Earlier this week Bob Iger, chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company, announced during a televised interview several spinoff movies were in development. Iger said the original focus was on the sequel trilogy, but these stand alone films have been on the table since their earliest discussions.
Lucasfilm officials followed up on Feb. 5 with a press release confirming the involvement of screenwriters Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg. These names excited fans, as Kasdan was the scribe for not only The Empire Strikes Back, Raiders of the Lost Ark, but also co-wrote Return of the Jedi. Kinberg has also proved himself, with blockbusters like Sherlock Holmes.
They also confirmed that two spinoff films were in development, sparking speculation throughout the Internet.
According to Feb. 6 online article by Entertainment Weekly, the films will focus on a young Han Solo and Boba Fett, respectively. They cited sources close to both projects. Of course, Lucasfilm and Disney declined to comment or confirm this information.
Entertainment Weekly reported the Boba Fett film could either take place between A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back, or between Empire and Return of the Jedi. They added further, Temuera Morrison is the shoe in to take on the role as the infamous bounty hunter.
I have my doubts about Entertainment Weekly’s “exclusive,” because they also said there’s no indication of who may direct these films – which Lucasfilm had already announced the day previous to the column’s online publishing that the two films already have directors – Kasdan and Kinberg – why wouldn’t sources close to the projects know this?
Since Iger made his announcement, websites have been spilling all kinds of rumors and information about the spinoff movies. However, most of these news sources that have “exclusive” information also present bogus information, like that Han Solo was a “bounty hunter with a conscious who befriended Luke Skywalker” or misspelling Lucasfilm.
I have no doubt that a Boba Fett film is being discussed behind the secretive walls of Lucasfilm and Disney, but take everything with a grain of salt, until there’s further announcements by Disney or Lucasfilm.
It only took 24 hours for Dark Horse’s new series, “Star Wars,” to sell out during its debut on Jan. 9. Set in the original trilogy era, the happenings of the story arc, “In the Shadow of Yavin,” document the fallout from the destruction of the Death Star by the Rebel Alliance.
Within a few days of its release, Dark Horse staff announced a second print would be made available on Feb. 6, featuring a cover stripped of any text, so fans can revel in the cover art by comic legend Alex Ross.
The same day as the first issue’s release, a blog entry by the comic’s writer, Brian Wood, was ran on StarWars.com, and a few days later re-posted on Dark Horse’s website. Wood shares he aimed to capture the tone and feel of the original trilogy and feature a story that transpires only days after the final events of “A New Hope.”
Wood teases the series will be, “heavy on space battles and snubfighter dogfights. A series that gets into the emotional states of our post-Tattooine, post-Alderaan, post-Yavin characters who have lost so much yet press on in their fight for freedom.”
If there were any doubts that Wood would deliver the space battles and tales of peril he promises, fans were rewarded with a four-page preview of “Star Wars” #2 through the digital pages of Entertainment Weekly.
What is guaranteed to entice another sold out issue is the reveal that the second issue features the infamous bounty hunter, Boba Fett. In the preview, we see the Millennium Falcon avoiding fire by Slave I as the smugglers navigate space debris.
Scheduled for release on Feb. 13, the second issue hones in on Han Solo and Chewbacca as they attempt to evade the capture of Boba Fett; we’ll also see Darth Vader carry out a secret mission assigned to him by the Emperor.
While the Empire doesn’t formally issue a bounty for Han Solo and company until “Empire Strikes Back,” it is already known after Solo’s encounter with Greedo in “A New Hope” that he is wanted by Jabba the Hutt.
Hiding in space debris, Solo believes they’re safe from being found, however, a ship appears on their radar. When identifying the ship, Solo realizes the immediate danger once they see Slave I fast approaching. Why is this interesting? This tells us Solo and Boba Fett have a history before the happenings of the original trilogy.
The chase between Fett and Solo is a common trope in Star Wars comics, so the challenge for Woods will be to make it fresh and new. How will Han Solo escape, or will he? I’d be interested to see what story unfolds if Solo and Chewbacca are actually captured – and later escape, of course.
Whatever happens though, this story needs to expand on the relationship between the bounty hunter and smuggler – besides the tired “cat and mouse” angle to their encounters. Unlike other bounty hunters, consider his run in with Greedo at the Catina – the films illustrate Han Solo having a genuine fear toward Fett.
I’m crossing my fingers we get a tale that explains why Solo takes the threat of Boba Fett more seriously than other hired guns.
Boba Fett was featured on front cover and inside of the Nov. 23 issue of Entertainment Weekly. Managing editor Jess Cagle’s commentary on the inside page made an aside that when developing the cover art for this week’s issue, their was an internal debate on whether they should have used Chewbacca’s image instead of Boba Fett - but in the end the bounty hunter won out. Boba Fett beating Chewbacca for a place on the cover has a touch of irony, since Boba is known for wearing Wookie braids attached to his cape.
In this week’s Entertainment Weekly, the three men who’ve played Boba Fett in featured films were brought together for a special double sized reunion issue.
Staff writer Matthew Salacuse spoke with actor Jeremy Bulloch, stunt man Dickey Beer and film/voice actor Daniel Logan about their experiences playing the most popular bounty hunter in the Star Wars universe.
“He muttered only four measly lines in the original Star Wars trilogy. But badass bounty hunter Boba Fett still became a fan favorite from the minute Darth Vader summoned him to hunt down Han Solo in The Empire Strikes Back. In order to properly fete the Fett, we used a tracking device to locate and reunite three of the men who played the supercool (and super-quiet) criminal,” – Matthew Salacuse, Entertainment Weekly.
Bulloch shares his oddest fan request and biggest regret, Beer tells how he performed stunt fighting for both Luke Skywalker and Boba Fett (therefore, battling himself in Return of the Jedi) and Logan speaks on how he first thought he’d get to wear a jet pack – but then discovered he would only wear a blue jumpsuit that looked like pajamas.
Those are just a taste of the interesting stories explored in the two page interview. If you’re not a subscriber to Entertainment Weekly, I highly recommend snatching this issue up at your local grocery store or newspaper stand.