Zack Snyder's reps have officially denied the "Man of Steel" filmmaker's involvement in any new "Star Wars" film, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
According to an exclusive report earlier today by Vulture, Snyder was attached to developing a stand-alone "Star Wars" adventure, one that takes place after the events of the upcoming "Episode VII" (currently planned for release in 2015) but isn't an "official" chapter in the new trilogy -- a sort of large-scale (and supposedly authorized) piece of fan fiction, if you will.
Snyder's film was allegedly going to be loosely based on Akira Kurosawa's action classic, "Seven Samurai," which focuses on a group of wandering samurai warriors hired to defend a small village against bandits. In Snyder's reimagining, the samurai (or ronin, rather, as they are masterless) would've been replaced with Jedi Knights and their weapon of choice, the katana, would've been replaced with, of course, lightsabers. The film would have commenced with development sometime shortly after production began on "Episode VII."
But in an exclusive statement to THR, Snyder's rep says, "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.'”
Wait a minute ... the "new 'Star Wars.'" Is that just a clever way of saying that Snyder isn't involved with "Episode VII" but might be involved with, you know, something else "Star Wars"-related?
Apparently not. That means no "Episode VII," "VIII" or "IX," and no offshoot movies, the rep confirms.
It's kind of too bad, because the idea of a Zack Snyder-directed variation on "Seven Samurai" with "Star Wars" characters certainly had potential. "Seven Samurai" is just one of many Kurosawa films that influenced George Lucas when he was developing his epic space opera ... and it's one of his all-time favorite movies, period.
"It's a brilliant, brilliant film," Lucas said in an interview with The Telegraph in 2005. "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."
Lucas originally offered the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi to Kurosawa regular Toshiro Mifune -- and, as we reported earlier today, apparently the role of Darth Vader as well.
As for Snyder, he'd be a great choice for "Star Wars," whether for a splinter project or "official" installment or whatever you want to give him. Separate "Watchmen" the film from "Watchmen" the comic and it's a stunning piece of work, bringing a startling (and, contrary to popular opinion, extremely disciplined) visual style to a complex, character-driven story. "300" was a hoot and a holler and "Dawn of the Dead" was a rush. (And this writer, although admittedly in the minority, totally dug "Sucker Punch." So there.) And "Man of Steel," opening June 14, looks nothing short of breathtaking. He's got what it takes to do a "Star Wars" flick, especially if Disney were on hand to keep him from indulging too much in what could be considered some bad filmmaking habits, such as sudden speed changes and occasional incongruous music choices.
Alas, this would-be news was but a brief disturbance in the Force, and we're once again left wondering who's actually going to direct "Episode VII" and what, exactly, it's going to be about. And we have to admit, false reports like this are making the waiting period and speculating process not nearly as much fun as they used to be.
In fact, this is all kind of starting to suck. Step up, Disney!
See the trailer for Zack Snyder's upcoming movie 'Man of Steel':
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