Now that the Force has awoken, meet the Resistance…from its beginning: Join the Rebellion!
From where the story picks up in Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens the evil Empire was obviously not defeated at the conclusion of the Battle of Endor. The destruction of the second Death Star, a weapon of such dangerous potential, the Rebel forces have gone to great length to learn the secrets of the battle station at great cost to their cost. That particular story is going to be further explored in the upcoming spin-off feature film Star Wars: Rogue Squadron which will reveal the sacrifice made by a small band of pilots.
The Rebellion’s cause is still much in effect when we reconnect with what is now dubbed The Resistance and leading the march is General Leia Organa. The Empire may have been dealt a killing blow (more than once during the course of its regime) but even once Darth Vader and the Emperor have fallen, splinter groups have been brought together to form the latest threat to freedom and democracy in the galaxy: The First Order. Forged under the dominance of a single mind — a Supreme Leader — who rules as a tyrant and is preparing to crush the New Republic.
The set up for the next trilogy is of course in full swing as the Resistance must work to find the missing Jedi Master Luke Skywalker and find a way to restore balance to the Force. Star Wars Creator George Lucas put great emphases on the Force and what it represents in his universe — The Force is a mysterious energy source that binds us all together; it penetrates us and has a command to a certain extent on our destinies. When the Force is thrown into flux, and the evil Sith take control of power, it leads to the rise of the Empire and the path to the Dark Side.
A small band of freedom fighter begin to push back against the oppression of the Empire and soon the Rebellion is born! Star Wars Rebels follows those freedom fighter as they forge alliances across the galaxy and resist the evil of the Empire. Their story continues and is further explored by the time that we join our established heroes in Episode IV – A New Hope but in the meantime, not that Season 2 of Star Wars Rebels is fully in play and the threat of Darth Vader is being felt all across space, we’ll take a look at the series and how it impacts the mythology certainly playing into the expanded universe.
With the Force hitting theaters again the soundtrack is still leading the march and inspiring all movie goers.
A long time ago… | You may have heard…there’s a new Star Wars movie opening in theaters across the country (and all-around the world) this week. Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens is the next chapter in a series of new films, the first part of a new trilogy, and the first film under the new regime move under Disney. George Lucas very lucrative sale of his franchise to Disney has guaranteed that the “House the Mouse built” is now the most powerfully funded film studio in Hollywood.
Undoubtedly The Force Awakens will break all expectations at the box office, and the reviews have been more than favorable for J.J. Abrams relaunch of one of the most beloved film series in cinematic history. Under new Lucasfilms head Kathleen Kennedy it has been promised that this is only the beginning in an imperial-sized onslaught on entertainment, that includes spin-off series starring Rogue Squadron, Boba Fett and even a young Han Solo.
For the moment, film fans are focused — all of their attention is laser-sighted on Episode VII. The much anticipated sequel that takes place 30 years after the events of Episode VI – The Return of the Jedi reunites the heroes from the original trilogy and introduces a new generation of characters that will now propel the story forward as a new threat faces a galaxy far, far away.
No Spoilers Ahead (Really) | Though they claim that George Lucas is only peripherally associated with the (re)launch and the continuation of the saga, one returning creative that has also left an indelible mark on the legacy of Star Wars is film composer John Williams. The relationship between Williams and the major blockbusters of the last four decades is one of mutual symbiosis. There are some that might suggest that without John Williams there could be no Star Wars.
For Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens the composer was once again enlisted to recreate the iconic symphonies that instantly transport movie-goers to the Outer Rim and back. Although this chapter of the saga will no longer open with the support of the characteristic 20th Century Fox films fanfare, it nonetheless begins with the familiar high octave notes as the title appears on screen.
As the title crawl begins to introduce the prologue for this adventure it instantly moves into the establishing shot as “The Attack on the Jakku Village” begins. The story begins on a planet, not unlike Tatooine in Episode III a mostly desert planet where a bold, young Resistance pilot named Poe Dameron is on an important mission. Sent by the General of the Resistance forces, Dameron has been entrusted to find the missing piece of a map that will lead to Luke Skywalker, the Jedi Knight and hero of the battle against the tyrannical Empire.
To introduce the new heroes of this exciting new chapter, Williams has taken notes from the original trilogy to give much deserved weight to a new generation of rebels. When “Rey Meets BB-8” the droid carrying the missing map piece, the symphony runs in many parallels to the theme that establishes Luke as the hero of the first trilogy. “I Can Fly Anything” has the same excitement that was often in the background of the daring escapes made infamous by the space smuggler Han Solo.
With The Force Awakens now preparing to carve its own legacy thanks to John Williams it resonates with the power that gave the original series of films the gravitas to become the cinemas greatest space opera.
Star Wars…the space saga that inspired a movement is about to ignite a new era of storytelling in filmmaking as movie audiences return to a familiar territory, with new excitement!
Every generation has had its own imaginative explosion! Whether it was the life journey of a boy wizard, a rebellious archer moved to incite change, or a lost girl from Kansas who just wants to get home after following a twister into a magical land. All these flights of fancy share a common vision — a heroic journey — a pattern that can be traced to a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away.
Back in 1977, when George Lucas introduced moviegoers to the wide-eyed adventure-seeking Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) he couldn’t have imaged that his small-budget, effects heavy space opera would become the near religious experience that four decades later is still drawing so much attention. Star Wars as it was simply entitled then broke all expectations at the box office, and its subsequent sequels followed suit.
Lucas had always said that the story which prominently featured our hero Luke Skywalker and a band of rebels that battled to free the galaxy from the tyranny of an evil Empire, were only the beginning of the tale. The original trilogy’s villain Darth Vader (David Prowse and voiced by James Earl Jones) became one of the modern film era’s most iconic antagonists though the character would be redeemed by the series climax.
Although a “Special Edition” revisiting of the Original Trilogy wooed fans back into the theaters — Lucas’ enhanced versions of the original films included additional scenes and advanced CGI technology to extrapolate more of the original narrative — audiences would have to wait until 1999 for the promised “prequel” series that further explored the downfall of Anakin Skywalker (a young Jake Lloyd played Anakin as a boy).
Actor Hayden Christensen played the fallen Jedi Knight that would become the Lord of the Sith, Darth Vader and the role of the mother of the Skywalker twins went to Academy Award Winner Natalie Portman who played Padmé Amidala — who embodied the rebellious spirit that is evident most in her daughter Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher). At the conclusion of Lucas prequels, it was clear that Star Wars was here to stay.
Handing the keys to his company to long-time producing partner Kathleen Kennedy may’ve proven the franchise’s greatest move since securing the plans to the Death Star. After selling his company to Disney for a near mint, Lucas bestowed upon Kennedy the outline for another series of films which pose the question: Who is Luke Skywalker? And with that the next trilogy was born.
Plans for Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens were confirmed on April 29, 2014 when the first cast and crew picture from the first script read through was released by the film’s new director J.J. Abrams. Though at first reluctant to take on the Star Wars franchise, Abrams was the most likely and intellectual choice to set the gears in motion, after all the filmmaker had reinvigorated another space epic Star Trekwith great flare!
“I wanted to feel that thing I’d felt when I was a kid watching this movie.” — J.J. Abrams in Time Magazine
Poised now for its premiere, the next chapter in the epic battle between good and evil and the complexities introduced regarding the balance of the Force — an energy source that binds and penetrates us all, The Force Awakens is prepared to break all box office records and anticipation for a Star Wars renaissance is at a fever pitch! Along with the next trilogy about to begin, spin-offs are already in the works.
At the center of The Force Awakens are a trifecta of heroes. The desert scavenger Rey (Daisy Ridley), the fallen soldier Finn (John Bodega) and the resistance pilot Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac). They will be joined by the original trilogy’s cast of heroes including Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and his trusted co-pilot Chewbacca, and fans are happily waiting to embrace the lovable new droid BB-8 who joins R2-D2 and C-3PO.
At this writing there is very little known about the film’s plot; most of it is speculation, but everyone is keenly aware the among the original cast Mark Hamill was the most reluctant to accept that a new film was in production, and when he finally agreed to get in on it, it looks like his character Luke Skywalker is all-but missing from all the new episode’s ad campaigns.
How Luke will play into the adventure is still be seen, but fans can be assured…the Force has indeed been awaken and Star Wars is once again at the fore of our imagination. It’s a story that will resonate yet again with an entirely new generation, and it couldn’t have come at a better time, when hope is really a fleeting notion we must all accept and learn to embrace. The Force is strong.