Star Wars: The Force Awakens faces a seemingly impossible task, introducing a new generation to a galaxy far, far away, while living up to expectations of franchise fans who have been around from the beginning. If a key source close to the production is correct, however, then J.J Abrams and Disney may have accomplished the impossible.
Following his recent unveiling of the Force Awakens poster art at the D23 Expo in Anaheim, California, artist Drew spoke to Movie Weekly about his involvement with the franchise. Despite the series’ high profile, many important plot points remain under wraps, and much of what we’ve gleaned about the story actually stems from Struzan’s recent work on the new poster art – such as the fact that Finn (John Boyega) will wield a lightsaber at some point. It was while speaking about the movie overall, though, that Struzan revealed his opinion of the work, saying,
I’ve never worked with J.J [Abrams] before and so we started working on it and he showed me like half the movie and it was just… a wonderful film and I know it’s going to be grand. I got to read the script and subsequently I’ve seen half of it and I can tell you and the fans this, Honest to god, it is far and away probably going to be the best Star Wars you’ve ever seen.
Drew Struzan has a long working history with Lucasfilm, responsible for the creation of classic poster art for every Star Wars film dating all the way back to 1977 – as well as those of the Indiana Jones franchise. His work has become iconic, and what comes to mind for many when they think of the sci-fi film series. Essentially, when he says something about a Star Wars movie, we can often safely assume that he knows what he’s talking about.
That being said, it’s important to note the limitations of even his exposure to the project. Having only watched roughly half of the film’s run-time – along with having read the script – he does not necessarily have a complete enough picture of the overall film to make that kind of assessment. Plus, it is just one guy’s opinion.
We must make sure to temper our expectations, as numerous other films have received similar early praise from those close to the production – see: Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice – but that does not necessarily mean mainstream audiences will respond to the finished film with the same level of unabashed enthusiasm.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens will in theaters on December 18th, and we'll be keeping Drew Struzan's comments in mind when we finally get the chance to see it.