'Return of the Jedi' 30 Years Later: New 'Star Wars' Film to Follow Up 1983 Classic

Wednesday, 19 Mar 2014 12:12 PM

By Ken Mandel

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In a galaxy far far away, "Star Wars: Episode VII" will be set 30 years after its last installment, 1983's "Return of the Jedi."

Disney revealed Tuesday that the storyline of the upcoming film takes place about 30 years after the events of "Jedi," where the rebels destroyed the second Death Star. Lucasfilm, which was acquired by Disney in 2012, also announced that the studio will start principal photography in May, ahead of the movie's anticipated 2015 release.

Director J.J. Abrams is helming the newest installment of the intergalactic franchise, and rumors have swirled online about whether "Star Wars" icons Harrison Ford (Han Solo), Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia), and Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker) would return for "Episode VII."

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"The only character I know for sure is returning is my friend R2D2," Hamill said in January in an "Ask Me Anything" Reddit interview. "He hasn't stopped beeping about it."

Fisher was less evasive, telling TV Guide in January that she would join Ford and Hamill in the spring to begin filming.

"I'd like to wear my old hairstyle again — but with white hair," Fisher said. "I think that would be funny."

The film will also reportedly star "a trio of new young leads," Lucasfilm said in Tuesday's statement. Variety reported that the newcomers are Ed Speleers of "Downtown Abby," British actor John Boyega, and Jesse Plemons of "Breaking Bad."

In February, Variety also reported that Adam Driver, a featured actor on the HBO series "Girls," was close to an agreement to play a villain similar to Darth Vader in the blockbuster.

The movie is scheduled to hit theaters Dec. 18, 2015.

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