Tuesday, 16 February 2016

Production begins on Star Wars: Episode VIII

News arrives via the official Star Wars website that cameras are now rolling on Star Wars: Episode VIII. The Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) follow-up began production in earnest last week, but now principal photography has now been officially confirmed by Lucasfilm, which posted a quick production video to mark the occasion.

The brief 34-second video shows Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker and Daisy Ridley as Rey, as they appeared in the final scenes of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Then we see a brief behind the scenes glimpse at new director, Rian Johnson (Looper), yelling "cut!".

Alongside the video, Walt Disney Pictures have released a press release, revealing key cast and crew. As expected, most of Star Wars: The Force Awakens key cast – Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong'o, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, Gwendoline Christie, and Andy Serkis – will be return.

As previously rumoured, newcomers to the cast include Benicio Del Toro (Savages), who is thought to be playing a villain, and newcomer Kelly Marie Tran. Also joining the cast – and someone who had not been previously rumoured – is the great Laura Dern (The Fault In Out Stars).

Filming is taking place at Pinewood Studios in London, with location shooting taking in Skellig Michael, off the coast of Ireland, and Dubrovnik, Croatia. Star Wars: Episode VIII (full title yet to be revealed) is due for worldwide release on 15 December 2017. Until, we have anthology movie Rogue One: A Star Wars Story to look forward to, due to arrive 16 December this year.

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