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Screenwriter Simon Kinberg wants to make fans fall in love with Star Wars again

May. 6, 2013by: Alex Maidy

I have an image in my head of all of the staffers at Lucasfilm running around the office with papers flying around their heads as they try to get all of the pieces in place for the launch of the new regime at Disney that will begin their Phase One with STAR WARS: EPISODE VII in 2015. I am sure there has been a plan in place for longer than any of us realize for the new STAR WARS movies to be made and released, well before we heard the big news last year. With J.J. Abrams shepherding EPISODE VII, work is ongoing with the additional movies set to debut in 2016 and 2017. One of the screenwriters associated with those standalone projects is Simon Kinberg who gave some interesting thoughts regarding his place in the STAR WARS universe.

In an interview with Hero Complex, Kinberg discussed his trepidation at venturing into the revered annals of STAR WARS history despite previous work on franchises such as X-MEN and SHERLOCK HOLMES. Here are some of his thoughts.

On where progress stands right now on his screenplays:

Were really at the early phases of figuring out the details, but the spirit of the original movie is the thing I fell in love with, so its the spirit of that that I think will guide us.

On working alongside the other STAR WARS screenwriters:

Im not in the same category as Lawrence Kasdan and Michael Arndt. Its great to have a chance to work with those guys. Larry is really an idol of mine. He is, as much as anybody, the reason I wanted to get into screenwriting when I was a kid. Raiders and Empire Strikes Back were the two things that I saw when I was younger that I wanted to one day somehow emulate. So having the opportunity to be around him is as exciting as any aspect of the Star Wars process.

On focusing the new films on characters and storytelling:

[I agree completely]. I think what worked so well in all of the Star Wars movies is the characters. I think the reason that theyre different than other science fiction or other genre movies is because George [Lucas] created a universe of people that you wanted to go back and see over and over again, and thats why its spanned and spawned so many different mediums, so many different generations, every different language. You want to go back and see those characters, like I did when I was a kid. Empire Strikes Back was the first movie I saw in a movie theater more than once. And I went back 10, 15 times in the theater, and Ive seen it probably over a 100 times since. But I saw it that many times in the theater because I loved those characters. I loved Han, I loved Leia, I loved Luke, I was right at the age when I was old enough to start to understand the nuance of that movie. I think I was too young for New Hope when it came out in the theater, although I loved it and it was my favorite film until Empire. And then really, that changed my life, that movie.

While I am a big fan of X-MEN: FIRST CLASS and SHERLOCK HOLMES, Kinberg also wrote X-MEN: THE LAST STAND, THIS MEANS WAR, JUMPER, and MR. AND MRS. SMITH which aren't that great. I hope that Lawrence Kasdan's involvement will influence all of the other writers involved in the new movies, but it remains to be seen just what we can expect until the first footage appears of STAR WARS: EPISODE VII.

Source: ScreenRant

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1:13PM on 05/07/2013
if he wants me to do that, he should find someone else to write it.
if he wants me to do that, he should find someone else to write it.
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10:04PM on 05/06/2013
not gonna lie, i really enjoyed this means war. double post but ill say it again.
not gonna lie, i really enjoyed this means war. double post but ill say it again.
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10:03PM on 05/06/2013
not gonna lie, i really enjoyed this means war.
not gonna lie, i really enjoyed this means war.
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8:58PM on 05/06/2013
All the best to Kinberg, the fans are rooting for you. It's easy to blame a bad movie on the screenwriter, but the truth is a lot of terrible films begin life as halfway-decent scripts. So Jumper and X-Men: The Last Stand aside, I really hope he delivers something cool and I like the idea of teaming him up with Michael Arndt and Lawrence Kasdan. And ultimately, we're probably all grateful that Lucas isn't scripting the dialogue any longer.
All the best to Kinberg, the fans are rooting for you. It's easy to blame a bad movie on the screenwriter, but the truth is a lot of terrible films begin life as halfway-decent scripts. So Jumper and X-Men: The Last Stand aside, I really hope he delivers something cool and I like the idea of teaming him up with Michael Arndt and Lawrence Kasdan. And ultimately, we're probably all grateful that Lucas isn't scripting the dialogue any longer.
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7:49PM on 05/06/2013
"Were really at the early phases of figuring out the details"

George Lucas has been working on this for thirty years, ever since Return of the Jedi came out. He got sidetracked by the Special Editions and the prequels and the 3D conversions and he even said at one point that there wasn't going to be an Episode VII as if he himself had decided that his ideas weren't working. The negotiations with Disney obviously also went on for quite a while with Lucs figuring that a new Star Wars movie
"Were really at the early phases of figuring out the details"

George Lucas has been working on this for thirty years, ever since Return of the Jedi came out. He got sidetracked by the Special Editions and the prequels and the 3D conversions and he even said at one point that there wasn't going to be an Episode VII as if he himself had decided that his ideas weren't working. The negotiations with Disney obviously also went on for quite a while with Lucs figuring that a new Star Wars movie would probably cost upwards of $200 000 000 and he wasn't ready to invest his own money in something that could fail. Disney obviously felt the same way: apparently they preferred to give Lucas one billion dollars (or whatever it was) straight up and retain full rights to the franchise than give Lucas any money to make movies that could flop. Now the writers Disney hired are looking at what Lucas gave them and they say they are at the "early stages" which means that after thirty years Lucas had not come up with much.

Let's be honest: Star Wars was a good movie but, in retrospect, it was derivative of John Carter, martial arts and old wars movies (the desert setting, the sword play with light sabers and the dog fights in space, respectively). We all know that Empire was better written and we all know that Episodes VI, I, II and III could all have done with more input from other writers. I don't blame Lucas for wanting control: I imagine Lucas wasn't happy with how Empire turned out and that's why he had full control over the Prequels. I think the same thing can be said about Gene Roddenberry: the best Star Trek episodes were NOT the ones written by Roddenberry.
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6:34PM on 05/06/2013

He better not screw up...

He still owes me after X-Men The Last Stand. Him and Ratner have a lot to apologize for.
He still owes me after X-Men The Last Stand. Him and Ratner have a lot to apologize for.
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6:30PM on 05/06/2013

The guy who wrote X-Men: The Last Stand...

Even though I already knew he did...over time I've come to realize that the fault for that cinematic turd prob doesn't rest SOLEY on his shoulders....but on Tom Rothman, the #1 Fox studio exec..(.imagine THAT!) @ the time & Brett Ratner.

That being said, I have faith in this guys comments above. Sherlock Holmes & First Class are top-notch flicks (IMO) ..& Mr & Mrs. Smith & Jumper are guilty pleasures of mine.
Even though I already knew he did...over time I've come to realize that the fault for that cinematic turd prob doesn't rest SOLEY on his shoulders....but on Tom Rothman, the #1 Fox studio exec..(.imagine THAT!) @ the time & Brett Ratner.

That being said, I have faith in this guys comments above. Sherlock Holmes & First Class are top-notch flicks (IMO) ..& Mr & Mrs. Smith & Jumper are guilty pleasures of mine.
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+2
5:17PM on 05/06/2013

the guy who wrote jumper?...

JUMPER?!?! i mean, damn... i wish i hadn't seen that bit of info.
JUMPER?!?! i mean, damn... i wish i hadn't seen that bit of info.
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6:19PM on 05/06/2013
It's one movie you can't judge on one movie. We all fuck up once.
It's one movie you can't judge on one movie. We all fuck up once.
4:58PM on 05/06/2013
This is gonna be a tough nut to crack. Good luck to the team responsible.
This is gonna be a tough nut to crack. Good luck to the team responsible.
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6:20PM on 05/06/2013
Cookie? Not nut?
Cookie? Not nut?
6:59PM on 05/06/2013
edited.
edited.
4:53PM on 05/06/2013
Every interview I've read from Simon Kinberg makes him seem like a really nice, stand up guy. It's true that the four less than stellar films you mentioned were awful, but they were also plagued with their fair share of studio problems that I don't think Mr. Kinberg had anything to do with. I've been a Star Wars fan since I could remember, my Mother taught me how to read by using the opening crawls, and as lame as the prequels were it didn't diminish my love of the franchise one bit. I think
Every interview I've read from Simon Kinberg makes him seem like a really nice, stand up guy. It's true that the four less than stellar films you mentioned were awful, but they were also plagued with their fair share of studio problems that I don't think Mr. Kinberg had anything to do with. I've been a Star Wars fan since I could remember, my Mother taught me how to read by using the opening crawls, and as lame as the prequels were it didn't diminish my love of the franchise one bit. I think it's kind of hilarious that it seems like everyone involved in the new films seems contractually obligated not to reference Episodes 1-3 at all. Good for them, 2015 is going to be off the chain!
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+1
4:40PM on 05/06/2013
I have every faith that everyone involved will do their very best to make the best SW film possible. While I'm not the biggest SW fan, I can't help but be kind of excited. Everyone knows what happened with the prequels and everyone involved with this seems to know they don't want a repeat and really want to create a good SW film. Plus, Disney is a stickler for quality. Do they always get it right? No, of course not. But this is SW. And if there's one thing I can see Disney caring about it's
I have every faith that everyone involved will do their very best to make the best SW film possible. While I'm not the biggest SW fan, I can't help but be kind of excited. Everyone knows what happened with the prequels and everyone involved with this seems to know they don't want a repeat and really want to create a good SW film. Plus, Disney is a stickler for quality. Do they always get it right? No, of course not. But this is SW. And if there's one thing I can see Disney caring about it's this franchise. They do have to prove they can carry it, and I think they will. As for Kinberg, I feel like Disney knows what it's doing hiring this guy. Maybe not the greatest track record, but he's shown he can write a good film, and I am sure that if it's not of the highest quality, Disney will have to to get it there.
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5:10PM on 05/06/2013
Exactly my thoughts! :)
Exactly my thoughts! :)
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