It is most definitely a good time to be a Star Wars fan, with Star Wars: Episode VII hitting theaters in 2015, along with another series of stand-alone movies, written by Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg, arriving at an unspecified date.
Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg talk the Star Wars spin-offs and Frank Oz may return to voice Yoda
Lawrence Kasdan briefly spoke about getting back to work on the franchise (he also wrote Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back and Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi). Here's what he had to say about working on the spin-offs, and consulting with Star Wars: Episode VII director J.J. Abrams and writer Michael Arndt.
"They're going to be fun. J.J. (Abrams) is a great director for the first sequel. Perfect. We're very happy to have him. The writers I've been working with - Michael Arndt, who's going to write the sequel, and Simon Kinberg, who has, like me, been sort of consulting - they're great. I've never really collaborated a lot, and I've never been a room with a bunch of writers thinking, 'Well, what should this thing be?' It's fun. It's really fun. And J.J. is a writer. Yeah, lovely guy. I'd met him but didn't know him. But now I'm totally enamored by him. He's really funny and so enthusiastic."
Simon Kinberg also spoke a bit about working on the franchise, although he would not divulge too much because he doesn't want the fans to be spoiled with too much information.
"This is what I would say: as a fan, I wouldn't want to know too much. I know that's impossible because it's not the '70s or '80s anymore, but part of what was so exciting about A New Hope for me was I was entering into a universe I didn't know. Even in Empire, I was surprised by a twist I never would have seen coming. But it's different nowadays. I understand the excitement, and I'm happy that people are interested, obviously. But I'd rather people have something left to discover when they go in."
In related news, we reported earlier this week that the first stand-alone movie is going to focus on Yoda, news which has not been confirmed as of yet. If this does prove to be true, though, fans need not worry about who will provide the Jedi Master's voice. Frank Oz, who voiced Yoda in all six movies, revealed that he would come back to voice the iconic character again. However, he does not believe Yoda will be conceived as a puppet like the original trilogy, but that he will be CGI as presented in the second trilogy.
"He's in my heart. I know Yoda very deeply. The future of Yoda is likely in CGI, as he was rendered in Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones and Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith 3D. I think it depends on the story, but I think at this point you can't go back to the puppet. The reason George (Lucas) did the CGI, which I supported, was that he wanted to tell a story that would have been hampered by the physical limitations of the puppet."