On June 30, filmmaker Kevin Smith launched the now /star-wars-episode-vii-set-visit-brings-director-kevin-smith-to-tears/infamous photo of himself crying just moments after walking away from the set of Star Wars: Episode VII at Pinewood Studios in the U.K. He's still not allowed to talk about what he actually saw being shot in too much detail, but he is revealing the true meaning behind those tears as he let loose on his meeting with director J.J. Abrams, talking in detail about it for the first time this weekend.
Kevin Smith was at the Neuchâtel International Fantastic Film Festival in Switzerland on Saturday, where he chatted for over an hour with the crowd, devoting more than 11 minutes to his recent vacation in that galaxy far, far away, describing the world that is being set up by J.J. and why it will mean so much to fans when they finally get to see it on the big screen in 2015.
"J.J. Abrams had sent me an email out of the blue while they were shooting in Abu Dhabi last month. So we go to the set and they're actually shooting, and they're shooting -- and this is what I can't tell you what they were shooting -- But what I saw I absolutely loved. It was tactile, it wasn't a series of f---ing green and blue screens in which later on digital characters would be added. It was there it was happening. I saw old friends who I haven't seen since my childhood, who aren't really friends, but I love them more than some of my fucking relatives. I saw uniforms, I saw artillery that I haven't seen since I was a kid. I saw them shooting an actual sequence in a set that is real -- I walked across the set, there were explosions -- and it looked like a shot right out of an f--ing Star Wars movie."
Kevin Smith also reveals that he got to visit Stage M, where the Millennium Falcon is housed. He was allowed to step inside and walk around the iconic spacecraft piloted by Han Solo and Chewbacca.
"He turns the lights on and there is the Millennium Falcon from my childhood. Now the ship outside looks like a movie set, but the inside, fully replicated, fully built. The guy told me, they took two blueprints: Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope and Empire, because the cockpit in Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back was bigger than the cockpit in Star Wars. So they went somewhere between the two. So he takes me over and I'm just looking at it. You look at it from the outside and you can still see inside. I don't presume we're going aboard or anything, and then Morgan (J.J.'s assistant) says "You ready to go up?" I said (excitedly) "We can go on it?!
As I walked up that ramp I realized that the something that was missing from those other movies (the prequels) and its now in these movies. And its not the obvious like hey the Millennium Falcon or hey the characters that we know are returning. Its something else entirely."
He continued describing the experience of being on set, and what is being done in the U.K. Here's the real reason he was brought to tears:
"[J.J.] is building a tactile world, a world you can touch. And he's replicating with all the love of someone who has the world's greatest collection of Star Wars figures. And when you walk on that set man, I don't know how else to describe it except thusly: you use another pop culture reference to describe this pop culture phenomenon. Its like the field of dreams, the Kevin Costner movie. And if J.J. builds it, we're all going to come hard, because its amazing. It looks fantastic. So anyone out there wondering if he's going to pull it off, he's pulling it off. He showed me cut scenes, he showed me sequences, images, pictures. I cried and I hugged that guy. And I'm sure as I was crying and hugging on him that he was thinking "time is money" because they're making a movie. But he got it. He was very flattered. And I was like "Honestly dude, you're doing it. You're making my childhood again. You're doing our Star Wars. What I saw, blew me away."
You can watch the full video in the embed below. The Star Wars: Episode VII set visit discussion begins at the 35 minute mark and goes on for nearly 11 minutes.
If you missed it, here is Kevin Smith's teary eyed photo from last week: