Over the past few months, we've reported multiple times that Star Wars: Episode VII will begin shooting this May at Pinewood Studios in London. Today, we have a new report from Badass Digest that reveals shooting is actually scheduled to begin in Morocco for the first two weeks of production, starting May 14.
The site speculates that director J.J. Abrams may also be heading across the African continent to Tunisia, which George Lucas used for the Tatooine scenes in the original Star Wars trilogy. There were also portions of the first three films that were shot in Morocco, with several of the sets left abandoned in the desert, one of which was captured in 2012 by photographer Ra di Martino, showing a beggar on the deserted set, which you can see below.
There are also abandoned sets in Tunisia, with a recent campaign being launched entitled Save Mos Espa to preserve these sets before more damage is done to them. Earlier this month, we reported that Star Wars: Episode VII is set 30 years after Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi. There is speculation that J.J. Abrams may return to these locations to show how the planet of Tatooine has changed so much in this time frame. Of course, as with any Star Wars: Episode VII information, nothing has been confirmed by Disney or LucasFilm , including the production start date in Morocco.
It's also worth nothing that May 4 is "Star Wars Day" (May the 4th Be With You), so it's possible that Disney and LucasFilm are saving all of their big casting announcements for that special day.