Alan Horne On STAR WARS VII’s Cast, Budget, George Lucas’ Role And More

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star-wars-episode-vii-logoStar Wars Episode VII has actually begun to do a little filming, but we still know absolutely nothing about the film other than J.J. Abrams is directing based on a script by himself and Lawrence Kasdan with a December 18, 2015 release date set. While it doesn’t look like we’ll get another solid casting information for a while yet, Disney Studios’ chairman Alan Horne offered up a few new details in a recent interview with Bloomberg TV. The head of the House of Mouse talked about casting, filming, George Lucas‘ role in the new trilogy, and what sort of budget Abrams will have.

There have be an unstoppable deluge of Star Wars casting rumors, but nothing official has been announced other than the fact R2-D2 will be coming back. When asked if casting is complete and Disney is just holding off to make the announcement, Horne stated that casting wasn’t complete just yet. He told the site, “It’s almost complete. We’re not prepared to announce it yet, but we will be very shortly.” That would seem to indicate that the filming that went on just a week ago was some second unit work and location shots. Horne confirmed that bit of speculation, admitting “We did some second unit work in Abu Dhabi and other places, because we have all these locations we have to film and we have to give it that Star-Warsian look…We haven’t commenced the main part of principal photography yet.

header-jj-abrams-discusses-his-approach-to-star-wars-episode-viiThe other thing fans have been debating on the web is the December release date. Star Wars films are usually released in May, but the first entry in the new trilogy will debut in December so Abrams and company can have a little more time to work on the movie. The next two entries in the new trilogy could well revert back to the May release though, with Horne teasing “We may revert–the Star Wars dates have been May– and we may revert to that at some point. But it depends on the readiness of the screenplays and where we are. But this first one will be December 18th of 2015. So we’ll start with that and then we’ll see.”  Another thing we’ll have to wait and see if just how financially successful the film is. There’s really no question on whether or not it makes a lot of money, it’s just how much money it will make. The budget hasn’t been revealed just yet, but Horne said we can probably expect it to be in the neighborhood of $175-200 million. The chairman says that the budget will be large enough to “give the audience, essentially, a full meal in return for their affection and devotion and love for these properties.

Finally, Horne touched yet again on George Lucas‘ role in the new trilogy. There has been some confusion on just how much of a hand the creator and director will have in the new trilogy after selling his rights to Disney, but Horne once again spelled out what Lucas will do moving forward. He finished up by stating, “George is a consultant. The understanding is when he sold the company–and he did sell the company to Walt Disney Company–so he’s very aware of that. So we now are the primary drivers behind this property. But he is a very valued person. He’s the father of all this. Kathy [Kennedy] interacts with him, back and forth I think.” So there’s your Star Wars update for now. More official news is coming, though we have no clue when that may be. What do you think about Horne‘s comments?

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Source : Bloomberg TV