Gary Whitta took to social media today to share some intriguing concept art having to do with The Last Starfighter, and fans of the classic 80s movie are getting hyped. Whitta, who co-wrote the story for Rogue One, did not go into specifics about what exactly he is working on, but he did mention that he "shouldn't show" us this so early, which has led to speculation that a proper reboot for The Last Starfighter is in development. Whitta revealed that he is working on the project with his writing partner Jonathan Betuel, who wrote the screenplay for The Last Starfighter.
Gary Whitta shared 4 images that have ships that will be instantly recognizable to fans of 1984's The Last Starfighter. Whitta even slyly mentions that some people will know what they're looking at, and a quick glance at the comments section of the original tweet proves this to be wildly true. The artwork was completed by Matt Allsopp, who worked on Rogue One as well. Gary Whitta had this to say.
"Okay, probably shouldn't show you this so early but here's a little something I've been tinkering on with my co-writer Jonathan Betuel. You might recognize the ships. Thanks to the amazing Matt Allsopp (lead concept artist on Rogue One) for creating these images for us."
In February 2008, production company GPA Entertainment announced their plans to make a sequel to The Last Starfighter, simply called Starfighter. However the project got stuck in development hell, even with high interest from Steven Spielberg and Seth Rogen. At the time, Jonathon Betuel was not interested in a sequel. In 2015, it was announced that Betuel was working on a series revolving around the world of The Last Starfighter, but there hasn't been any news since then. Gary Whitta's concept art could be from the aforementioned series, but fans are hoping that it's a sequel or reboot.
The Last Starfighter was directed by Nick Castle and tells the story of Alex Rogan, an average teenager recruited by an alien defense force to fight in an interstellar war after getting the high score on the Starfighter arcade game. Ernest Cline definitely borrowed some of the magic from The Last Starfighter when he was writing Ready Player One. In Ready Player One, Wade Watts uses a line from The Last Starfighter as his password to log in to the OASIS, which is, "You have been recruited by the Star League to defend the Frontier against Xur and the Ko-Dan Armada." Alex Rogan also lives in a trailer park that is pretty close to the style of housing that Wade lives in. To take it one step further, it was announced this week that Ernest Cline's next book to hit the big screen will be Armada, which lifts the entire premise from The Last Starfighter completely. This could be way we're seeing this particular artwork so early, as these will be two competing projects with almost identical storylines.
Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg have been vocal about wanting to do a reboot of The Last Starfighter, and in a follow up tweet, Gary Whitta tagged Rogen. The excitement for the project is certainly there, but it's unclear where this new concept art will be utilized. You can check out the 4 images from The Last Starfighter project that Jonathon Betuel is currently working on below, courtesy of Gary Whitta's Twitter account.