As if "Star Wars" geeks haven't already had enough excitement recently, Zack Snyder is developing his own "Star Wars" film, apart from anything Disney has planned with its purchase of Lucasfilm. Disney has already announced plans to reboot the series.
The Los Angeles Times reported in November that Snyder, who directed "Man of Steel" and "300," had no interest in directing the hotly anticipated seventh film in the "Star War" series. But according to Vulture.com, the statement was a bit of misdirection: Snyder is in fact developing a separate Star Wars project for Lucasfilm.
A well-played bit of misdirection, Mr. Snyder. Well played, indeed.
Reports say Snyder's film will be an as-yet-untitled Jedi epic loosely based on Akira Kurosawa's 1954 classic "Seven Samurai," with the ronin and katana being replaced by the Force-wielding knights and their iconic lightsabers.
Some of us who are old enough can remember that one of the first 1970s "Star Wars" comic books was based on the same idea. You're not fooling us, Mr. Snyder.
It's not clear where Snyder's untitled Jedi film would fall within the Star Wars chronology, but one insider said it won't be considered part of the "numbered" episodes, but rather a stand-alone film set sometime post—Episode VI events, meaning the next phase of the franchise development is much broader than previously thought.
This might be too much for the geeks to handle. Even I'm starting to get faint chest pains.
Kurosawa's influential "Seven Samurai" ("The Magnificent Seven" was the American remake) concerns a small agrarian town in 16th-century Japan that's routinely pillaged by bandits. Fed up with the annual shakedown, its farmers retain the services of seven masterless samurai to defend their harvest.
One of the film's stars, Toshiro Mifune, was initially offered the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi, reports say. George Lucas has cited the classic as one of his favorites, telling U.K. paper Telegraph in 2005 that "it's a brilliant, brilliant film, and every time I see it I can't believe the magic mixture of a great story and great acting and humor and action and suspense -- wonderful cinema. The art of moving pictures is on every frame of this movie."
In October, Disney CEO Bob Iger announced the acquisition of Lucasfilm. He said that after Episode VII, "our long-term plan is to release a new Star Wars feature film every two to three years." Disney has not found a director yet for "Episode VII."
Vulture reported that Snyder would start production after Disney begins its planned 2015 release of "Star Wars: Episode VII." Disney has not commented on Snyder's plans.