Could you imagine if J.J. Abrams had the chutzpah to film a blockbuster as high-profile and eagerly anticipated as Star Wars: Episode VII in broad daylight, in extreme public, where any Joe Schmoe with an iPhone could record "practical" effects on the runways of a German airport?
Yeah, the YouTube clip that caught fire over the July 4 weekend is fake, fake, totally fake, so very fake that we’re surprised a handful of news outlets ran it with the possibility of it being real. No, YouTube user Frank Wunderlich (maybe Bob A. Fett was taken) simply played around with visual trickery while shooting footage of the Frankfurt Airport to suggest that J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: Episode VII would have scenes on our planet. You know, with transportation buses sharing the runways with AT-AT Walkers. This is pretty hysterical.
The effects in the clip, however, are impressive. Wunderlich zooms in on crafts as they hover over the airport’s runways, and pays close attention to the shadows that would be cast on a sun-soaked day such as this. Yet, while we know that J.J. Abrams is constructing practical effects, sets and props for use in Star Wars: Episode VII (as evidenced in the video below), the idea that his production crew would be able to build these massive creatures and parade them around in the middle of the day really makes me chuckle.
So yeah: "Leaked" Star Wars footage that is totally fake, but just impressive enough that it’s actually worth sharing.
Thankfully, there was more than enough legitimate Star Wars: Episode VII news breaking over the weekend to make up for the fact that we don’t have set footage to share. The overly enthusiastic Kevin Smith was allowed on the set of J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: Episode VII, and shared what he witnessed with an audience at the Neuchatel International Film Festival in Switzerland. Basically, it moved him to tears. "Anyone out there wondering if [J.J. Abrams is] going to pull it off, he’s pulling it off. He showed me cut scenes, he showed me sequences, images, pictures. I cried and I hugged that guy," Smith told the crowd.
Smith isn’t the only one on the Star Wars: Episode VII set these days. As we reported over the weekend, newcomers Crystal Clarke and Pip Anderson have nabbed roles in the upcoming sequel, though they were hired through an open casting call, and we have no idea yet whom they might be playing.
The pieces of the Star Wars: Episode VII puzzle are coming together. The movie’s still reaching for a Dec. 18, 2015 release date.