Star Wars Episode VIII Has Started Filming, Young Han Solo Film in Pre-Production

Wednesday, 10 February 2016 - 2:39PM
Star Wars
Star Wars: Episode VIII
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Wednesday, 10 February 2016 - 2:39PM
Star Wars Episode VIII Has Started Filming, Young Han Solo Film in Pre-Production
Star Wars Episode VIII's release date has been delayed significantly, but production is apparently right on schedule, as Disney CEO Bob Iger just confirmed that filming has already begun.

Opening quote
"There is no better way to propel this franchise into the future than producing quality products," Iger said in a quarterly earnings call (via EW). "Filming of Star Wars: Episode VIII, the next chapter of the legendary saga, has just commenced and it will be in theaters December 2017. And production of Episode IX, a 2019 release, has also begun."
Closing quote

Episode VIII was delayed from May to December 2017, so we only assumed that production, which was scheduled to begin in January, was pushed off as well. But apparently it's full steam ahead, and filming has begun only a few weeks later than scheduled.

This makes sense, as production for the film doesn't seem troubled. The release date was reportedly only delayed as a result of the enormous success of The Force Awakens' December release, and for some "positive script rewrites," which primarily involved more focus on the unexpectedly well-received new characters, such as Rey, Finn, and Poe Dameron.

In addition to Episodes VIII and IX, several other Star Wars films are in the works, and right on schedule, including Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, which began filming in August and is nearly finished with production.

Opening quote
"Filming of Rogue One is virtually completed and we absolutely love what we've seen so far," he said. "This is the first of a set of planned stand-alone stories and we're already in preproduction on our next one, for release in May of 2018."
Closing quote

The "next one" to be released in May of 2018 refers to the Han Solo prequel film, which follows everyone's favorite rogue prior to the events of A New Hope. We suspected that the film was in preproduction, as Disney is already knee-deep in the casting process (although some hoped this was because he would make a cameo in Rogue One). After looking at thousands of actors for the part, Disney has reportedly whittled down to a shortlist that includes up-and-coming actors such as Miles Teller, Ansel Elgort, Dave Franco, Jack Reynor, Scott Eastwood, Logan Lerman, Emory Cohen, and Blake Jenner.

Star Wars Episode VIII hits theaters on December 15, 2017, while Episode IX is slated for sometime in 2019. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story comes out on December 18 of this year, and the Han Solo prequel film is scheduled for May 25, 2018.
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