Star Wars: The Force Awakens has unleashed some brand-new stills from the movie set in a galaxy far, far away.
The new images come courtesy of EW’s Fall Preview coverage and show our new heroes Finn (John Boyega), Rey (Daisy Ridley) and Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac). We also have a look at our bad guys Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), the leader of the First Order General Hux (Domhnall Gleeson) and Captain Phasma (Gwendoline Christie). This is actually our first official look at Hux, the Star Wars baddie who’s described as "a cruel leader of The First Order who craves to show the galaxy his might."
Also in the gallery below are Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew), and our favorite droids (these are the droids we’re looking for), C-3PO (Anthony Daniels, with new red arm), R2-D2 (Kenny Baker) and BB-8.
In the article, Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy revealed what she did to get her man coax Abrams to sign on to helm Star Wars in the first place. The Star Trek director had turned down the offer at first, but after going to a few other directors, Kennedy went back to Abrams and asked him one very intriguing question:
“In the context of talking about story and laying out what we were thinking, I said one thing to him,” Kennedy recalls. “‘Who is Luke Skywalker?’” Abrams, who’s 49 now but was only 11 when the original Star Wars debuted in 1977, decided he needed to know the answer, even if he had to devise it himself. “He said, ‘Oh my God, I just got the chills. I’m in,’” Kennedy says. “I mean, it really was almost that quickly.”
When Abrams signed on for Episode VII, there was no finalized story, despite many possibilities. Screenwriter Michael Arndt was working on the story and screenplay along with Lawrence Kasdan, who’d penned The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi and is currently working on the young Han Solo standalone movie, and Simon Kinberg (Arndt later left the project over the intense development process, leaving Abrams and Kasdan on scripting duties):
“[They] had just been hypothesizing and throwing out a bunch of what-ifs, but there was no story in place,” Abrams says. “It was, without doubt, a formidable assignment. There were so many options and so many paths that could be taken. Even when we were in debate — and sometimes it was frustrating and heated — it was always thrilling, because it seemed almost everywhere you looked there was something potentially extraordinary, which felt very much like the DNA of Star Wars itself.”
As for Kasdan, the question he asked himself when writing the story was this (and it’s basically going back to Who is Luke Skywalker?):
“I thought, ‘Wow, okay, these people have lived — they’re in a different place in their lives, Han and Leia and so on. They’ve lived the same 30 years I have. What would that be like? How would you see things differently?’” Kasdan says. “And I was trying to figure out how I saw things differently, and one of the surprises is that you don’t learn all that much. You haven’t become much wiser than you were, and things are not clearer to you, and the world is just as confusing as it always was — and that’s a kind of lovely thing to get to write about again. Age does not necessarily bring wisdom; it just brings experience.”
Check out the new pics below, and let us know what you think. Will you be heading to a theater hopefully not too far away on Dec. 18 to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens?