There are still a lot of things we don't know about Star Wars Episode VII, but thanks to Disney CEO Bob Iger, we now know when it takes place.
The Walt Disney Company held its annual shareholders' meeting today, and in between announcements about other new film projects, Iger dropped a small nugget of information about the next Star Wars film that, at a time when so many things about the project are still uncertain, seemed like some of the biggest clear news we've heard about the flick in some time.
According to Coming Soon, Iger revealed that Episode VII will take place 30 years after Return of the Jedi, and will feature "a trio of new young leads along with some very familiar faces."
It's not much, but it does give us a somewhat clearer picture of the film's structure and direction, even if we don't know for sure exactly who those "new young leads" are or just how much those "very familiar faces" will be involved. Will the film star Lupita Nyong'o, Jesse Plemons and Adam Driver, or are we in for a completely different cast? Will Harrison Ford pilot the Millennium Falcon once again? We still can't say for sure, but we might be able to soon.
Disney also revealed one more key piece of information about the project that basically confirmed what many already suspected: Production on Episode VII will begin at London's Pinewood Studios in May. Production means actors, of course, and actors mean the Star Wars news we've all been hoping for since Episode VII was announced way back in 2012: casting announcements. At least, we hope that's what we can expect, but given writer/director J.J. Abrams' legendary (some would say infuriating) attraction to mystery, we might be in the dark a while longer.
In the meantime, the news that 30 years have passed since the defeat of Emperor Palpatine does offer us plenty to think about in terms of where the film will take the Star Wars universe. Are there still Imperial remnants out there? Has Luke succeeded in rebuilding the Jedi Order? How's the new Galactic Republic (assuming it'll be called that) faring? These are all exciting things to think about, even if we do have to keep waiting a while longer for actual plot details to come to light.
Star Wars: Episode VII hits theaters Dec. 18, 2015.