Star Wars: Episode 8 is reportedly in trouble, with news emerging that the film has been rewritten to focus on the characters from Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
The monumental success of The Force Awakens, which is likely to become the second highest grossing film of all time by the time its box office run comes to an end, means that changes are now being made to Episode VIII, which is likely to push production back a tad too. In fact, it's start date has been pushed back to February 2016, instead of January.
It's long been rumored that Star Wars: Episode VIII will introduce two brand new female characters to the mix, but now Lucasfilm have asked writer/director Rian Johnson to reduce the role to smaller parts.
Rumor: 'Star Wars: Episode 8' Is Getting a Slight Rewrite in Response to 'The Force Awakens' Reactions https://t.co/gRMWsNvM8gThis assertion was made by Jeff Sneider, a reporter for The Wrap, who made it on the Meet The Movie Press podcast. Sneider also insisted that Lucasfilm are considering an Asian actress for the role of one of the new women too.
— 94.5 KATS (@945KATS) January 20, 2016
After stating that Jane The Virgin's Gina Rodriguez hasn't got the part, it was also teased that British actress Bel Powely is no longer in contention. Sneider explained, "Now I am told Episode VIII has been pushed about a month. Rian Johnson is going to do another rewrite, and I heard an Asian actress got the role Bel and Gina were up for. But I don't know if the Bel Powely thing will work out."
Sneider continued, "I said before there were two young female roles, now I actually heard that the rewrite will make these roles smaller. They want to get to know better the characters they already have. So have the new rewrite is shrinking the new roles in order to spend more time with Rey, Poe, and so on."
While this news is still obviously speculation, it would kind of make sense. That's because there is still so much that we don't know about the likes of Rey, Finn, Poe Dameron, and Kylo Ren, all of whom fans will be eager to learn more about.
Plus, The Force Awakens fans will also be hoping that more information about Andy Serkis' Supreme Leader Snoke is unveiled, while, obviously, we can expect to see much more of Luke Skywalker too.
This isn't the only Star Wars rewriting news that has emerged over the last 24 hours though. In fact, the still shooting Rogue One has apparently brought on one of Hollywood's most successful writers to fix these issues.
Star Wars: Rogue One script "saved" by Mission Impossible director. https://t.co/XlWXNZBPo8 pic.twitter.com/TvjjqxNyvILatino Review were the first outlet to report this story, insisting that Lucasfilm have brought in Christopher McQuarrie to tighten up the screenplay for Rogue One. McQuarrie most recently wrote and directed Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation, while he previously helped to fix World War Z, which needed its entire final act to be re-written. He also won the Academy Award for his writing on Usual Suspects too.
— GameSpot (@gamespot) January 19, 2016
But while these stories might lead many to assume that both Star Wars: Episode VIII and Rogue One are in trouble, the frequency of rewrites in Hollywood means that no one should be in the slightest bit concerned with this news.
Especially since McQuarrie is actually the fourth writer to have worked on Rogue One, following on from John Knoll, Gary Whitta, and Chris Weitz.
We've got just under a year to wait and see if the film has merged their work together perfectly, because Star Wars: Rogue One is due out on December 16, 2016. Meanwhile Star Wars: Episode VIII will be released in May, 2017.
[Image via Lucasfilm]