Star Wars: Episode VII director JJ Abrams has humorously and syn-onymously become known as “Mr. Mysterybox,” BUT, despite his best efforts, his mystery box continues to leak. Find out the latest scoops after the jump.
Strong in the Force is JJ Abrams who landed two of the [arguably] biggest franchises this decade with the Star Trek reboot and now the Star Wars rebirth. His high profile films obviously warrant alot of geek attention. But the genius — and I mean that in all sincerity since I am an avid supporter of the director — that is JJ Abrams has constantly anticipated all form of leak and unwanted exposure, coming prepared with NDA’s, signs warning about “loose lips sinking ships,” and as we have just learned via /Film an apparent DroneShield.
What the Hell is a DroneShield you may be asking just as I did? Apparently a DroneShield is something that can be ordered from the company with the same name. According to their site:
“DroneShield Provides Advanced Warning of Harassment by Drones and Helicopters
Harassment from drones and helicopters used by paparazzi and other unauthorized pursuers is a growing problem around the world. DroneShield can provide advanced warning of helicopters and drones commonly used by paparazzi and media. Alerts are sent by email or SMS and can be linked to alarm and security response teams and data collected is preserved for subsequent legal proceedings.”
According to /Film the website Motherboard apparently got ahold of a billing invoice from DroneShield themselves proving that such an order was placed from Pinewood Studios. First, this clearly proves that JJ and company had anticipated the potential of drone and/or helicopter snooping for this leg of the production. Secondly, IF this alleged invoice proves to be genuine this is an alarming bit of “evidence” as it suggests that someone from within this company named DroneShield — supposedly invested in supplying security solutions for high profile clientele — has violated this trust by leaking the invoice to Motherboard. And thirdly, and perhaps most importantly, DroneShield was incapable of providing the product according to Motherboard:
“…the folks over at DroneShield say that Pinewood Studios never actually got the product: The State Department keeps close tabs on products like these that are shipped overseas, and a rep at DroneShield told me the company’s export application never went through. So, no DroneShield to protect against Star Wars leaks.
“We weren’t able to ship overseas because our ITAR (export) application, filed in May, hadn’t been approved,” the rep told me in an email. “It is now September and it STILL hasn’t been approved.”
According to the rep, the company has orders from at least 20 overseas companies, but it still doesn’t have permission to ship the DroneShield.”
However, one has to wonder how credible this story is. We have a company that is claiming they have an invoice for a product they weren’t even legally authorized to sell outside the United States. More disturbingly, the company readily claims a rather lackadaisical and unprofessional attitude about the whole incident if it is in fact true. It seems to this Blogger that DroneShield should have used the same kind of foresight that JJ, via Disney/LFL/Bad Robot, when they ordered the product. As /Film put it:
“Of course, the only people confirming this is the company that produces the unit, and this story is giving them publicity, so who knows if this is true or not.”
I’m not exactly sure why DroneShield would volunteer to air their ineptitude to the world only to be associated with Episode VII if even in a dubious way. I’m only reminded by the ol’ Hollyweird saying, “Even bad publicity is good publicity,” or something to that affect. So what is a rather strange, if not interesting, story gets a little more interesting as we add our own exclusive bit to it. As you will recall we recently have been covering the Greenham Common story. One of our sources that lives near the site told us that he heard that a drone was shot down recently. What this information suggests to us is that the story may in fact be true since it also suggests that:
1) JJ and co were in fact anticipating the drone and helicopter intrusions
2) They did NOT receive the DroneShield product
3) They resorted to Plan B, which it would seem is some form of OFFICIAL UK Military or Law Enforcement contingency
Whether this is fact or fiction only time will tell, but be sure to keep checking back here for the updates. And be sure to log into The Cantina to discuss this and other topics with all our fellow Star Wars fans!