Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
The Future Of Film
The 100 Greatest Video Games
Robin Williams: The Big Interview
Kevin Feige:
My Movie Life

The Marvel supremo's pick of the flicks
Want To Be An Empire Journalist?
Find out how here
Movie News

LATEST HEADLINES
YESTERDAY
Liam Neeson Is Up For Suspension
Based on Joss Whedon's long-in-gestation script?
Fox Announces Deadpool Movie For 2016
Tim Miller still attached to direct
More Movie News

RELATED NEWS
18 September 2014
Rian Johnson Talks About His Star Wars Experience So Far
'It's the most fun I’ve ever had writing...'
More Movie News

RELATED FUTURE FILMS
Star Wars: Episode VII
18 December 2015
More Future Films

RELATED REVIEWS
Super 8 (2011)
Empire Star Rating
Regarding Henry
Empire Star Rating
Filofax (1990)
Empire Star Rating
More new cinemas releases
DVD & Blu-ray releases

Kathleen Kennedy Talks Star Wars
On JJ Abrams and George Lucas

31 January 2013  |  Written by Phil de Semlyen  |  Source: The Hollywood Reporter

submit to reddit

Star Wars logo

With news of JJ Abrams' recruitment to the helm of the new Star Wars still reverberating through fandom, The Hollywood Reporter sat down with producer Kathleen Kennedy for an in-depth chat about the newest Disney franchise, its director, and her working relationship with George Lucas.

First up, the recruitment drive. "JJ was just on the ceiling when I walked out the door," Kennedy remembered of the three-hour covert meeting she and her writers held with Abrams on December 19. The director had "very genuine concerns" about the impact a potentially overseas-based production might have on his family, not to mention the sheer pressure of piloting the Star Wars universe. "If there was any pause on JJ's part", said the producer, "it was the same pause everybody has - including myself - stepping into this. It's daunting."

Abrams, for his part, testified to those early reservations, and to the persuasiveness of Kennedy's sales pitch. "I learned first-hand how incredible and persuasive she is," he told THR. "The thing about any pre-existing franchise... I'd sort of done that. But when I met with Kathy, it was suddenly very tantalising."

Lucas's shadow, of course, still looms over the thrillingly rebooted franchise, albeit from a distance. In Kennedy's parlance, he's a Jedi knight offering sage advice and the filmmaking equivalent of mind tricks. "I call him my Yoda," she said. "He'll be a consultant. But he recognises he's stepping away. It took a lot for him to [do that]. And the fact that he turned it over to me - I think, 'Oh my God, I have a huge responsibility to him.' He did say, 'You just do what you do.' I said: 'OK. I'll figure out what that is'."

Here's Empire's thoughts on why Kennedy is already making the right calls.


Have Your Say
To comment on this, and all articles, register for free or login now.

Exclusive: New Poster For Side Effects
Soderbergh's latest gets serious
David Goyer Enters The Breach
Update: He's now set to direct as well as produce

Your Comments

PLEASE LISTEN TO LUCAS, ABRAMS!
The prequels made clear Lucas is fucking awesome. All his inputs are what made those films fantastic. Quite simply hateboys seem to have forgotten what Star Wars is all about (hint: it doesn't shitty puppets & rapey assholes shooting first). So I pray that he is kept at a very, very, very close to this. Here's hoping Kennedy is listening closely to him. Imagine what would have happened if Luke listened to the Emperor (the hateboys) instead of Yoda (George Lucas). More

Posted by NeoBrowser at 02:09 on 01 February 2013 | Report This Post

PLEASE DON'T LISTEN TO LUCAS, ABRAMS
The prequels made clear Lucas has lost it. All his inputs were to the detriment of the films. Quite simply he seems to have forgotten what a good Star Wars story is (hint: it doesn't involve trade embargo debate). So I pray that he is kept at a very, very, very long distance from this. Here's hoping Kennedy is just paying lip service to him. More

Posted by launcelot at 20:23 on 31 January 2013 | Report This Post

2016 release date?
I'm not holding my breath, especially after the disaster that were the prequels (I, II, II). Wake me up when the first trailer arrives. More

Posted by nybras at 17:38 on 31 January 2013 | Report This Post

"JJ was just on the ceiling when I walked out the door." JJ should direct the next Spiderman flick with those abilities, not Star Wars. More

Posted by BenTramer at 16:17 on 31 January 2013 | Report This Post

SPECIAL FEATURE
The 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time EMPIRE READERS' POLL: THE 301 GREATEST MOVIES OF ALL TIME
You turned out in your hundreds and thousands, and here are the results... Browse the full list


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
The Future Of Film: The Streaming Services Will Be Major Studios
(Or how Hollywood will have to start worrying about Netflix)

The Empire Podcast #129: Liam Neeson Interview
Plus Max Irons, Sam Claflin, Douglas Booth, Holliday Grainger and Jessica Brown Findlay drop by to talk The Riot Club

The Future Of Film: We'll Be Watching Films In Virtual Reality
Immerse cinema aims to become the must-have experience for the filmgoers of the future

The Future Of Film: Cinema Will Cross The Uncanny Valley
The future of VFX, from believable digital humans to underwater mocap

The Future Of Film: There Will Be Another Indie Golden Age
Independent producers are growing from micro-budgets to something a lot bigger

Empire's Epic Interstellar Subscribers' Cover
The countdown begins to Christopher Nolan's sci-fi masterpiece

Shut Up, World! Gary Busey Is Talking!
Strap yourselves in and meet a true Hollywood original.

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get 6 Issues Of Empire For Only £15!

Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month!

Subscribe today

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save maney on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Get 6 issues of Empire for just £15!
Get the world's greatest movie magazine delivered straight to your door! Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)