Last week a picture was teased from behind the scenes of Star Wars: Episode VII. In the picture were director JJ Abrams, producer Kathleen Kennedy, the worlds favourite droid, R2-D2, and two unknown men. Now those men have been revealed, and R2-D2 has been confirmed to be returning for the new Star Was film (as if we hadn’t already come to that conclusion!).
The two guys in the picture (below) are Lee Towersey and Oliver Steeples, members of a worldwide organisation known at the R2-D2 Builders Club. Take a guess at what members love to do! The picture showed Abrams and Kennedy stood with a Artoo unit built by Towersey and Steeples. After a chance meeting with Kennedy at this years Celebration Europe event in Germany, the pair were offered a job working on the creature effects team for Star Wars: Episode VII. Naturally, the pair will be responsible for building, and maintaining the R2-D2 unit for Episode VII.
“We know the pressures of filming, prepping, and being able to assure reliability throughout the shoot,” says Towersey. “We have a good knowledge of Artoo, with a large stock of parts for reference and drawings, plus we know what is involved throughout the whole building process, as well as potential problems we need to avoid.”
Towersey also spoke of building a better Artoo unit: “We’re currently in a research and design phase where we’re looking at drive options for reliability on all possible terrains, whether it be a one-motor-does-all, or a system which is easily adjusted depending on terrain. We have a few mocked up ideas which we hope to road test very soon.”
Disney’s official announcement about the release date for Star Wars: Episode VII:
With pre-production in full-swing, a confirmed release date of December 18, 2015, has been set for Lucasfilm’s highly anticipated Star Wars: Episode VII.
“We’re very excited to share the official 2015 release date for Star Wars: Episode VII, where it will not only anchor the popular holiday filmgoing season but also ensure our extraordinary filmmaking team has the time needed to deliver a sensational picture,” said Alan Horn, chairman of The Walt Disney Studios.
Star Wars: Episode VII will be directed by J. J. Abrams (Super 8, Mission: Impossible III, Star Trek)and is being scripted by Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan (Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi). Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy, J.J. Abrams, and Bryan Burk are producing, with Tommy Harper (Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, Jack Ryan, Star Trek Into Darkness) and Jason McGatlin (Tintin, War of the Worlds) serving as executive producers. John Williams is returning to score Star Wars: Episode VII.
Shooting is scheduled to begin spring 2014 at Pinewood Studios.