 1:04 PM on November 5, 2013


notyou: "is this how characters are actually written about/sketched/described in the working documents?"

This sounds like fairly standard short character descriptions, though very clichéd.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 1:08 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


With no other family, she was forced to make her way in a tough, dangerous town.

Come on, Dagobah wasn't that bad.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:11 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


Seeking young woman to play 17-18 year old. Must be beautiful, smart and athletic

If they're auditioning in Ireland I could totally go up for that!!! As long as they were flexible about the beautiful and athletic part. And also the smart thing. Oh and being able to pass for 17-18. damn
posted by billiebee at 1:13 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


Come on, Dagobah wasn't that bad.

When I first came here, this was all swamp. Everyone said I was daft to build a Jedi hovel in a swamp, but I built it all the same, just to show them. It sank into the swamp. So I built a second one. That sank into the swamp. So I built a third. That burned down, fell over, then sank into the swamp. But the fourth one stayed up. And that's what you're going to get, lass: the strongest Jedi hovel in all the Galaxy!
posted by Celsius1414 at 1:15 PM on November 5, 2013 [33 favorites]


Gosh, I hope we boldly journey back to Tatooine for the sixth time! (Hey! Hey, remember this place? This place was in that other movie! Remember that? *nudgenudge* Remember? You liked that movie! Remember? Eh?)
posted by entropicamericana at 1:15 PM on November 5, 2013 [14 favorites]


Seeking young man to play the role of: Unemployed Snowman. Must have large hair.
posted by blue_beetle at 1:15 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Who would have thought Luke Skywalker would have grown up to look like a middle aged Northern English bloke, or Mefi's own Luke Skywalker as you may now call me.
posted by biffa at 1:22 PM on November 5, 2013 [4 favorites]


I was momentarily upset to learn that a phenomenal actor such as Chiwetel Ejiofor was going to appear in such a predictably terrible movie but appearing in the prequels didn't seem to hurt the careers of otherwise solid actors Liam Neeson, Natalie Portman, Sam Jackson, or Ewan McGreggor.
posted by willie11 at 1:24 PM on November 5, 2013


Dunno about casting, but if they're looking for hero character names to live up to the Luke Skywalker / Han Solo standard, I suggest they look no further than MST3K's list for the hero of Space Mutiny.
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:25 PM on November 5, 2013 [7 favorites]


Seeking young woman to play 17-18 year old. Must be beautiful, smart and athletic. Open to all ethnicities (including Bi and Multi Racial). Must be over 16.

Rachel - was quite young when ha ha no we're kidding, we could point the camera at a coffeemaker for two and a half hours and a tidal wave of idiots would still pay to see it, complain about it, then pay to see the sequel, so really you just need to be pleasing to look at and hit your marks and display at least a dim comprehension of the concept of an eyeline
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 1:29 PM on November 5, 2013 [6 favorites]


Always a survivor, never a victim, she remains hopeful that she can move away from this harsh existence to a better life. She is always thinking of what she can do to move ahead.

Our society is so fucked up about orphan narratives.

Without the model of being a man, he doesn't have the strongest sense of himself . . . He can appreciate the absurdities in life and understands you can't take life too seriously.

I can't even.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 1:35 PM on November 5, 2013 [8 favorites]


I was momentarily upset to learn that a phenomenal actor such as Chiwetel Ejiofor was going to appear in such a predictably terrible movie

Yeah, I don't plan to see it unless the reviews are -- contrary to any reasonable expectation at this point -- phenomenal, so he can pick up the fat paycheck if he likes and more power to him. He's "The Operative" from Serenity. Nothing can ever take that from me.
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:35 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


I dunno, they got an actual writer this time. Though he may have some interesting dramatic theories:
Arndt stated that if a writer could resolve the story's arcs (internal, external, philosophical) immediately after the Moment of Despair at the climax, he or she would deliver the Insanely Great Ending and put the audience in a euphoric state. The faster it could happen, the better. By [Arndt’s] reckoning, George Lucas hit those three marks at the climax of Star Wars within a space of 22 seconds.
So I guess don't go to the bathroom too close to the ending of this one.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 1:36 PM on November 5, 2013 [4 favorites]


12 Years a Jedi.
posted by Rangeboy at 1:39 PM on November 5, 2013 [4 favorites]


Why are people expecting it to be bad? I am anticipating the last Star Trek level of quality at worst, and that was... fine, if not very memorable.

George Lucas has left the building, people.
posted by Sebmojo at 1:41 PM on November 5, 2013 [11 favorites]


In my dream world, the last three would be made by guest auteurs.

Ep VII: The Coen Brothers
Ep VIII: Terry Gilliam
Ep IX: Wes Anderson
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:45 PM on November 5, 2013 [13 favorites]


I find your lack of faith disturbing, I am altering the deal. Pray I don't alter it any further. etc.
posted by Apocryphon at 1:47 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


Ep IX: Wes Anderson

This might be of interest to you, then.
posted by Rangeboy at 1:48 PM on November 5, 2013 [4 favorites]


I like your list, Spiggott. But I would sub Tommy Wiseau every time for this series.
posted by munchingzombie at 1:49 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


(Make that last one Jim Jarmusch. Wes Anderson as a suggestion has the requisite funny but I'm not particularly into his films.)
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:49 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


must enjoy working with green boxes, spheres
posted by nathancaswell at 1:51 PM on November 5, 2013 [5 favorites]


Why do they have to include "smart" in the casting call? Can't you just, you know, act? If the character was dumb would they put "must be dumb" in the call?
posted by Justinian at 1:51 PM on November 5, 2013


Why are people expecting it to be bad? I am anticipating the last Star Trek level of quality at worst, and that was... fine, if not very memorable.

If you expect the worst, you are rarely disappointed and occasionally surprised.
posted by entropicamericana at 1:55 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


Why do they have to include "smart" in the casting call?

Believe me, they need to put "smart" in the casting call.
posted by incessant at 1:58 PM on November 5, 2013 [11 favorites]


Why do they have to include "smart" in the casting call? Can't you just, you know, act? If the character was dumb would they put "must be dumb" in the call?

"Smart" is different than "not-dumb."

Also, it's obnoxious as all get-out when people try to play smarter than they are. See, Newt Gingrich.

Also, it would be much easier for a smart person to play dumb, than the other way around.
posted by Sticherbeast at 1:59 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Believe me, they need to put "smart" in the casting call.

How does that work, though? "Oh look! They're casting for Star Wars... oh. 'Smart.' Damn."
posted by George_Spiggott at 2:00 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


As for J. J. Abrams' Star Wars, I sort of feel like Star Wars is better suited to his skill set than Star Trek. LET ME BASK IN YOUR FLAMES
posted by Sticherbeast at 2:01 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


Why do they have to include "smart" in the casting call? Can't you just, you know, act?

First rule of applying for any job: Pay attention to exactly what the ad says.

I'm guessing "smart" means being a professional and anticipating what's coming next and preparing for it. Between takes are you seating on your ass texting or are you warming up for the next scene without having being told to do so? Do you know when to be quiet and do exactly what the director says and when to offer a suggestion or two?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:01 PM on November 5, 2013


Why are people expecting it to be bad? I am anticipating the last Star Trek level of quality at worst, and that was... fine, if not very memorable.

Taste is subjective and all, but the last Star Trek movie was, from where I sit, kind of a shitty mess and I don't think I'd want to see a movie at that level of quality.

People are expecting it to be bad because it's a sequel to three or four bad movies, depending on who you ask, and it has no reason to exist besides money and merchandising.

Now, to be honest, I have no idea if it's going to be any good or not, but at this point, that's immaterial to me. The last three movies were so awful and boring that they successfully killed any interest I had in Star Wars. I just don't give a shit anymore. I wasn't interested in the third prequel, but everyone I knew insisted, "What? But you gotta go see it," and they said it was good, and I was dumb enough to listen, and I went, and it fucking sucked.

So this time, I ain't listening. I'm done with seeing movies out of some insane sense of nerd obligation. Fandom is comprised of people who knew the Last Airbender movie was going to suck well in advance, but still went to see it at midnight because they couldn't conceive of not doing so; of people who saw the first Michael Bay Transformers movie, hated it, and paid to see the next one, and the one after that. It's crazy, and I'm done with it. Fuck Star Wars.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 2:01 PM on November 5, 2013 [11 favorites]


How does that work, though? "Oh look! They're casting for Star Wars... oh. 'Smart.' Damn."

I would interpret "smart" as meaning, "able to effortlessly appear intelligent, as a result of your actually having those qualities which people would describe as intelligent." This character is not an Average Jane or a meathead or a naif or whatever. She's actively smart. She uses her brain.
posted by Sticherbeast at 2:04 PM on November 5, 2013


This sounds like fairly standard short character descriptions, though very clichéd.

Given the enormous amount of speculation these descriptions are creating, and Star Wars' long history of being secretive and hiding behind fake titles, I really doubt these character descriptions have anything to do with the actual characters these actors will be playing.
posted by RonButNotStupid at 2:04 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


Are there even any really quotable lines from the prequels? Besides Yoda's dialogue, I suppose.
posted by Apocryphon at 2:04 PM on November 5, 2013


Can't you just, you know, act?

Isn't that the point? When an adjective X appears in a casting call, it means that they're looking for someone who can play X. There are plenty of actors who are good at playing "smart," which is an attribute separate from their actual intelligence. Actors' resumes list things like "smoking" too; it doesn't mean that they have a pack-a-day habit in real life.
posted by RogerB at 2:07 PM on November 5, 2013


Some late-breaking news on the script for Episode VII!

There will be a character called Mork-Mork, who hails from the embattled planet of Smoopfrorp. He speaks in a combination of thick Cockney dialect and Pig Latin. He'll be three feet tall, be covered with orange fur, and have googly eyes. He has the mysterious Force power of having a disembodied laugh track follow him around everywhere he goes, regardless of situation. A Little Golden Book featuring his finding his lost hat will be available within three days of the movie's release. He's best friends with a reconstituted Boba Fett.
posted by JHarris at 2:08 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


Are there even any really quotable lines from the prequels? Besides Yoda's dialogue, I suppose.

NNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!
posted by Sticherbeast at 2:08 PM on November 5, 2013 [16 favorites]


So... 17 years old (or able to pass for 17). Beautiful, athletic, can seem smart.

Um. Saoirse Ronan maybe?
posted by Justinian at 2:10 PM on November 5, 2013 [4 favorites]


Are there even any really quotable lines from the prequels? Besides Yoda's dialogue, I suppose.

Does 'do not want' count?
posted by RonButNotStupid at 2:10 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


Instead of Carbonite, they imprison you in Garbonite, which just makes you want to be alone.
posted by George_Spiggott at 2:10 PM on November 5, 2013 [10 favorites]


Ep VII is called Enter the Wookie. It is a pornographic film about wookies.
posted by Mister_A at 2:10 PM on November 5, 2013 [4 favorites]


Perhaps they're seeking an actress who simply won't embarrass them in public.
posted by Soliloquy at 2:11 PM on November 5, 2013


I am sorry for that last update, my MeFi handle was hijacked by a bespectacled ne'er-do-well.

As for Episode VII–it is actually called Jawarotica and it's a pornographic film about Jawas.
posted by Mister_A at 2:13 PM on November 5, 2013 [5 favorites]


Always a survivor, never a victim, she remains hopeful that she can move away from this harsh existence to a better life. She is always thinking of what she can do to move ahead.

Our society is so fucked up about orphan narratives.

Without the model of being a man, he doesn't have the strongest sense of himself . . . He can appreciate the absurdities in life and understands you can't take life too seriously.

I can't even.


and the thing is, while each character separately is a terrible fucked up cliche, the combination manages to fuck up all of the recognizable straight-woman/douche-bag cliche pairings you can think of.
posted by ennui.bz at 2:13 PM on November 5, 2013


If they don't want to be embarrassed in public they should stop writing shit.
posted by Justinian at 2:13 PM on November 5, 2013


Does 'do not want' count?

BROCCOLI DOG SAYS YES
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 2:15 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


Again I must apologize. A man in a track suit put in the naughty part of that comment when I got up to go potty.

Episode VII is actually called Sand People In Your Vagina.
posted by Mister_A at 2:16 PM on November 5, 2013 [15 favorites]




I like his Episode VII Bingo. Be sure to reload the page for more rich suffering.
posted by JHarris at 2:21 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


Episode VII is called Star Wars, Attack of the Subprime Mortgage.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 2:21 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


I would have loved it if the new leads were a Nick and Nora type couple, quipping and drinking their way through a galaxy-wide epic.

Or, if the leads were like Griffin Dunne in After Hours. Just trying to get fucking home, except this CRAP keeps on HAPPENING and UGH. (Although, I guess that's sort of what The Odyssey is like. Which is fine, too.)

Or, if the new trilogy had a master plot that was equal parts The Great Escape, The Flight of the Phoenix, The Count of Monte Cristo, John Le Carré, and A New Hope. Imprisonment, scheming, intrigue, hatching a plan, revenge, and then blatant kick-assery.
posted by Sticherbeast at 2:23 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Space Mutiny

Smoke ManMuscle
posted by Slackermagee at 2:24 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Arndt stated that if a writer could resolve the story's arcs (internal, external, philosophical) immediately after the Moment of Despair at the climax, he or she would deliver the Insanely Great Ending and put the audience in a euphoric state. The faster it could happen, the better. By [Arndt’s] reckoning, George Lucas hit those three marks at the climax of Star Wars within a space of 22 seconds.

Arndt is out. Kasdan is writing it with Abrams.

Taste is subjective and all, but the last Star Trek movie was, from where I sit, kind of a shitty mess and I don't think I'd want to see a movie at that level of quality.

Right. But the prequels were shitty on a galactically different level, is what I am saying.

People are expecting it to be bad because it's a sequel to three or four bad movies, depending on who you ask, and it has no reason to exist besides money and merchandising.

Neither of those are particularly determinative. Hell, Toy Story 2 was supposed to be straight to DVD. The recent Tinker Bell CGI DVDs are well-written, tightly plotted, character driven stories that are a pleasure to watch when they had no earthly reason to be.

Now, to be honest, I have no idea if it's going to be any good or not, but at this point, that's immaterial to me. The last three movies were so awful and boring that they successfully killed any interest I had in Star Wars. I just don't give a shit anymore. I wasn't interested in the third prequel, but everyone I knew insisted, "What? But you gotta go see it," and they said it was good, and I was dumb enough to listen, and I went, and it fucking sucked.

This, I'm completely with you though. If it's shit I don't imagine I'll see it. I just think there's better than even odds it won't be: Disney are developing a good track record with this sort of stuff.
posted by Sebmojo at 2:26 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


It sounds like they're looking for Hunger Games protagonists. "Seeking genetically modified super-adolescent who can make meaningful facial expressions and deliver lines with more emotion than a speech synthesizer." When we're past uncanny valley in ten years, these millennial stars will be remembered as the industry's first foray in automaton technology.
posted by Taft at 2:28 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


while each character separately is a terrible fucked up cliche, the combination manages to fuck up all of the recognizable straight-woman/douche-bag cliche pairings you can think of

Really? It reads to me like they're going all-in on Headstrong Tough Dame Saves Lovable Ne'er-Do-Well From Himself, which is pretty textbook screenwriting cliche if not just a straight-up reprisal of Leia and Han.
posted by RogerB at 2:33 PM on November 5, 2013


It sounds like they're looking for Hunger Games protagonists. "Seeking genetically modified super-adolescent who can make meaningful facial expressions and deliver lines with more emotion than a speech synthesizer." When we're past uncanny valley in ten years, these millennial stars will be remembered as the industry's first foray in automaton technology.

Yeah, I dunno about this specific example. Whatever the other flaws of Hunger Games, it actually has a terrific lead, who doesn't act anything like a robot.

Even looking at Abams property, he can have a pretty decent eye for casting. Anna Torv and John Noble were great in Fringe.
posted by Sticherbeast at 2:33 PM on November 5, 2013


Instead of prestige casting, why not cast the most awesomely suited to a SW film that would actually be good. Not Cumberbatch or Ejiofor, but -- since we're talking about Abrams -- say, Naveen Andrews.
posted by George_Spiggott at 2:38 PM on November 5, 2013


This time.... THIS TIME... I won't pay to see it.
I'll pay.
posted by goatdog at 2:40 PM on November 5, 2013


We all will, goatdog. God help us, we all will.
posted by Justinian at 2:44 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


Who would have thought Luke Skywalker would have grown up to look like a middle aged Northern English bloke

Anyone who has seen Mark Hamill lately?
posted by Sys Rq at 2:52 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


I guess that explains my unexpected call to fame.
posted by biffa at 3:04 PM on November 5, 2013


A long time ago, but not quite so long ago as Episode IV,
in a galaxy far, far away...

It is a period of political unrest.
Exiled Sympathizers of the Old Lucasfilm Empire,
striking from a hidden
base, have won their first victory
against the New Federated Republic of Disney.

During the battle, Sympathizer spies managed
to steal secret plans to the Republic's
ultimate weapon, the Sequel Trilogy, a nerd herder
with enough power to bring down an entire global economy.

Pursued by Disney's sinister smoke agents,
Princess Plethora races home aboard her
starship, custodian of the stolen plans
that can save her people and restore
economic viability to 20th Century Fox...
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:05 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


If it's shit I don't imagine I'll see it. I just think there's better than even odds it won't be: Disney are developing a good track record with this sort of stuff.

What did you have in mind? I've looked through Disney's big budget action films and I'm not seeing anything worth seeing.
posted by biffa at 3:05 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


He's best friends with a reconstituted Boba Fett.

I will accept nothing less than Franken-Jango-Fett.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 3:10 PM on November 5, 2013


I believe you meant alt.franken.jango.fet.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:12 PM on November 5, 2013


I first read that as al.franken.jango.fett, which brought up visions of a strange episode of SNL.
posted by JHarris at 3:27 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Welcome to the Al Franken Décolletage.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:28 PM on November 5, 2013


What did you have in mind? I've looked through Disney's big budget action films and I'm not seeing anything worth seeing.

(consults wiki list of Disney films)... yeah, ok. Maybe that was overstating it, nearly all the good ones are Pixar. I guess I'm just saying I think it's most likely to be average (plus, Star Wars!) rather than terrible (plus, Star Wars!) like the prequels.

Tinker Bell is still ace, though, I'll defend that opinion to the grave.
posted by Sebmojo at 3:38 PM on November 5, 2013


Arndt is out. Kasdan is writing it with Abrams.

On the plus side, Kasdan wrote Empire, Raiders and Jedi and directed a bunch of really good movies like Body Head and Silverado. On the other hand, Dreamcatcher.
posted by octothorpe at 3:38 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Dude, doesn't Disney own Marvel? As long as we're talking about enjoyable big-budget action films.
posted by dogheart at 3:40 PM on November 5, 2013


It would be great if the new Star Wars was like The Big Chill, in space.
posted by Sticherbeast at 3:41 PM on November 5, 2013


All that great space doo-wop.
posted by The Whelk at 3:43 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Aren't open castings just marketing gimmicks?
posted by fullerine at 3:56 PM on November 5, 2013


Silverado in space, sure. The Big Chill in Space would basically be the bar scene in Episode IV for 2 hours, if neither Han nor Greedo ever drew at all.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:58 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


Han and Greedo would get stoned and bitch about how alienating their jobs are.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:59 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


the bar scene in Episode IV for 2 hours, if neither Han nor Greedo ever drew at all

You say that like it's a bad thing, but I'd take My Dinner with Greedo happily over the Lucas prequels.
posted by RogerB at 4:00 PM on November 5, 2013 [4 favorites]


Seriously, Sticherbeast. Luke, Leia, Han, Chewie, 3PO, R2 spend a weekend with Lando at his place exploring how they're finding meaning long after the significant and dramatic events of their lives. You should mail that idea to Funny Or Die, at least.
posted by George_Spiggott at 4:02 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


> "Seeking genetically modified super-adolescent who can make meaningful facial expressions and deliver lines with more emotion than a speech synthesizer."

(quietly submits headshot)
posted by kyrademon at 4:09 PM on November 5, 2013


I'd take My Dinner with Greedo happily over the Lucas prequels

Well, sure, but that's hardly a fair fight. I'd rather see 2 hours of Brody, Quint, and Hooper drunkenly bullshitting in the cabin of Quint's boat than most other movies, so I'm not using that as a point of comparison, either. As a point of comparison, I'd rather see political commercials than the Lucas prequels.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:09 PM on November 5, 2013


How about Breakfast Club? Luke, Han, Leia, and Chewie have to sit through a boring two-day force training seminar. They eventually skip out with C3PO and R2D2, the wise-ass janitors.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 4:14 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


that's hardly a fair fight. I'd rather see 2 hours of Brody, Quint, and Hooper drunkenly bullshitting in the cabin of Quint's boat than most other movies

Fair enough, yeah. Weird thing about Hollywood, though, that it manages to squander so much natural charm that just watching the actors do improv-chat would, so often, be far more entertaining than what they do in the film (the "acting" in the Star Wars prequels being a pretty great example). Maybe at some point the outtakes and gag reels are going to start pulling bigger audiences than the movies they're attached to — they're already left off the Netflix rental discs from the more recent Apatow-crowd movies, for instance, conceivably because they realized that that's what we really rented them for.
posted by RogerB at 4:16 PM on November 5, 2013


GlenYoda GlenHoth
posted by Renoroc at 4:51 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


really good movies like Body Head

In a just world, this would exist and would be a vaguely Lovecraftian David Cronenberg movie with, of course, Jeffrey Combs.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 4:53 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


really good movies like Body Head

Heh, SwiftKey strikes again.
posted by octothorpe at 5:02 PM on November 5, 2013


Starring William Hurd and Kathleen Durner.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 5:05 PM on November 5, 2013 [1 favorite]


For a while there I was sort of excited about the idea of new Star Wars films, if only because Lucas wouldn't be involved anymore. Then I discovered the supposedly "standalone" spinoffs -- something that seemed promising to me -- were going to be origin stories, and fuck that noise. I don't care where Yoda came from. That's not an interesting thing.

Although apparently the new films are returning to the "grittiness" (?!) of the original movie, and gritty reboots always turn out so well.
posted by brundlefly at 5:17 PM on November 5, 2013


Desert planets are very gritty places.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 5:23 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


really good movies like Body Head

In a just world, this would exist and would be a vaguely Lovecraftian David Cronenberg movie with, of course, Jeffrey Combs.


Body Head
Directed by Werner Herzog
Starring Nicolas Cage as David Lynch
posted by The World Famous at 5:29 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


Desert planets are very gritty places.

Not like you, Padme.
posted by Sticherbeast at 5:32 PM on November 5, 2013 [11 favorites]


...he said, dryly.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 5:33 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


He's "The Operative" from Serenity. Nothing can ever take that from me.

Speaking as a major Firefly fan, Serenity was the sweet Hollywood gig Ejiofor earned for his performance in Dirty Pretty Things (which also stars Audrey Tautou if you really need convincing to watch it).
posted by A dead Quaker at 5:56 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


Although apparently the new films are returning to the "grittiness" (?!) of the original movie, and gritty reboots always turn out so well.

I disagree. The grittiness of the first three films is what makes the universe work so well. Dusting off my favorite take on the aesthetic of the original trilogy:
As soon as we see Tatooine in the first Star Wars film, we're supposed to realize a few things about the Star Wars universe. It's an empty, underdeveloped, broken-down place. Empty deserts, small dusty villages, and a lack of effective governance. Remember the Jawas and their Sandcrawler, scavenging and patching up outdated droids, because new ones were unaffordable, or simply not available any longer? Really, the place was just steps away from Mad Max.

Throughout the first (real) Star Wars films, we get a strong sense that most of the Empire is like this--broken-down, abandoned, semi-functional, with available resources directed towards an Imperial regime given to grandiose gestures of intimidation--as autocratic regimes in fact often are. Those AT-AT Walkers and Death Stars might be ineffective, but they're no more unlikely than the Spanish Galleons of 1588, or the American Aircraft Carriers of 2009--and they make the same suggestion about the Galactic Empire that those Spanish and American warships made about the declining earthly empires that produced them. Intimidating spectacle masks a deeper vulnerability.
Abrams will have to decide what direction to take the sequels, but it wouldn't be at all out of line for the action to happen in places that had been stripped bare by looting during the fall of the Imperial Empire. It'd be a hell of a lot more compelling setting than shining-CGI-Coruscant.
posted by Mayor West at 5:58 PM on November 5, 2013 [9 favorites]


I'm really hoping for some epic laser battles with not too much goofiness. I enjoyed the big battle scene toward the end of Episode 2, and the incredibly large space battle at the beginning of Ep. 3, which continued into a pretty decent part inside the ship and the confrontation with Dooku. It was reminiscent of A New Hope when they're in the Death Star, but maybe slightly too silly.

I'd really love to see some gritty action scenes like the CGI videos that were released for The Old Republic. The two Jedi vs. the Sith lord and his apprentice was a really cool action sequence that could have been made better if expanded upon, and if it had with held the cliche space cowboy character.
posted by gucci mane at 6:09 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


God, you know what? I don't want to hear any more about casting notes and casting rumours and casting coups and screenwriters in and screenwriters out and whether JJ Abrams took a Tatooine-sized shit this morning. I don't want to hear anything else about the film until it's finished or at least until there's a freakin' trailer.

Judging a film on casting breakdowns is ridiculous. They are written generically so that agents send people along a type that might be close. We don't know anything about those characters yet. We won't know anything about them until we see the film or pre-publicity tells us who they are supposed to be.

Pouring over all this minutiae really isn't helping anyone - filmmakers or filmgoers. I just want it to be 2015 with the opening crawl rolling before my eyeballs.

Come on, JJ! Speed up time!
posted by crossoverman at 6:37 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


No, no, no this is all wrong

Raise Tarkovsky from the dead and let him have a crack at it

Clearly that is the only viable solution
posted by Doleful Creature at 8:02 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


Come on, JJ! Speed up time!

Are you crazy? The lens flares alone would destroy you.
posted by The World Famous at 8:06 PM on November 5, 2013 [3 favorites]


Holy clichés!
posted by George Lucas at 8:24 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


The grittiness of the first three films is what makes the universe work so well.

It is, though that also means that criticism of the shininess of the prequels is one of the few criticisms that doesn't work. The last days of the Republic were the good times that eps 4-6 look back on, the height that the Empire fell from.

At the same time, this is one of the more colossal fuckups in the Great Reimagining of the "Pray I don't alter them further" version of ROTJ -- when they show that short clip of a celebrating Coruscant in with the celebrations on the other worlds, it really needed to be a Coruscant that was falling apart and semi-abandoned.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:51 PM on November 5, 2013 [2 favorites]


This is the Old Republic CGI trailer I was speaking of. There are two others which are decent: here and here.

The acrobatics are cool, if a little over-the-top, and I can see why people may not enjoy them. If they toned them down a bit I think it'd work out a lot better. I'd really like to see some more Mos Eisley sort of stuff. That's grittiness that I enjoy. If they could put some things on Coruscant that'd be even better.
posted by gucci mane at 12:03 AM on November 6, 2013 [1 favorite]


Rachel? Thomas? Is this set in the Outer Rim or the Lower East Side?

"Luke...I am your Tate."
"Tatooine?"
"...Oy, mishpakhe."
posted by obiwanwasabi at 1:07 AM on November 6, 2013


I really hope they don't use the names Rachel and Thomas. Really really really hope...
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 2:01 AM on November 6, 2013


Clearly they are casting Jaina and Jacen Solo, but if they used those names - spoilers!
posted by crossoverman at 2:41 AM on November 6, 2013 [3 favorites]


Rachel? Thomas? Is this set in the Outer Rim or the Lower East Side?

"Luke...I am your Tate."
"Tatooine?"
"...Oy, mishpakhe."


Why can't they use proper space names like Ben or Leah Leia?
posted by Gordafarin at 3:04 AM on November 6, 2013 [1 favorite]


Or Luke?
posted by entropicamericana at 4:45 AM on November 6, 2013


I've made a similar comment elsewhere, but my main fear about Star Wars is the writing being as bad as the 2009 Star Trek. The plot of that film was goddamn risble. The characters worked very well, and were enough to power that film through to enjoyable, but damn is the plot of that film a complete mess. It requires an absurd number of coincidences and suspension of disbelief for the plot to work, and includes action scenes which do absolutely nothing to further the plot or our understanding of the characters (the monster chase scene, which is essentially the same as Phantom Menace's and the stupid water tube things Scotty gets stuck in...).

As I've said before, Star Wars is a very well plotted film where all the actions everyone make makes sense, and what happens to them makes sense as well (with the small exception of not blowing up the escape pod....)
posted by Cannon Fodder at 4:49 AM on November 6, 2013


I'd love to see them remake the prequels.

Seriously guys that's not how it went down. THIS is how it went down.

Please please please make this happen.
posted by St. Peepsburg at 8:54 AM on November 6, 2013


I just want to know who Abrams is going to cast as Mr. Plinkett.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 9:54 AM on November 6, 2013 [2 favorites]


More from the BBC today:

The actor who played Darth Vader in the original Star Wars films says hopefuls from Bristol auditioning for the new film should disguise their accents ...

Dave Prowse starred in episodes four to six but his Bristolian accent was later dubbed over by James Earl Jones. He told people going to Bristol for the open casting sessions for Star Wars: Episode VII to be "very, very serious about the whole thing".

"You can't go 'oo-aar my dear here's my lightsaber'," he said.
posted by Wordshore at 10:15 AM on November 6, 2013


'oo-aar my dear here's my lightsaber'

I kind of want to see this version of Star Wars.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 10:24 AM on November 6, 2013 [8 favorites]


Raise Tarkovsky from the dead and let him have a crack at it

I would watch this, but I'd prefer zombie Stanley Kubrick. The film would still be artistic, but more accessible.
posted by Thoughtcrime at 10:37 AM on November 6, 2013


I haven't read the expanded universe stuff, but if we're doing kids of the original trilogy characters, I'll take Ejiofor as Lando Jr.
posted by immlass at 10:47 AM on November 6, 2013


Why can't they use proper space names like Ben or Leah Leia?
Or Luke?

Or Bubala Fett? He wears the helmet so you can't squeeze his cheeks.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 2:25 AM on November 7, 2013


Opens on December 18th 2015, if anyone here is still thinking of seeing it by then.
posted by Wordshore at 2:22 PM on November 7, 2013


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