Vulture has answered at least one of the tangential questions no one was asking about Disney's overhauling of the Star Wars franchise, reporting that Zack Snyder is developing a standalone Star Wars film, one that will exist parallel to the next trilogy but will likely be set within that same post-Return Of The Jedi timeline. As you can imagine, the aftermath of the announcement gas been as though a million voices suddenly cried out in terror, then were suddenly silenced by dragons and blimps. But of course, as with all things Star Wars, this is an as-yet unconfirmed report—albeit a remarkably detailed one, with Vulture's unnamed "insider" saying that Snyder's movie will be a "Jedi epic" loosely based on Akira Kurosawa's The Seven Samurai, "with the ronin and katana being replaced by the Force-wielding knights and their iconic lightsabers," Seven Samurai replacing Hidden Fortress as the go-to Kurosawa crib in the Star Wars universe, and Zack Snyder replacing whomever you most wanted to see named as directing a new Star Wars film.
As Comics Beat has already pointed out, the storyline bears a slight resemblance to an arc in the original Marvel Star Wars run—wherein Han Solo and Chewbacca act out their own Seven Samurai with the help of a group of mercenaries that includes a giant, surly rabbit—though it's believed that Snyder's film will be a wholly original story, besides all the stuff it's obviously leaning on. But again, it's too soon to say definitively whether we'll actually see a group of Jedis wielding their lightsabers in slow motion to protect a charcoal-streaked moisture farm, as the earliest this film would be produced would be after Episode VII debuts in 2015.
UPDATE: No sooner had Vulture posted their story than Snyder—as is the case with all of these Star Wars stories—came forward to deny it, with his rep issuing a statement to The Hollywood Reporter that reads, "While he is super flattered because he is a huge fan, Zack is not involved in any way with the new Star Wars. He is currently in post on his two films, Man Of Steel and 300: Battle Of Artemisia," shooting down reports of any involvement with the next trilogy or any other Star Wars films while also getting some nice plugs in there. And so, reporting on Star Wars continues to be as clumsy and random as a blaster that no director wants to officially say they're putting in a movie.
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