Kathleen Kennedy Talks the Story, Characters and Special FX in ‘Star Wars: Episode VII’

The producer and LucasFilm executive talked about the importance of finding practical locations and using real androids for this highly-anticipated sequel.
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Kathleen Kennedy Talks the Story, Characters and Special FX in ‘Star Wars: Episode VII’

Star Wars: Episode VII producer and LucasFilm president Kathleen Kennedy took the stage at Star Wars Celebration Europe yesterday, to discuss this highly-anticipated sequel. We also have a video interview with the producer and host Warwick Davis, where she discusses the pre-production process and much more. Take a look at the video, and read on for more details about her presentation at the event.

Kathleen Kennedy revealed that she is currently splitting her time between the LucasFilm and director J.J. Abrams' Bad Robot offices, where they are currently discussing the story and characters.

"The story and characters are all we're talking about right now. We have an amazing team at ILM, who can create fantastic effects, but if we don't have a great story and characters, the effects mean nothing. I do think making huge popular culture - and I've had the good fortune to be a part of a lot it - is really hard to do and get right. And if you don't spend the time you need on developing characters, and finding stories, complicated stories, the audience gets tired because they think they're seeing the same thing again and again."

The producer also talked about combining real locations and practical effects with Star Wars: Episode VII, much like the original trilogy.

"It's a conversation we're having all the time in the development of Episode VII. Looking at all the Star Wars movies and getting a feel for what even some of the early films did, combining real locations and special effects - that's something we're looking very seriously at. So we're going to find some very cool locations that we're going to use in support of Episode VII. And I think we're probably going to end up using every single tool in the toolbox to create the look of these movies."

When asked by panel host Warwick Davis what was in that toolbox, the producer gave this response.

"It's using model makers; it's using real droids; it's taking advantage of artwork that you actually can touch and feel. And we want to do that in combination with CG effects. We figure that's what will make it real."

In related news, Disney has registered domain names for StarWarsAttackSquadrons.com, SWAttackSquadrons.com, AttackSquadrons.com, and AttackSquadron.us. It is believed that these websites will be launched for upcoming video games that are being developed by Electronic Arts.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens comes to theaters December 18th, 2015.

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