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SDCC 2015: STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS Panel Recap

Posted by Hoob on July 10th, 2015
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There are only two panels that people will really be talking about when Comic Con is over, Tomorrow’s WB panel and The Star Wars: The Force Awakens panel. Moderated by Chris Hardwick, The panel started with Kathleen Kennedy, J.J. Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan.

After showing some new images of StormTroopers with flame throwers and a crashed tie fighter, they brought out Bobba Jo, the practical effects monster from the Omaze video. That led to all on the stage talking about the importance of their use of practical effects and how they wanted to make sure you “You can feel that those are real weapons and those are real stormtroopers back there.”

When asked about how he could hope to meet fan expectactions, Abrams said: “When you’re directing a scene on the Millennium Falcon, that doesn’t make it good…it’s storytelling 101…You can’t be blinded by [your feelings about the original trilogy]. I can’t wait to show you the movie.”

As to how continuity will be laid out, Kennedy told fans:
““VIII and IX will be part of that saga, but production is beginning on the standalone movies.”

Then, they apologized for not bringing a new trailer before the lights go down and video starts playing of Mark Hamill talking about the practical effects and then Simon Pegg on the set of the film.

Here’s the Video:

Following the video, cast members John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, and Oscar Isaac appeared on stage. Boyega talked about how awesome being at Comic Con was and that he repeated his trick from Celebration and walked through the convention floor in a clone trooper helmet.

Regarding the rigorous training, Daisy Ridley said that it was amazing and she was really hoping that the it pays off on the screen.

Drawing a connection to A New Hope, Oscar Isaac said that his character is carrying on the legacy of Han and Luke. He went on to say: “Po was probably watching the medal ceremony saying, ‘I want to be a hero.’”

In response to a question from a fan involving the casting of Asian people, Abrams had this to say: : “There are Asians in this film. The truth is we didn’t write the character of Finn to be any color, we didn’t write Rey to be any color. They just went for the right actors.” and when the subject of transmedia storytelling, something they’ve been trying really hard to do with the new films, he said: “We’re just working really hard to make a movie and tell a story…if we thought of it as an IP, it would be a very different film.”

On working with the original cast, Daisy Ridley said: “Working with the legends…was everything we could’ve hoped for and more.”

Next on stage is Adam Driver, who was not part of the panel at Star Wars Celebration. He’s then followed by both Domhall Gleeson and Gwendolyn Christie.

On his connection to the dark side, Adam Driver said that he didn’t approach the role in terms of bad or evil, but then Gleeson interjected with: “I am evil, he is British.”

Christie then remarked at how exciting it was to be a woman underneath the armor and how that makes the film even more relevant than ever.

Gleeson says that his character is in charge in some ways and then Abrams backed him up by revealing that his base is called “Starkiller.”

Then, with the fans cheering, Carrie Fisher took the stage and the first question she was asked was how it felt for her to come back and see it all real again. In response, she had this to say: “It was like a flashback…I didn’t think it was going to happen again. There were times the three of us were standing together and it was hard to observe what was actually happening.”

Then, Hardwick brought Luke Skywalker himself, Mark Hamill out onto the stage. He immediately starts to tell the audience how important the fans are and that he’s very moved when he hears from them. With that, they introduce Harrison Ford, who walks onto the stage to huge applause.

When asked how he’s feeling and if he’s doing OK, he replied by telling fans: “I’m fine, he says. I walked here.” He then went on to tell fans “It felt great…the original Star Wars was the beginning of my working my life…so it was great to be back. Thank you.”

With that, Abrams surprised the entire audience by telling them that they would all be walking over to a live Star Wars concert - and the crowd went nuts. The end.

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