This weeks Geek Roundup talks Lucas Museum, Domhnall Gleeson, and we touch on some more Star Wars rumors.
Chicago Gets George Lucas Museum
Star Wars creator George Lucas has chosen Chicago, Illinois over his native California to be the new home of The George Lucas Museum of Narrative Art. To be fair, the choice wasn’t entirely his. Earlier this year Lucas’s $700 million plans to build the museum on bay side parkland in San Francisco, not far from his native Modesto, was turned down by the Presidio Trust that owns the land. Though Lucas was offered another property in the area, he began considering other locations.
While Lucas has roots in the San Francisco area, his recent marriage to Chicago native and business woman Mellody Hobson has had him sharing his time between the Bay area and Chicago. The museum will be built on a site proposed by the city which currently houses the Shedd Aquarium and the Field Museum. The construction will include moving existing parking underground to make room for the new addition and is projected to be completed by 2018. The Lucas Museum website describes the project,
The Lucas Museum of Narrative Art will be a gathering place to experience narrative art and the evolution of moving images – from illustration to cinema to the digital mediums of the future. The museum’s seed collection – a gift from founder George Lucas – spans a century-and-a-half and features the images and the mediums that have profoundly shaped our cultural heritage. The foundational collection will continue to grow and evolve as the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art acquires more works.
Jedi Are Wizards Too
Domhnall Gleeson is a Tony award nominated actor, writer and director, though he is most well known for his role as the eldest Weasley child, Bill, from the Harry Potter series. Gleeson is trading in his wand for a spot in the Star Wars universe but in solidarity with his former wizard pals, he was in Florida this month for the Media and VIP preview of the newest additions to Universal’s Wizarding World. While rumors abound about who Gleeson’s character might be, he’s keeping the Star Wars VII secrets and told People Magazine “I can’t say anything.” Rumors as to who he might play include the son of Luke Skywalker, and while there has been no official word the presence of a beard on his normally clean shaven face hints to the strong chance that he may be a Jedi. Star Wars history has shown us that Beards = Jedi.
Also in attendance was Star Wars original cast member and fellow former wizard Warwick Davis, who played the ewok Wicket when he was just eleven, and several roles in the Potter films. Davis recently visited the Star Wars set at Pinewood Studios, where much of Potter was also filmed, and when asked about it he responded much like his characterization of himself on the HBO show Life’s Too Short,
“It was exciting going to Pinewood,” he said. “There’s a big sign on the wall that says ‘Episode VII Filming Now.’ What a wonderful thought that everybody’s back together, the classic cast and some brilliant new additions as well. I’m a fan anyway – I was back when I was 7. I would love to be in the new film. I’ve dropped a lot of hints!”
No word if the Ewok are part of the story line for the new Star Wars, but a Willow sequel would be wonderful.
Though a wise master once said “Impossible to see, the future is, ” it hasn’t stopped the mass of rumors flooding Star Wars fan sites and mainstream media.
This week, while Warwick Davis’ visit hardly raised any flags, the news that Tom Cruise had lunch with J.J. Abrams, who had directed the former in Mission: Impossible III, sent fans into a fluster. The rumor that Cruise would be given a cameo in Star Wars VII was received with hopeful disbelief and a slight tightening of a collective chest. While Cruise has box office clout, there is no doubt that his presence in the film would be akin to bringing back Jar Jar. Cruise has denied the rumors, allowing us all to breath a sigh of relief. It seems that sometimes lunch is just lunch.
Another Abrams rumor, started by Latino Review, has the director at odds with Disney CEO Robert Iger. The meat of the rumor is that Abrams and producer Kathleen Kennedy would like to push the films release date to May 2016, while Iger wants to keep the current December 18, 2015. With Harrison Ford’s injury and the fact that Abrams and Kennedy are doing their best to return to traditional special effects, employing the more time-consuming puppets and practical sets, one might think Iger would want to give the production the additional months if Abrams feels they are needed. Of course, this rumor has not been confirmed and may hold as much water as Tom Cruise wielding a light saber.
Lastly, Jeremy Smith at AICN reported this week that the story line of Star Wars VII features Han Solo leading a rescue search for Luke Skywalker. If this is the case then Harrison Ford’s injury might be setting the film back more than the studio is letting on, and could be why the first reluctant Ford has agreed to return to the Millennium Falcon cockpit. Again, none of these rumors have been confirmed or substantiated.
Come back next week as Geek talks to some of the Star Wars fans that are using the fandom to help bring balance to the force, and for the latest in Star Wars news.