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J.J Abrams confirms start date and shooting location for Star Wars Episode VII

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Some unlucky/lucky British costume designer will be plucking loose ass hairs from the tail-end of Peter Mayhew’s Chewbacca garb early next year, according to “Star Wars Episode VII” director J.J Abrams.

Okay, Abrams didn’t use those words, but it’s almost a certainty there’s going to be a few loose threads of cotton dangling from Chewie’s butt rug and the filmmaker has now confirmed that the film’s looking at an early 2014 start date.

Whining that he’ll have to go to the UK to shoot (“Poor Me, I’m having to be flown first-class to shoot in the beautiful United Kingdom – where I’ll be paid more money than any of you will ever likely see, and mix it up with the cast of one of the greatest film trilogies of all time, for a couple of months. Feel sorry for me”) Abrams, speaking at the 2013 ‘Produced By’ Conference, said the London shoot will be happening pretty soonish into the New Year.

“[W]hen I came into it,” he said, according to Coming Soon, who were in attendance, “there was already a pre-arranged thing for them to be shooting in England which, really does make me insane. I’ve never shot a movie outside the US or out of L.A… We are, most likely, if all goes ahead, going to be moving to London at the end of the year… There’s a whole lot of stuff happening at home. It’s not an easy thing.”

Abrams, who honestly does seem like a good fit for the film (despite displeasing a few peeps with the latest “Star Trek” movie – personally, I liked it), seems to have a good idea what needs to be injected into the next “Star Wars” flick – which takes place after the events of ’83’s “Return of the Jedi”.

“Talk about bigger than any of us,” he said. “That thing is so massive and so important to so many people. I know from seeing the first film when I was 11 what that felt like. I think the key in moving forward with something like this is in honoring but not revering what came before. There’s that deep feeling of infinite possibilities that I think was the ultimate thing I thought when I first saw ‘Star Wars’ which I would — and probably will — give my left arm to try and come close to again.”

Though only Mark Hammil, Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher are believed to have committed to the film, there’s suggestions out there that Billy Dee Williams has been approached to reprise Lando, Peter Mayhew will reprise Chewbacca, and that both Anthony Daniels and Kenny Baker are – not surprisingly – being brought back to do C3P0 and R2D2. Recently, “Tudors” star Jonathan Rhys-Meyers was rumoured to be up for a lead role in the film. Though a number of notable actors have expressed interest in being a part of “Star Wars Episode VII” since it was announced, including “Harry Potter” star Daniel Radcliffe, “Fringe” star John Noble, and “Star Trek” icon Leonard Nimoy, Abrams didn’t talk beyond the start and location date details at the event.

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About Caffeinated Clint

The writer/publicist/producer who wears the editor hat on Moviehole. Favorite films include "Say Anything...", "The Hunt for Red October", "Jerry Maguire", "Almost Famous", "Die Hard", "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo", "Young Guns", "American Psycho", "Back to the Future" and the "Star Wars" series.
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