Lawrence Kasdan, the Star Wars' screenwriter behind The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, the soon-to-be-released The Force Awakens and the upcoming Han Solo anthology film, chatted with the Los Angeles Times about his latest projects.
First off, Kasdan isn't concerned with how much Star Wars: The Force Awakens makes. He knows people will come out in droves to see it and it will end up somewhere on the all-time list of highest grossing films. "What does matter is, do we feel good about it and do we think we fulfilled those things we set out to do? I've seen it six or seven times, and I feel very good about that," Kasdan shared with the L.A. Times. "When this movie starts, you just can't believe how dynamic and fun it is. I don't know anybody who can resist who's slightly open to it. [Director] J.J. [Abrams] just knocked it out of the park."
Kasdan had a lot of praise for J.J. Abrams. The two were able to hammer out a first draft of The Force Awakens in six weeks. "He's a really decent guy, and he makes movies the way I try to make movies," Kasdan says of J.J., "which is that it's a privilege to make a movie and no one should be miserable."
He also brings up the two directors that will take on the next two films in the trilogy as well as the directing duo helming the Han Solo spinoff. "These movies will all be so different," he explained. "["Episode VIII" director] Rian Johnson is a friend of mine — he's going to make some weird thing. If you've seen Rian's work, you know it's not going be like anything that's ever been in "Star Wars." You couldn't have three more different people than J.J., Rian and ["Episode IX" director] Colin [Trevorrow]. Those movies will have the "Star Wars" saga as their basis, but everything else will be different. Then Phil Lord and Chris Miller are going to make the Han Solo film and I can't guess what that will be like — and I'm writing it!"
Kasdan is writing the Han Solo spinoff movie with his son Jon. Han is Lawrence's favorite Star Wars character, the one he most enjoyed writing dialogue for, but is it easy to write for a younger version of Han? "I think so," he offered. "You know, he's younger in this [spinoff] movie and that's fun because you have to imagine him 10 years earlier in his early 20s. What was he like before he hardened up? Before he had some setbacks? Before he put on this cynical coat? What got him there?"
The film stars Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew and Max Von Sydow. Kathleen Kennedy, J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk are producing with Tommy Harper and Jason McGatlin serving as executive producers. The screenplay is by Lawrence Kasdan & J.J. Abrams and Michael Arndt.