First off, you all saw this last week, right? J.J. Abrams rapping “Jabba Flow” was certainly the highlight of Star Wars Day, despite the release of another video that we’ll get to soon enough. Secondly, if you’re looking for a rundown of Episode VIII leaks, then theseare the droids (and vehicles, and set pics, and random other pieces of information) that you’re looking for. Thirdly, welcome back to perhaps the only place on the Internet that mixes British monarchy, Danish actors, and plastic toys alike. Want to know what’s going on in a galaxy far, far away? We’re glad you asked.
You Find Force Awakens Clues in the Strangest Places…
Source: The promotional campaign for the latest Lego Star Wars game
Probability of Accuracy: The new trailer makes it clear what’s going on: This is 100 percent legit.
The Real Deal: Are you wondering why C-3PO had a red arm in Star Wars: The Force Awakens? Or are you curious what the deal was with Max Von Sydow’s character? Still unsure why Han and Chewie had those Rathtars on their ship in the first place? Well, it turns out, there’s a surprising place to turn to get answers to those questions.
Yes, the Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens game will have six all-new adventures featuring plots that weren’t in the movie itself, and give more attention to characters who didn’t get much screen time. Also, yes, that’s really Harrison Ford, Oscar Isaac, and everyone else voicing their characters in the game. What is this insane, wonderful world in which we live?
Yes, Huttslayer Is Now Canon
Source: The newly published Star Wars: Bloodlines novel
Probability of Accuracy: Just as true as the fact that Jabba is no more. (Sorry, Hutt truthers.)
The Real Deal: Even more important Force Awakens backstory is revealed in the newly released Star Wars: Bloodlines prose novel, which establishes brand new canonical details about the rise of the First Order, the birth of the Resistance, the relationship between Han and Leia, and all manner of information fans have been wondering about since last December. But writer Claudia Gray didn’t stop there; she also explains why Leia has more of an English accent in the first movie than any other appearance, and takes the fan-concept that “Slave Leia” should be renamed “the Huttslayer” and makes it official Star Wars canon. “Not only did I like recasting that outfit as a memory of Leia being really strong and kick-ass, but think about it—for a human being to kill a Hutt with her bare hands? That’s unbelievable,” Gray told Entertainment Weekly about the move. “Anybody who would be able to pull that off would be remembered for it. That would be legend.” (Those still on the fence about checking the book out: Rian Johnson contributed to the plot, seeding elements of Episode VIII in there, but no one is even hinting at what those elements might be. Read and speculate.)
Meet The New Han Solo (For Real, This Time)
Source: Multiple Internet reports
Probability of Accuracy: Although Disney hasn’t officially announced it yet, the sheer volume of people 100 percent convinced this is true would suggest that it’s a done deal. Well, almost.
The Real Deal: As has been strongly rumored for some time, Hail, Caesar!‘s Alden Ehrenreich will play a young Han Solo in the prequel movie scheduled for 2018. The actor’s name has remained in the running for a number of months as the short list for the role kept getting shorter and shorter, and sources are now claiming that he’s negotiating terms with the studio. The fact that Disney hasn’t commented on the matter yet leaves a small amount of wiggle room that things could fall through at the eleventh hour, but barring that unfortunate scenario, it’s time to start lobbying directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller to insert a scene where Han has to tell someone, “would that it were so simple”. (Come on, Lord and Miller. You know you want to.) Now, who’s going to play Chewbacca…?
Episode VIII Will Up the Surprise Cameo Ante Significantly
Source: British newspaper reports
Probability of Accuracy: On the one hand, they’re reports from British newspapers. On the other, they haven’t been contested by anybody…
The Real Deal: What’s that? You thought The Force Awakens had taken the secret cameo game to a whole new level with Daniel Craig’s stormtrooper? (Everyone knew about Simon Pegg playing Unkar Plutt already, right?) Well, Rian Johnson has seen what J.J. Abrams can do, and gone a full Spin Doctors better, adding two princes to the mix. Yes, according to the Daily Mail, Princes William and Harry will appear in Star Wars: Episode VIII as stormtroopers at an undisclosed point in the movie. According to the Mail, spokesmen for the royals “would neither confirm nor deny” their cameos, so the proof will be in the movie itself, which hits theaters in December 2017. If any of the stormtroopers sound more posh than the others and call Poe a peasant, at least we’ll know why.
Why, Yes, Rogue One Will Have a Very Star Wars-esque Theme
Source: Mads Mikkelsen (maybe)
Probability of Accuracy: It all depends on how playful you believe Mikkelsen was being at the time, really.
The Real Deal: This is an odd one. After months of secrecy surrounding the identity of Mads Mikkelsen’s character in this holiday season’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, it appears that the actor accidentally revealed who he was playing during an interview on British television:
Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen reveals that he’s playing the father of the main character in Star Wars film Rogue One https://t.co/6dagUqZB2j
— Sky News (@SkyNews) April 28, 2016
Assuming that this was a genuine reveal, and not Mads merely playing a joke on the host and everyone watching, this puts Rogue One in safe Star Wars territory, considering how much of the central saga relies on relationships between leads and their fathers (or, in the case of the prequels, father figures). Of course, that is assuming that Mikkelsen isn’t playing with everyone here, and that he actually plays an important role in the movie.
Time to Make That Poe/Finn Ship Canon, Lucasfilm
Source: GLADD’s annual report on media representation of LGTBQ characters
Probability of Accuracy: They’re not wrong, let’s be real.
The Real Deal: In its fourth annual Studio Responsibility Index—a study into movie studios’ diversity when it comes to onscreen representation of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender characters—the organization GLAAD suggests that Disney can turn around its shameful showing (absolutely no LGBT characters across 11 movies released in 2015) with one simple move: “the most obvious place where Disney could include LGBT characters is in the upcoming eighth Star Wars film,” the report reads. It’s not only a good idea, it’s one that’s been discussed before, with Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams saying that “of course” the franchise would be adding queer characters in future installments. “I know that this will happen,” he said in February. “I know it will.” Last year’s novel Star Wars: Aftermath added the franchise’s first canonically gay character in Sinjir Rath Velus, so it’s not as if there hasn’t been groundwork laid down (much to the upset of more conservative fans). But when it comes to getting a gay character in the movies… Well, let’s just say that it could be time for Rian Johnson and Lucasfilm to give the fans what they want and out Poe as someone who’s really, really into Finn. What do you think, Rian?
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