Star Wars: Richard E. Grant Details the Secrecy of the 'Episode IX' Production

Star Wars: Episode IX will conclude the Skywalker Saga, making it one of the most anticipated films of the year. In hopes of protecting the film's many secrets, Lucasfilm is going to drastic measures to prevent any spoilers from going public, as detailed by series newcomer Richard E. Grant.

"It's extraordinary. They don't give you a script," Grant shared with Digital Spy. "You have to go to a room where there are bodyguards outside, closed-circuit television cameras, and it's printed on crimson pages so you can't photograph it. You have to read it in there, and then leave."

While this method of security can ensure no details leak before the film's release, it can make rehearsing a scene quite difficult. As you can imagine, Disney found a way to get around this obstacle.

"You're given the pages on the day that you work, and you have to sign for them and sign out for them as well," the actor clarified. "There are security guards on the set."

Advances in technology have added a new wrinkle to the secrecy around the production, as previous films merely had to compensate for cameras with impressive zoom lenses. The popularity of drone cameras means the cast and crew now have to be wary of visitors overhead, which, as you can imagine, Disney also has protocols for.

"They give you a cloak, over your head – because apparently they have drones going over Pinewood Studios so they try and take photographs of what people are playing," Grant explained.

These comments echo what franchise star Mark Hamill shared last year, comparing the interest in the films now to what it was when it was first being developed.

"I remember back when I read the first Star Wars [script], I was like, ‘Wow, that’s the goofiest thing I’ve ever read.’ I gave it to my best friend to read, and I said, ‘What do you think of it?’ He said, ‘It’s really wild, it’s crazy, can I give it to Meredith?’ ‘Sure, go ahead,’" Hamill recalled to Entertainment Weekly. "It went around to all my friends. Of course back then nobody cared. Nowadays it’s like working for some secret deep state government organization, like being in the CIA. They’re going to send rewrites over to Prague on this dark red paper that gives you a headache to read.”

With Hamill being such a key figure in the Star Wars saga, he's allowed to use a physical script, while many other members of the cast are only ever given digital versions of the script that can't be duplicated. Even still, Hamill being exempt from having to settle for an electronic script meant having to follow other protocol.

“I like to make notes, little cartoon drawings in the margins to help me visualize it … whatever you have to do to help remember it,” the actor shared. “You can’t do that in electronic form, it’s so impersonal. I’m old school and long for the days of paper scripts. They wound up letting me keep a script when we were doing [Star Wars: The Last Jedi], but I had to lock it up in a safe every night and then carry it with me and never let it out of my sight. And I can understand why — if [a script] gets out it ruins it for everyone.”

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Fans will find out all of the film's secrets when Star Wars: Episode IX lands in theaters this December.

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