Hasbro Staff Knew About That Big Star Wars: The Force Awakens Twist Two Years Ago

Thursday, 09 June 2016 - 11:37AM
Star Wars
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Star Wars: Episode VIII
Thursday, 09 June 2016 - 11:37AM
Hasbro Staff Knew About That Big Star Wars: The Force Awakens Twist Two Years Ago
Have you ever had to keep a secret as part of your job? Perhaps you overheard a major piece of office gossip, or perhaps there was a company reshuffling that you had to play dumb to until it happened? Well, imagine the pressure that comes with keeping such a secret and intensify it by about a thousand, because that's what it probably felt like to be a key member of staff at Hasbro a couple of years ago.

A new interview with Bill Rawley, a production design manager over at Hasbro's Rhode Island HQ, shows the envious level of advanced insight some folks outside of Disney get when it comes to the big Star Wars projects. Last Christmas, jaws around the world were hitting the floor as one of the great Star Wars twists unfolded before moviegoers eyes. It was a shock to many of us, but not to the people responsible for designing the toys that generate millions of dollars in revenue for Disney and Hasbro.

Rawley reveals that members of the Hasbro staff actually get to read through the scripts of big Star Wars releases in an effort to ensure their creations are up to scratch.

Opening quote
"We do get information really early and we'll send team members out to Disney to do script reads so that we understand stories so that we can put our toys in context with the story and we cannot share any of that information with anyone," Rawley tells Tech Insider. "Even internally in the building, designers and people on other groups, we can't really talk to them about it. It's on a need-to-know [basis]. If they're working on products that are influenced by the story, we'll let them know some story elements but a lot of times we don't even share the full story with the rest of the teams because they don't need to know that Han Solo doesn't make it through the movie."
Closing quote

The pressure that comes with knowing such secrets must be immense. Over the years, the stars of Hollywood's big movies have admitted the weight of pressure that comes with their roles, and Rawley reveals it poses similar challenges for Hasbro's creators.

Opening quote
"For example, and spoiler alert if you didn't see 'Episode VII,' Han Solo's death, I knew that for two years and I couldn't tell anyone, not even my wife," Rawley explained. "When that scene happened in the movie theater with my wife she just turned and looked at me and said, 'I can't believe you didn't tell me.' I was kind of in trouble," he joked. "It was the third time I'd seen the movie, the first time I saw it with my wife. So, I didn't even watch the scene. I just turned and looked at her instead because I wanted to see her expression."
Closing quote

But, for Rawley and his team, the pressure isn't going away any time soon. With Disney's huge expansion of Star Wars storytelling, the Hasbro team are working on a seemingly never-ending stream of Star Wars merchandise. And yes, they do already know all the secrets held within the Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and Star Wars: Episode: VIII scripts.

Opening quote
"We have another movie coming out this December, 'Rogue One.' And then, next year, there's 'Episode VIII. So, we're actually working on 'Episode VIII' stuff right now. We're excited about some of the newness we're bringing into the products of that. It's going to be fun."
Closing quote
Science Fiction
Sci-Fi Movies
Star Wars
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Star Wars: Episode VIII

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