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Rumor: Has Star Wars: Episode VIII Filming Been Pushed Back to February? New Asian Actress in Contention?

Episode VIIILast week The Wrap reporter Jeff Sneider shared on the Meet the Movie Press show that Bel Powley is in contention for a role in Episode VIII, as was Gina Rodrigues who was rumored before. Now Sneider revealed that Gina didn’t get the part and mentioned some new interesting bits he’s been told about the Episode VIII production…

 

From Meet the Movie Press:

Last week we mentioned Bel Powely and Gina Rodrigues. Now I heard Gina didn’t get it. Now I am told Episode VIII has been pushed about a month. Rian Johnson is going to do another rewrite, and I heard an Asian actress got the role Bel and Gina were up for. But I don’t know if the Bel Powely thing will work out.

 

I said before there were two young female roles, now I actually heard that the rewrite will make these roles smaller. They want to get to know better the characters they already have. So the new rewrite is shrinking the new roles in order to spend more time with Rey, Poe and so on.

Sneider also mentioned that the Asian actress is from a small agency and she is not very well known. If true, casting an Asian actress in Episode VIII will be a very smart move by Disney. As you know, despite the huge promotion for The Force Awakens in China (including 500 stormtroopers climbing The Great Wall), the movie didn’t perform very well, since the franchise is fairly unknown there, and it just took its first steps in a larger world. An actress from these parts of the world will definitely boost the viewings of Episode VIII in the second largest movie market in the world.

China

 

For those of you who don’t know, Jeff Sneider is a very well know writer for The Wrap. He is very credible but as he said himself, these are some things he heard about the movie, and he doesn’t know if they will pan out. Everything is possible. Episode VIII was expected to begin filming this month, so very soon we will find out if the rumors are true.

 

Another thing worth mentioning is that rewrites are absolutely normal for every movie, and there is no need for any panic. Quite the contrary. The rewrites are what make the movie better.

 

 

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  • Ggg

    Does anyone know if Rouge One filming is done, if not, when does it end?

  • TUD

    Sounds good to me. I want to see lots of Poe, Finn, and Rey, so shrinking the other actress’ role is fine. And casting an Asian actress is very a very smart choice.

    • Adavanter Mki

      Yeah I gotta say I loved the three of them enough to really just want to dwell on them. Well them and Ren.

      • fishnets

        Yes. Focus on new characters we are not invested in would be stupid. We have the TFA 4 (Rey,Ren,Finn,Poe), everyone else who comes aboard should not steal screen time.

  • Pinché Memo

    That’s good. Never a good thing to rush a script. RJ knows what he’s doing.

  • RichIsWrong

    This guy, Sneider, also heard Spiderman wouldn’t be white and we know how that turned up. And no, Bryan Cranston is not a villain in Star Trek Beyond. Grain of salt.

  • David James

    Glad to see they want to keep the focus on the three new leads they already established in TFA, although frankly it’s amazing that they were ever considering otherwise. Did they not expect audiences to embrace these new characters as much as they did or something?

    Although at the same time it is a bit concerning that Rian is doing a last minute rewrite on a script that JJ and others already thought was pretty great…

    • Pinché Memo

      I’m certain it’s quite possible to rewrite and polish some of the script, without changing the substance of it.

      I doubt very much it’s going to be as drastic as the difference between Lucas’ first draft of TPM, and the mess we got onscreen.

    • Mathew

      Well, Empire added in Lando. As for JJ already thinking the script is great, hopefully this makes it even more great.

    • fishnets

      This is a good rewrite. I was so freakin annoyed by all those reports that they are casting new leading female character. WTF? Rey is the lead, that new character is not. Now they are coming to their senses and minimizing new roles.

  • Me Vil

    I don’t agree. Rewrite not always makes a movie better.
    That’s the problem of majority of movies. Rewriting (and 4/6/8 hand scripts).
    I don’t like rewrites.
    If it’s true I will take this news in a different way cause Rian will rewrite HIS script.

    • Dudley Dippingbrior

      Colin Trevorrow probably couldn’t understand Johnson’s vision so they are dumbing it down for him to continue the story when it is his turn.

    • Pinché Memo

      Bit of a difference between re-writing the script, and rewriting and polishing certain aspects of a script. RJ is a fantastic screenwriter, and I think we should all be quite stoked with him writing both 8 and 9.

      • Me Vil

        Yes, of course, And I really really trust in Rian. It’s a relieve he is writing both scripts.
        And would be great if the directing part of both episodes are related with personal visions of the director’s early works, like Brick, Looper and Safety not guaranteed.

        • Pinché Memo

          Well, this is why all 3 directors are working together on the saga. It’s all good things.

          • Me Vil

            That’s the good part, of course. ;)

    • evan

      Yeah but it is RJ cleaning up his own stuff. Its not like they are bringing in someone else to completely redo it. And it is only a month, so it cant be anything major.

      • Me Vil

        Yes, That’s what I said. He will rewrite or polishing his script. Problems are minor that way.

  • Tim Blad

    Because of TFA success, they’ve decided to stick to the play it safe format of TFA. By pushing it back a month, they’ll have enou time to take out anything remotely ambitious and replace it with a Empire Strikes Back retread.

    Oh crap, this is me just trolling the vastly superior Star War Fans we have here, the ones who gang up on you if you criticize TFA familiarity. Man, I better have my armor on today.

    Hell, I even liked the PT. That’s a crime around here.

    • Kenny Ritchie

      Lol.

    • TUD

      How do you know that? Oh yeah, you actually don’t. So please shut up.

      • Tim Blad

        Thanks for proving my point. Which ironically had little to do with Ep. 8, and everything to do with the Ep. 7 protection club that has formed here.

        • TUD

          Proving your point? You made an assertion with no real evidence and I pointed this out. Sorry for protecting Episode 7 to my last breath!!

          • Tim Blad

            Really, no evidence. You mean other than the fact they just played it safe and offered us a pretty damn good play it safe New Hope retread.

            I care little people stick up for the movie, I actually enjoyed it.

            But everytime on this site someone dares point out that they made mistakes, played it safe, went too much familiarity, and mangled some parts, the protection force comes out, but not to stick up for the move, nope, they attack people personally.

            Start calling them trolls, questioning whether they are even Star Wars fans.

            It’s stupid. I have read most of the books, spent thousands on toys, dressed up as characters, etc.

            I can criticize what J.J. Did and still very much love Starwars. No matter what The Ignorant gang wants to say.

            • TUD

              You can criticize it, yes. But you said

              “Because of TFA success, they’ve decided to stick to the play it safe format of TFA. By pushing it back a month, they’ll have enou time to take out anything remotely ambitious and replace it with a Empire Strikes Back retread.”

              You have no proof of this AT ALL, and it makes you sound stupid. Therefore, you should stop saying it.

              • Tim Blad

                You know what sounds stupid, you thinking that I’ve offered no proof, or at least valid logic behind my statement. What are you, in high school or something. I feel like I’m debating my kid brother. Are you really that concerned about what I say about your precious J.J. Directed Ep. 7.

                Let me see, how would I brake this down for my kid brother so he can understand the critical thinking aspect. Oh, let’s try this:

                1. Ep. 7 wasn’t very ambitious, and they basically copied the story from Ep. 4. You can’t really argue against that, it’s not valid if you do. Especially since those who made the movie pretty much have said they intended to do it.

                2. Said Ep. 7 was hugely successful in every measure those who make movies use to gauge success. Money, critics, nominations to award shows. This movie has done extremely well.

                3. Well, if Disney just hit jackpot by going the not so ambitious route, and it worked, it’s probably a good bet they’d at least be inclined to follow suit with the next installment. Why mess with something so successful.

                4. A week or two before filming for Ep. 8 starts, it comes out they’ve pushed the film back another month so the script could be rewritten.

                And the reasoning, well, because they decided to focus on the characters who made up the reason for the widley panned Ep. 7. Hmm, pretty strong indicator that they are tweaking things back to a play it safe that got them these great characters. Of which all three I LOVED, just in case you were thinking about throwing a high school fit.

                Ok, let’s sum this up. I’ve offered a pretty strong argument hear. Now I could rebuttal and say but J.J. And others said the script was great. Dark, etc.

                And that’s be strong. But now they are rewriting that great script, and those who say they loved it, also lived Ep. 7.

                So do you have any evidence I’m wrong, if not. I’m gonna continue saying it.

                • breaker90

                  My goodness, take a class on logic. Your argument actually argues on why Disney and Lucasfilm should make a ESB rehash. Your argument doesn’t equate to what is happening. You have no proof, just an argument that doesn’t have a conclusion you believe it does.

                  • TUD

                    Exactly.

                    • Tim Blad

                      Exactly what! That he stated that I laid out the reason Disney would want to play it safe again.

                      Well, yea, exactly. That’s EXACTLY what I was attempting to do, lay out an argument what it is LIKELY Disney will want to do another play it safe retread.

                      Never once told you this is PROOF that they are actually doing it, only that these recent moves appear to point to the likIlyhoid of it happening again.

                      So EXACTLY.

                  • Tim Blad

                    Umm, duh. You realize you just stated what I did. My argument does show why Disney would want to play it safe again, it’s the entire underpinning of my argument. I’m glad you caught that, although I’m not exactly sure why it’s invalid then. No one ever stated I was laying down proof of what is to come! It’s informed speculation, something neither of you have offered. Only fallacies.

                    1. Disney found a lot of success with playing it safe.
                    2. Disney likely will do it again.
                    3. Is there any reason to believe Disney is gonna take risks this time? Is there?

                    I welcome one of you two to lay out a valid argument why they would.

                    I don’t recall ever saying I had inside information on what they will do, everyone is speculating

                    Of course my argument is why they should do it, But not proof as too why they are. I’m laying out the very reason they are likely to do it. “LIKELY”. The word likely is the qualifier here.

                    It’s not my fault you two can’t seem to get this.

                    No one said they are 100% doing it, I’ve actually stated that to the dude above, but what I’ve said is the growing evidence, script rewrite/delay to add more about current characters, would tend to point to another play it safe movie.

                    Problem he has is he is bent out of shape that anyone would suggest such a thing.

                    If he went around telling everyone who is speculating on what the next move is, he’d be telling 75% of us to shut up.

                    Oh wait, should I say 75%, one of you may come along and tell me I don’t know if it’s 75% or not. Really. Thanks guy!

                    I sware, so people really can’t handle anyone saying anything negative about Ep. 7.

                • TUD

                  That’s not proof, that’s your baseless speculation. Get over yourself.

          • Tim Blad

            Oh, and I wasn’t exactly talking about you anyways. But telling me to shut up was where you proved my point. People should welcome diverse opinions. Not try to shut them down.

            • TUD

              Well excuse me, but when someone starts blasting off ridiculous statements with no proof, I always advise them to just stop talking. And that goes both ways.

              • Tim Blad

                Ask yourself, who are you that you’d think I’d even contemplate even listening to you “advisement” or care. And no one blasted off with rediculus statements, it’s just you fans boys can’t deal with some simple truths.

                Episode 7 was anything but ambitious. They stuck with what they know works.

                It’s it really rediculus to surmise they may do this again, considering the level of success they are having. Nope, it would seem to me, they only thing rediculus, is to think it’s unlikely.

                I guess the truth hurts maybe. Denial, a powerful drug.

                By the way Mr. Super duper Starwars fan, I take my earlier statement back. You are exactly the kind of commenter my earlier statement was targeted at.

                Now feel free to rant away, and give me advice that I’ll wholly ignore.

    • mabruno

      RJ’s original script was probably too “weird”, as Lawrence Kasdan said. The studio and the producers demanded a rewrite to play safe,

      • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

        Why we’ll probably never see his or Arndt’s.

        • Dudley Dippingbrior

          we did eventually see Frank Darabont’s Indy 4 script and honestly it wasn’t much better if better at all.

          • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

            Yeah, Sadly all these screenwriting legends are long past their prime. Depressing to see. Like Jordan’s last game.

            • NYJD21

              Can Rian Johnson be our Steph Curry? Or Max Landis (lol)? Or…I guess Aaron Sorkin?

              • Pinché Memo

                Max Landis? Dear god…I just barfed.

              • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                I just hope he’s not the Micheal Arndt.

      • Tim Blad

        That’s my guess, but I hope not. Disney realizing the play it safe method was hugely successful, probably wouldn’t want to mess with it. Can’t blame them, but don’t like it.

      • Me Vil

        TFA probably didn’t take risks at all for some people (which i can disagree in some aspects of the movie). But for my was perfect. I love TFA the way it is. I enjoyed so much.
        And probably i will enjoy EVIII being as good as TFA if they play safe. But i think they have to risk now. It has to be “weird”.
        Play safe it means play like all actual blockbusters, and majority of times don’t work so well.
        My opinion.

    • Kicker2

      No, I actually think they’d try to move away from ESB, because they don’t want the supposed “rehash” backlash to get them next time.

      • Pinché Memo

        Well, it will certainly be more like ESB in tone. It’s the middle act of a trilogy – it has to be a bit darker than the first act…but of course SOMEONE will call it a rehash regardless, because “It had STAR WARS in the title! Rehash! Ugh!” ;)

      • Tim Blad

        I won’t mind if the tone takes the same, that’s standard story telling. It’s gonna get darker, because the religious zealots will want to strike back, although what they can do after killing who knows how many millions of people, that is beyond me. It may be they tell the story of what brought them up to this point, while showing the two sides prepairing their next move.

    • Jason Steiner

      Hey, I liked the PT, too. It isn’t nearly as good as the OT, but still fun films.

      • Pinché Memo

        Over the years I’ve learned to accept the PT, but they’ll never be anywhere near the quality of the OT for me, personally.

        I think what makes them tolerable for me, is that at their core the stories are good stories – it was just GL’s execution that tainted them a bit.

        • NYJD21

          GL needed…*gasp* a couple re-writes and they would have been fine.

      • Tim Blad

        I believe the PT it a lot to offer, but had some fundamental flaws, as does Ep. 7. The kiddish direction of the droid army was silly. I liked Jar jar in small doses, but too much was too much.

        I loved the over powered Jedi. I loved the deep connection with explains the political state and how a 10,000 strong army of Jedi were undermined by a few Sith.

        And I think Vaders fall wasn’t as bad as some contend.

        But best of all, it wasn’t a play it safe OT retread.

        It had similarities, but not overwhelmingly.

      • Mutemonster

        Today I just watched the phantom menace Anti-cheese edit it’s so good
        I love this vershions

        • NYJD21

          I tried to watch it. Its definitely better but still couldn’t get through it lol

    • Lora

      I love PT.

  • Scott

    It used to be taking 3 years to make another SW in OT and PT. A year and a half availability could affect the quality of the film.

    • TUD

      Maybe. But you must remember, that’s the time between release. The full production of the ST movies overlap, so each one gets more like 2-3 years of production.

  • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

    The fact that this film is not doing well in parts of the globe where they did not get the earlier films shows that nostalgia was the major driving factor behind this film, No one would have cared had it not been part of the saga. As for VIII, I’d like to see Mon Mothma and General Madine back seeing as how the actors are both still alive and were higher ups in the Rebellion.

    • Pinché Memo

      Not. Doing. Well? I’d argue that it has at least met, or exceed expectations actually.

      • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

        In most of the globe but not so much in China, India, and parts of Latin America who have ginormous populations.

        • NYJD21

          You’d have to present evidence of comparison with other franchises – that have likely been more active in multiple mediums in those places over the past decade, which would make a comparison useless.

          • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

            Transformers, I think it set all kinds of records there for reasons I’ll never know. I think some of the Marvel films too.

            • Pinché Memo

              Because it’s a half-Chinese production. That plays a big part.

            • NYJD21

              Two franchises that have been highly active since ROTS came out. Transformers and Age of Ultron also specifically targeted Asia, like, blatantly did so.

              • TUD

                For real.

                “All of a sudden, we have to race to [insert well-known Asian city here] to stop the bad guys! But we’ll need help from [insert Asian stereotype character here]!!”

              • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                Now we know why they are looking for an Asian lead in VIII and shouldn’t be at all surprised if she’s Chinese though to be fair TFA had the most Asians in any of the films even if they didn’t have many lines.

            • Dee

              Transformers is actually invested by a chinese company so it’s partially a domestic film that is why it can run longer than other foreign films.

              • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                Marvel is not though but I have no idea how long they ran for. They are so scared of getting overthrown that the’ll change the rules at the drop of a hat to keep everyone happy. You can’t really fight a billion unhappy people with nothing to lose which is why things have changed so much there with the advent of technology. Like Iran it will topple eventually just a matter of when not if.

        • Conor

          That is a silly point to make, Just because China has more than a billion people doesn’t mean it all magically equates to more film goers.

          The countries you listed have nowhere near as many cinemas/theatres or IMAX placements as western countries on top of this movies in general are not as popular a form of entertainment as in western countries.

          Its ridiculous to assert that we can compare western countries to China/India or Latin America when the culture and population is vastly different especially in terms of movies.

          TFA is doing incredibly well around the world, just because its not pulling in hundreds of millions of viewers in China because the population is “ginormous” doesn’t mean that it has somehow missed the bar.

          • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

            Not as many theaters but in China, There are plenty familiar with the films through pirating and while their culture may be different than the US it’s not as much so in other places where the film is doing far better.

            The last Transformers did gang busters in China I believe so it’s not like they are averse to blockbusters either.

            • Pinché Memo

              Well, a large part of WHY the last Transformers did so well in China, is partly due to it actually being a partially domestic film for China…hence it had no restrictions on how many theaters it can play in, or for how long.

              SW is a foreign film in China, hence it has many laws by which it much abide by. Only a limited number of theaters, and a maximum run of 4 weeks.

              • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                I think some of the Marvel films set records which there too which were not domestic but I need to look that up.

                • Pinché Memo

                  They have, but they are larger, more proven properties in China with a larger following. SW is relatively new to China, so it’s always had a tougher battle to fight and that was expected going into it.

                  • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                    It’s not a bubble like North Korea though, It’s still very restricted but they have loosened it over the decades to the point where piracy is pretty high and word of mouth spreads. Kind of like grade school kids back in the day who’ve never saw any horror films but their friends would tell them about it or invite them over.

                    • Pinché Memo

                      True, but they still only allow 34 foreign movies to play for a maximum of 4 weeks, by law. That number can be upped to around 45 for some years, but other films have too get bumped, and it has to be approved some time in advance. Thats as of last year.

                    • NYJD21

                      You should check out a passage in Chris Taylor’s book.

                      One guy pirated a copy of Star Wars in the late 1990s in a European country and showed up at a protest dressed as Darth Vader – he almost got arrested because nobody knew what the hell he was.

                      The Phantom Menace comes out in 1999.

                      A couple years later he comes to another protest wearing his Vader suit, and everybody knows who he is.

                    • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                      Was it the Romanian dude?

          • Semiote

            India has an enormous film industry of its own that is one of the biggest in the world: maybe they’re not as interested in foreign films for that reason. If so, it wouldn’t in that respect be much different from the US, where foreign films still represent a rather small market share…

        • Pinché Memo

          And at no time did Disney ever expect the film to be massive in those countries, especially in China where SW is basically a new property.

          It’s actually performed as expected in China. Only dumb ass pundits predicted something massive.

          • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

            Yet it may cost the film the top spot since it’s slowed it’s momentum down a bit.

            • Pinché Memo

              At this point, I don’t think anyone is actually very concerned about it. The film has pulled in $1.8B, which is nothing to scoff at by any metric, and has broken every single record that possibly can minus 1.

              Pretty sure the Big D and LucasFilm are the happiest fuckers on earth right now.

              • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                I know some people here won’t like that but box office means nothing to me, Empire which is my favorite probably did the least best financially.

                • Pinché Memo

                  That’s true, mostly because ESB pissed people off to no end when it first came out, and many big critics panned it (for being unoriginal, oddly enough), but most of the young pups don’t realize that. History has been kind to it.

                  • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                    Inflatio, rising population rates, the creation of home video, and IMAX/3D affect everything too which is why it’s almost impossible to get any hard numbers on tickets sold.

                    • Pinché Memo

                      Well, that would be an almost useless metric as there are more people with more money going to more theaters.

                      But yeah, in the end it doesn’t really matter much. Besides, I think it;s just awesome that we can sit here, or go anywhere and discuss SW/Comic books movies with impunity. People got their asses kicked for that back in the late 80’s. :)

                    • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                      Not really all that different from the old vs new athlete debate where the old ones all smoke/drank and had regular jobs in the off season but the new ones have all kinds of trainers and special diets due to it being such a big business. Not so much about talent as it was how they took care of themselves.

                      The saga is not going away anytime soon that’s for certain. Especially with Disney owning it now. I just hope they don’t overexpose it like they have with other properties and let it breathe a few years after the trilogy ends rather than have 3-4 films per year.

                    • Pinché Memo

                      Agreed. For now, I’m going to give them the benefit of the doubt with a max of 2 films per year Saga/Story.
                      Regardless, I’ll be at the theater with bells and whistles on, as we have since 77. ;)

                    • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                      Why I’m looking forward to Rogue One since it’s the first one ever to not star any force users or in other films. They seem to be playing it off low key but almost as much is riding on it as TFA.

                    • Pinché Memo

                      Yes. I’m very much hoping that it will be the “war” movie and espionage flick that was promised at Celebration. It’s a great premise.

                    • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                      I hope the third spinoff is just as completely different as that one or the Solo film, Long as they do something new each time and it’s not like the main saga then audiences won’t get bored.

                    • Pinché Memo

                      Agreed. It’s such a vast universe, I don’t want to see them get stuck telling useless stories that take us inward. We don’t need a Boba Fett story or anything like that. I’d be up for some KOTOR, Sith Wars, or something whacky like that.

                      At least for Rogue One, it’s box office success is all but assured, riding off the success of TFA, but you’re correct in that a lot is also riding on RO to be a good movie.

                    • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                      It seems like the first three are all set in the OT era which is where the money is so for the next ones they may take chances and do other eras instead.

                    • Pinché Memo

                      Good point. Still, an old fanboy can dream.

                    • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                      They probably won’t do any PT ones but I think Clone Wars did a good enough job answering all the questions in that one even if the show was never finished.

                    • Pinché Memo

                      Agreed.

                    • Snark Vader (alias Grant)

                      I thnk Obi-Wan will be the third spinoff. The Fett stuff will probably be saved for the live-action TV series someday.