Official Info Lucasfilm Confirms: Michael Arndt To Write Screenplay For Episode VII

Discussion in 'Star Wars: Episode VII - Spoilers Allowed' started by Diggs, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. Diggs Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 31, 2012
    star 4
    I think there is a case for arguing that GL has lost a sense of what makes SW connect for audiences, otherwise you might not have had the backlash after the PT.

    Remember, this is perhaps one of the few people on the planet that thinks Han should shoot first, or that Vader's "noooo" was a welcome or needed addition to ROTJ SE.

    Either that or his lack of talent as a screenwriter and director was exposed.

    Working in the industry myself, I've very rarely met anyone that thinks GL did a good job on the PT. Even the man himself admits that he is not a good screenwriter. And the key thing to get right on any movie is the script. All the PT scripts read like rough drafts. Had Arndt or any number of writers taken those and rewritten to keep the essence of GL's ideas, the execution would have been much higher. You only need to look at the early drafts of the OT. All those GL drafts read like the PT. Yes he wrote SW, but GL had people like Kurtz and Marcia to keep challenging him and he also had to get the script approved by the studio (not always a bad thing). Not to mention that Willard and Hyuck polished a lot of the dialogue.

    SW has always worked best with talented collaborators bringing out the best of GL's vision. I'm hoping that will again prove to be the case here.
    Last edited by FinleySlade, Nov 10, 2012
  2. The-Eternal-Hero Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 3, 2012
    star 4
    Lucas does better action than Bay ever will.
  3. ThatWanFromStewjon Jedi Grand Master

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    Oct 8, 2012
    star 4
    I agree that Lucas wouldn't be a match for Shakespeare in the writing department but I disagree in regards the scripts importance in Star Wars.

    For Lucas, the important part is the visuals and the story (not screenplay or script, just story) and he has always said that.

    But the dialogue is meant to invoke the old Flash Gordon type hokey serials (allegedly the character Lucas originally wanted to film).

    People seemed to think that the scripts of the OT are something spectacular - their not. They are cheesy and hokey. Just ask Harrison Ford.

    And I don't just mean ANH.

    To say Lucas doesn't understand his own creation is arrogant and foolish.

    The man made the movies he wanted and told the story he wanted to tell.

    That he didn't make a fanboy film is a credit to him.

    And if you know anything about Lucas, you'll know the reason he has handed over the reigns to someone else - he so lives the universe he created that working on Star Wars movies affects his health - he gets that engrossed in it.

    I'd prefer a Star Wars movie written and directed by Lucas to anything thing else and I wish he could continue.

    However, I'd much rather the guy stayed healthy and gets to spend time with his family.

    Laters.
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  4. Jango_Fett21 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 9, 2002
    star 3
    That's an entirely subjective analysis. I've long felt that Lucas' vocal detractors have let their nostalgia over what they perceived the OT to be and their own perceived entitlements when it came to the OT to unfairly criticize Lucas for choices that they disagree with. The PT is no better or worse than Episodes IV, V, and VI, and this is coming from someone who is of the generation in which those three films were released (I was born in November of 1980, the year that TESB was released, and first discovered that film - followed by ANH and RotJ - on my 8th birthday). Any genuine flaws that Episodes I, II, and III have are also present in Episodes IV, V, and VI, and any objective analysis of those films would reveal that.

    Lucas has made some plot and story changes to Episodes IV, V, and VI which, on the surface, do seem unnecessary, but, as a fan, I also recognize that, while they might not make sense to me, they certainly do to George, whose word is god when it comes to the SW franchise and always will be even though he has now sold both his company and the rights to the franchise and brand. Because my own personal opinions have absolutely no bearing on the series, nor should they, I'm not going to criticize Lucas for making some decisions that I, personally, would not likely have made. To paraphrase C-3PO, 'he (Lucas) has made some fair moves; complaining about it won't help us'.

    Regarding the PT, the first film in the trilogy, The Phantom Menace, was, in the end, a victim of its own publicity. Even if the film had been a collaborative effort between George and others, it still would've fallen short of the lofty expectations that people held for it because there was in fact absolutely no way that it could've met said expectations, and the unwarranted backlash against it because it failed to live up to the ridiculous amount of hype surrounding it in turn negatively affected the perceptions of AotC and RotS, which, qualitatively, are on par with ANH (AotC) and TESB (RotS), respectively.
    Last edited by Jango_Fett21, Nov 10, 2012
  5. Diggs Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 31, 2012
    star 4
    I didn't say he didn't understand his own creation, just that he had perhaps lost a sense of how to make that connect for the widest audience. And it's setting up a straw man to suggest that wanting a better script means you are a fan boy.

    I'm also not sure about what you're suggesting about his reasons for handing over the reigns. I think it was primarily a business decision. Clearly he's handed it over to Kennedy who will take great care of the franchise so I'm sure he cares.

    Personally I think we'll see better SW movies now he's not so involved. Had the PT been written and directed by others (but still based on his vision), I'm convinced the PT could have been every bit as good as the OT, if not better.

    Still, I appreciate that everyone holds different opinions and not everyone thinks that there were problems with the PT so each to their own! I agree, it's a largely subjective debate, but nostalgia and expectations aside, I don't think it's possible to argue that the PT has as widely loved as the OT. I doubt that would be the case if, objectively, they really were as good. But that's just my opinion. I mean no disrespect to those who feel differently and I can't back it up beyond my own views.
    Last edited by FinleySlade, Nov 10, 2012
  6. The-Eternal-Hero Force Ghost

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    Nov 3, 2012
    star 4
    I also think it is necessary to understand analytic criticism: in his day, Shakespeare was criticized, there are actually some surviving "bad reviews" of his plays, indeed, the only period reaction to A Midsmummer Night's Dream we have are two negative "reviews"! Was that the Bard's Phantom Menace?

    But even today there are scholars who contend that Titus Andronicus, Cymbeline, Coriolanus, among others, are bad plays, possibly not written by ol' Bill S. 'cause Hamlet & King Lear are so dang good. There's also been evidence for centuries, in plain ol' black & white, that Shakes had co-writers, especially at the end of his career, but critics, being what they are, give all of the credit or all of the blame to Shakespeare, 'cause he's the one with the big target painted on his chest.

    So I take criticism of Lucas's work with a grain of salt. There are things I don't like out there, it doesn't mean they're worthless. Far too much credence has been given to critical opinion in our time. We have to remember: it's the job of a critic to have something to say, and they're usually busy either building up heroes or tearing them down.
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  7. Jango_Fett21 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 9, 2002
    star 3
    The PT is just as good, if analyzed objectively and without 'nostalgia glasses', as Episodes IV, V, and VI; aside from an overall shift in tone between the two trilogies, there are no significant differences, qualitatively, between any of the films in the PT and any of the films in the OT. TPM is, qualitatively, on par with Return of the Jedi, AotC is, as previously mentioned, qualitatively on par with ANH, and RotS is, as previously mentioned, qualitatively on par with TESB.

    Having been around these boards for as long as I have been (under various different usernames), I can unequivocally tell you that the negative feelings towards the PT amongst the fandom have been greatly exaggerated.

    BTW, I didn't think I was suggesting anything regarding Lucas selling his company and the rights to SW with what I posted. What I said was that, even though he no longer directly owns the rights to Star Wars, he still remains the 'ultimate authority' in terms of the franchise and was well within his rights as both a filmmaker and storyteller to make the changes he made to the story of Episodes IV, V, and VI, even if we, as fans, personally disagree with those changes. Our opinions, in the end, do not matter, and vilifying George because we disagree with the decisions he made and believe that our opinions ought to matter is, ultimately, futile and childish.
    Last edited by Jango_Fett21, Nov 10, 2012
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  8. Diggs Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 31, 2012
    star 4
    I should also add that having strong visuals and things like character and story shouldn't be mutually exclusive. I certainly don't think the PT is worthless and there are parts and elements I enjoy. I guess the main thing is, if the movies work for you that's great, and that's all that will matter with the ST.

    EDIT : I strongly disagree that the PT is as good as the OT, regardless of nostalgia. I agree GL could do what he liked to those movies. Equally, as a fan, I can choose to disagree with some of those choices. It doesn't make me any less a SW fan neither does it make anyone childish.

    And I think anyone who thinks that the general feeling towards the PT is not more negative than towards the OT, is kidding themselves, sorry.
    Last edited by FinleySlade, Nov 10, 2012
  9. Jango_Fett21 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 9, 2002
    star 3
    That's a subjective opinion, then, because there are no fundamental differences between any of the films qualitatively.
    JainaSoloYJK likes this.
  10. The Hellhammer 7SA Forum Interrogator

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    Nov 4, 2012
    star 5
    Hahah, oh give me a break...
    Last edited by The_Hellhammer, Nov 10, 2012
  11. Diggs Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 31, 2012
    star 4
    No, I think that if you objectively dissected and contrasted the films, the OT would fare significantly better. Subjectivity goes both ways. Just because someone likes the PT as much, if not better than the OT, doesn't make it objectively so either. I'm sure some of my feelings are nostalgia based or personal taste and there is lots to enjoy in the prequels, whilst there are also flaws in the OT but I think as a whole, the execution is off more often in the PT than in the OT.

    Anyway, I think I'm in danger of derailing so if anyone wants to keep debating those particular issues, lets take it to DM.
    Last edited by FinleySlade, Nov 10, 2012
  12. The-Eternal-Hero Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 3, 2012
    star 4
    I'm not sure George has changed as much as the world around him has. Everything is so segmented, there isn't really a "general audience" anymore, and if you look at the films that succeed at that level, they're usually pretty empty and void of any quirks or personality at all. I enjoyed the heck out of "Avengers" but it's a pale, pale reflection of ANH, which broke rules all over the place and was still fun, exciting, and successful. On his own, GL is not going to make something that vanilla. Even his most commercial films are, frankly, pretty bizarre compared to the other commercial films of their time.

    But I don't disagree that SW turned a corner with TPM. There comes a point in long-running works, whether they are novels, comics, tv series, whatever, where the creator becomes interested in annotating, correcting, clarifying, explaining and exploring. The intense desperation to reach an audience is gone, since they know the audience is waiting; the burning desire to unleash all their pent-up thoughts and feelings also fades, since they've probably already said what's most important to them. Lucas reached that place with the PT. For me, it was fun, interesting, and stimulating; for a lot of ordinary audience members, not so much, they just wanted to laugh, cry, and cheer.

    Lucas reached a crossroads and the man decided to let SW live on. But there's no way they'll pick up right where the PT & TCW leave off creatively, because those stories are addendum to an already huge and complex work, a 6.5 hour movie. I don't have any doubt that GL appreciates this, and that KK will use all of her resources to create something that really does connect with a wider audience. Because it needs to be done.

    I personally love "late works", I love books with copious footnotes and backnotes, I love trawling through indices searching for things, I am immersed in the literature of the "mythological" and love to delve into the language, history, and anthropology of that stuff. So GL Phase 2 was natural for me. But I'd like to see SW hit it out of the park again and really reclaim the throne. 'Cause, in all honestly, all this other stuff that's tryin' to be SW -- it's inferior. It's time to take back what is ours ;) to quote a teen queen.
  13. awesomejedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2012
    star 3
    Hurray! I loved TS3!
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  14. Diggs Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 31, 2012
    star 4
    I think it's a very valid point that the world has also changed and that GL had different ares he wanted to explore in the PT. Fair play to him, I just think his (sometimes overwhelming) ambition may have outreached his skills as a writer and director.

    I also think that by the time the PT came around (and to be fair probably by the time of ROTJ) he was distancing himself from those who would challenge and filter his ideas. So that by the time you get to the PT, it's pure unfiltered GL, just as the original drafts for the OT were.

    For some, that's perfect. For others not so much. I totally agree that it would be great to see them knock 7 out of the park. This probably won't happen but it would be great if the new trilogy could work for pretty much everyone.

    Right now, I think there is an amazing buzz of excitement and optimism that I really hope is cemented by three great new SW films.
  15. Jedi Merkurian Episode VII Thread-Reaper and Rumor Naysayer

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    May 25, 2000
    star 6
    Merging speculation with confirmation.
  16. The Hellhammer 7SA Forum Interrogator

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    Nov 4, 2012
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    It would...but it won't. Reading some posts on these boards, it is really ludicrous what people say and complain about. I don't think they'll ever all be happy at the same time about the same thing.
    We get what we thought until a short while ago was impossible - a new Star Wars movie!


    And then a sizeable portion of people emerges and any sort of change is frowned upon, any fresh and new idea is met with reflex-like bashing and people are clamoring for mainting the status quo of their highly distorted personalized nostalgic views of what Star Wars should be.

    I for one am very looking forward to the new movies, the new approach and the new people involved. The world has changed and people should accept that Star Wars should evolve with it.


    And what you say about Lucas distancing himself from anyone who would provide criticism...yeah, that's one of the problems. There was no one to say "No" or to at least ask him to reconsider some other options. And it shows.
    There's a transcript on the net of Kersh directing the scene in ESB where they freeze Solo, that shines quite a light on how much everyone actually improved upon the base that Lucas provided. There was obviously no one to do that in PT, and it shows.
    Last edited by The_Hellhammer, Nov 10, 2012
  17. Diggs Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 31, 2012
    star 4
    Yeah, watching Kersh and the crew on some of those newly found BTS vids was fascinating.

    As you say, it's just damn exciting that we're getting a new trilogy. I can't wait. And to have a talented scribe like Arndt onboard gets me even more excited. I think these new films are going to learn the various lessons from both OT and PT and take the whole saga forward in thrilling fashion. Bring 'em on!
    The_Hellhammer likes this.
  18. WhiskeyGold Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 4
    What is this talk about a July release date? Is it official.
  19. Diggs Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 31, 2012
    star 4
    I think it was in one of the articles confirming Arndt as writer.
  20. TheMasterOfSoresu Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 23, 2011
    star 1
    I enjoyed Toy Story 3 so I'm optimistic.
  21. Darth_Xeres Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 3, 2010
    star 2
    EDIT: Oops, this is not the right thread for director speculation... Anyway, I'm glad Arndt has been confirmed.
    Last edited by Darth_Xeres, Nov 10, 2012
  22. WhiskeyGold Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 4
    Ok it wasn't on the StarWars.com release so I take it as rumor. I bet they stay with the May release like the others.
  23. WhiskeyGold Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 4
    Google search only finds this "Star Wars: Episode VII opens in the UK on 17 July 2015." But it's from some site but nothing official. IMDB has this date but that's all I can find. Looking for more info some tweet it as news on my sw7 tweeter
  24. Norminator Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2009
    star 1
    Very nice. The more I learn about him, the more confident I am in this choice.
    The SW future is looking just a little brighter.


    Get outta here.
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  25. WhiskeyGold Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 4
    Hear a lot of talk about Toy Story 3 but has everyone forgotten Little Miss Sunshine!