After taking over scripting duties on Gareth Edwards’ Star Wars spinoff film a little over a month ago, Chris Weitz has remained fairly mum on his high-profile new gig. Until now.
With Weitz hitting the press circuit to promote his new live-action Cinderella film (which is riding some positive word of mouth), /Film caught up with him to pose a few Star Wars questions. Weitz obviously couldn’t spill much (or anything) in regard to the closely guarded plot, but he did talk about his passion for the franchise and approach toward writing such a revered property.
He threw a nod to all the work original writer Gary Whitta did to get the bones of the script in place, and said he’s only trying to help flesh out the spirit of what the film is supposed to be. He also talked about trying not to blow the interview by geeking out too much. Check out some choice excerpts below:
“Well I think it still is the core. But in terms of…in a weird way, it was like meeting for any assignment. Go in, talk about how you work and talk about the idea, but of course there was A) A huge security component to it. I wasn’t able to see the script until kind of after I was brought on board. And B) I saw Star Wars when I was 7 and it was a formative experience in my life, let alone in the notion of filmmaking. I’m probably only working on this stuff because I did have that experience then. But it completely possessed me when I was a child and it was a huge part of my kind of emotional make up. So I tried to be as cool as possible in these meetings while still being aware if I got the assignment I was going to be able to work on something I’ve been dreaming of doing …
I mean it all eventually comes down to understanding the nature of what a given film is and making the characters people who you want to be as invested in as possible. I think in this case I’m not working from a whole cloth, right? So there’s a very strong structure from Gary’s work and that’s a huge advantage to me. But just like with Cinderella, it’s a director’s medium so it’s really about my making what Gareth needs to do his film … They need to expect everything because it’s Star Wars. They have to. If I don’t do that I’m failing in my job.”
The untitled Star Wars spinoff film is set to open Dec. 16, 2016. What do you want it to be about?