Features

'Star Wars Episode VII': A New Hope (Really)

Luke, Leia, and Han are back! (and guess who talked them into it.) The inside story of director J.J. Abrams’ quest to return cinema’s greatest space saga to its roots.

Image credit: facebook.com/starwars

The Star Wars cast and crew

Look homeward, Skywalker. We never thought we'd get back to this galaxy so far, far away — and even if we did, we never expected them to be waiting for us: Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, and especially the itinerant rogue Han Solo. No world revolves around one person, but at its core the Star Wars universe has always hinged on these three. The Beatles never played together again. The original Ghostbusters are now a thing of the past. And E.T. won't be phoning us anytime soon. But Star Wars…Star Wars is now getting an encore. How in Hoth did that happen? The first glimmer came in October 2012, when the Walt Disney Co. bought Lucasfilm for $4 billion and announced that a new trilogy — picking up after the events of 1983's Return of the Jedi — would be heading to theaters. J.J. Abrams, who had relaunched the Star Trek franchise for Paramount, signed on to direct in January 2013, and Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher declared that they'd be open to coming back. Even Harrison Ford, who had spent the past three decades throwing shade at the space saga, didn't immediately balk. Word spread that the new film would take place 30 years after the fall of the Empire, sparking hope that the veteran stars might return. And then...silence.

Look Homeward, Skywalker. We never thought we'd get back to this galaxy so far, far away — and even if we did, we never expected them to be waiting for us: Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, and especially the itinerant rogue Han Solo. No world revolves around one person, but at its core the Star Wars universe has always hinged on these three. The Beatles never played together again. The original Ghostbusters are now a thing of the past. And E.T. won't be phoning us anytime soon. But Star Wars...Star Wars is now getting an encore. How in Hoth did that happen? • The first glimmer came in October 2012, when the Walt Disney Co. bought Lucasfilm for $4 billion and announced that a new trilogy — picking up after the events of 1983's Return of the Jedi — would be heading to theaters. J.J. Abrams, who had relaunched the Star Trek franchise for Paramount, signed on to direct in January 2013, and Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher declared that they'd be open to coming back. Even Harrison Ford, who had spent the past three decades throwing shade at the space saga, didn't immediately balk. Word spread that the new film would take place 30 years after the fall of the Empire, sparking hope that the veteran stars might return. And then...silence.

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