J.J. Abrams has a very good understanding of what made the very first Star Wars film, A New Hope, work. Right from the start, that film had mystery after mystery, and took you on a ride. It answered some questions while raising more.
Watch this video from a Ted conference a few years ago, called The Mystery Box. It’ll give you a very good idea of what drives the stories that Abrams tells, and what’s behind the choices he makes. In it, you’ll also see a scene that he considers to be one of the greatest scenes of all time, from the movie Jaws. And it’s not a scene that people normally think of when they think about that movie.
J.J. Abrams is directing Star Wars: Episode VII
What many considered to be an impossible situation has actually happened. J.J. Abrams has quickly become one of my favorite directors, having created some of my favorite TV series, and actually did the impossible: got me to watch a Star Trek film based on his name alone. And I’ll be watching my second Star Trek film with his second film in the series: Star Trek Into Darkness. I have heard that he’s signed on for three Star Trek films, so I’m pretty sure that after he completes work on Episode VII, he’ll likely meet up with his writing team to start scripting and ultimately direct Star Trek III.
This is something that I never thought would happen. When the Star Wars prequels came to an end, it was pretty common knowledge then, that George Lucas was done with Star Wars films. Back in high school, I would talk with friends about how there would eventually be nine films. Now it’s happening, and there is more planned after that.
There has been a lot announced since Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm was announced on October 30, 2012. Nothing specific about the stories yet, but I’ll write more about what the stories mean for the expanded universe in another entry in this series.
Who is writing Star Wars: Episodes 7, 8 and 9?
Within the past couple of days, people have been slamming The Hobbit film. Not for the content, though, they seem to love that. They’ve been talking about the speed at which the film is displayed: 48 FPS. Until now, that hasn’t been possible to display at a movie theater. Until now, and for the last 90 years, all movies have been projected at a mere 24 frames per second.
It’s a leap forward in technology.
Something weird is happening, though. The negative reaction to the 48 FPS is because it is “too realistic.” But since when has that been a problem for people? People to want their video game graphics to be as realistic as possible. I’m one that doesn’t care what the game looks like, as long as it’s fun to play. I love a beautiful looking video game, but I think that the SNES and up is fine as far as graphics quality. But more often than not, people talk about how great the graphics look, and that’s what they’re looking for in a video game. People also buy the latest and greatest in HD TVs, Blu-ray Discs, and even Apple is touting the graphical display capabilities of the new iPad (3rd Generation).
And when our movies look better, we’re suddenly against it?
“Indeed, the footage was vivid, with grass blades, facial lines and soaring mountains appearing luminous and pronounced. The actors looked almost touchable, as if they were performing live on stage.” (CBS)
That sounds FANTASTIC to me. I want to see that. That sounds magical. That sounds like what movies should be. Completely immersive.
One of my favorite movies of 2011 was The Muppets. They’ve just announced a sequel, officially. Director James Bobin and writer Nicholas Stoller are set to return behind the camera, and it’s going to be a caper.
Walter, the new Muppet from the first film, will also appear in the cast. Jason Segel may cameo but his character’s story arc is complete so it’s not likely that he’ll be returning in a leading role.
I’m very hopeful that the sequel will continue what the first film started, having recaptured the magic of the early Muppet films in a way that we haven’t seen in many years, and many attempts by the Henson studios.