Do you need to know every detail about “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”? How about just the running time? These past few days, you may have seen some rumors about the length of the film from U.K. fan blogs. Well, they may be correct. ScreenCrush says they have confirmed the rumored “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” runtime as 2 hours and 16 minutes. That wouldn’t make it the longest “Star Wars” movie — that title belongs to “Star Wars: Attack Of The Clones” which runs 2 hours and 22 minutes — but let’s hope it’s at least a tiny bit more interesting.
Elsewhere, word of late is that Disney is beginning to push a big diversity mandate for all their films now that social media has ushered in an age of positive social awareness (i.e., the world rightly complaining about a lack of diversity on screen). We’ve seen that desire already coming to fruition with J.J. Abrams’ ‘The Force Awakens’ which features three new leads: a female (Daisy Ridley), an English-African actor (John Boyega) and a Hispanic actor (Oscar Isaac). And evidently — perhaps not so coincidentally after the controversy surrounding “Star Wars Episode IX” director Colin Trevorrow‘s comments about directing inequality earlier this year — apparently there’s a desire to get diverse behind the camera as well (the new “Star Wars” universe has been criticized as all the directors hired for their new films so far are white males).
And so Lucasfilm chief Kathleen Kennedy said herself hiring a female for one of the spin-off films is the goal. “There’s nothing we’d like more than to find a female director for Star Wars,” she told The Guardian this week, noting that six of the eight people helping to develop the new “Star Wars” film have been female. That’s great and all but Lucasfilm should name names because so far the people revealed in the “Star Wars” brain trust include Kennedy, Abrams, Simon Kinberg, Lawrence Kasdan and maybe to a lesser extent Simon Pegg. “Having a balance of men and women in the room changes the story,” she said. “The dialogue, the point of view.”
“There is an assumption made that the people involved should predominantly be men. There are women who are Star Wars fans. That’s what’s so insane,” she said. A range of girls’ T-shirts had done “unbelievably well,” she added.
Kennedy also revealed, perhaps not too surprisingly as the character is one of the leads, that the character Rey, played by Daisy Ridley is “extremely significant” to the story but refused to reveal more details, insisting: “I don’t want to spoil the story.”
Side note: if she is Luke or Leia’s daughter that is boring writing and too obvious and you guys should have come up with something else. Rant over. Meet The Movie Press folks also said that F. Gary Gray just met with the Lucasfilm camp, but he’s already taken on “Furious 8,” so that’s not going to happen, but it indicates that desire to not just have white male filmmakers in the director’s chair.
“It’s a lot to do with opportunity and there has to be a concerted effort to create the opportunity,” Kennedy said. “Part of our job is to nurture talent. We need to not go to a filmmaker who’s done one movie and expect them to come in and do something the size of Star Wars without having an opportunity to find other movies they can do along the way.”
Will we see a multi-colored world in the “Star Wars” universe in the future? It looks like that foundation is already being laid down so fingers crossed if you care about that sort of thing (cause you should).
Also, we have confirmed ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ runtime as 2 hr. 16 min.
— ScreenCrush (@screencrushnews) October 14, 2015