Star Wars Land, Episode IX, Rogue One – A Great Day for Star Wars Fans

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Let’s cut to the chase, Saturday was a damn good day if you were a Star Wars fan. Disney’s D23 conference brought a lot of news to the Stars Wars Universe, so if you happened to miss out on everything here’s a recap.

  • Star Wars Episode IX Has A Director: The D23 news confirmed what was first reported at San Diego Comic Con this year — Jurassic World director Colin Trevorrow will be helming the next Star Wars film. Now to clarify this is Star Wars proper, and not Rogue One or any of the standalone. Trevorrow will be taking the directorial reigns from JJ Abrams once Force Awakens is completed. The rumored releases date for Episode IX will be sometime in 2013…so only four years to go.
  • The First Image of Rogue One Cast Drops: We knew some of the cast. We definitely know the director (Gareth Edwards). But it wasn’t until the full D23 news hit that we were fully confirmed on the details on Star Wars: Rogue One.  We’ve officially got a main cast, which can be seen in the picture below — Oscar nominee, Felicity Jones, Riz Ahmed (Nightcrawler), Diego Luna (Milk, Elysium), Donnie Yen (Blade II), and Jiang Wen (Let the Bullets Fly). Non-pictured cast include Ben Mendelsohn (Animal Kingdom), Hannibal’s Madds Mikkelsen, Oscar winner Forrest Whitaker, and Firefly’s Alan Tudyk, who’ll be doing a voice and motion capture character. Rogue One is set for release in December 2016.
Star Wars: Rogue One. Left to Right: Actors Riz Ahmed, Diego Luna, Felicity Jones, Jiang Wen and Donnie Yen. Photo Credit: Jonathan Olley ©Lucasfilm 2016
Star Wars: Rogue One. Left to Right: Actors Riz Ahmed, Diego Luna, Felicity Jones, Jiang Wen and Donnie Yen.
Photo Credit: Jonathan Olley ©Lucasfilm 2016
  • Star Wars Land Theme Parks Coming to California and Florida: The move that we non-Disney theme park aficionados did not see coming was the announcement of not one but two Star Wars themed amusement parks. They will be built at Disneyland and Disney World, and will be an extensive representation of the Star Wars universe. According to reports, Bob Iger, Disney’s Chairman & CEO, there will be thrill rides and even a replica of the Millennium Falcon cockpit. According to a report by Comicbook.com, Iger stated:

    “Every restaurant, building, everything will be inhabited by the aliens and droids you’d expect to find there. You’d expect to find a Cantina – and there will be one. You’ll have the chance to run into all the droids and fantastic beasts that Star Wars is known for. […] You’ll meet characters from The Force Awakens and more from the Star Wars saga. The land will have two fantastic signature attractions, including the ability to take the controls of the millennium Falcon on a customized secret mission. […] We are creating a jaw-dropping new world that represents our largest single themed land expansion ever. These new lands at Disneyland and Walt Disney World will transport guests to a whole new Star Wars planet, including an epic Star Wars adventure that puts you in the middle of a climactic battle between the First Order and the Resistance.”

So yes, a great day indeed for Star Wars.
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Bill Bodkin is the owner, editor-in-chief and co-founder of Pop Break. Most importantly, however, he is the proud father of a beautiful daughter, Sophie. He can be seen regularly on the site reviewing The Walking Dead, Doctor Who, and is the host of the site's podcast, The BreakCast. He is a graduate of Rutgers University with a degree in Journalism & English. Follow him on Twitter: @BodkinWrites