Last night we learned Gareth Edwards (Godzilla) had signed to direct the first Star Wars spinoff movie, with Gary Whitta hired to pen the script. Lucasfilm’s press release mentioned Whitta’s screenplay for The Book of Eli and his work on Telltale Games’ The Walking Dead, but they didn’t admit he also wrote After Earth, because let’s all just pretend that movie never happened.
That’s Whitta pictured above. He’s actually lost quite a bit of weight since that photo, but Gary Oldman’s in it, so… yeah. Of course we’ll use it.
He’s writing the spinoff with a release date of December 16, 2016, which a leaked toy promotion schedule suggests is the likely date for the troubled Boba Fett spin-off. The press release included the customary serious quote from a screenwriter about a project.
“From the moment I first saw the original movie as a wide-eyed kid, Star Wars has been the single most profound inspiration to my imagination and to my career as a writer. It is deeply special to me,so to be given the opportunity to contribute to its ongoing legacy, especially in collaboration with a film-maker as talented as Gareth, is literally a dream come true. I’m still pinching myself.”
Okay, but how does he talk when he’s just sitting around with friends cracking jokes about Star Wars? Luckily, we have a video from March 9th, 2011. In the clip below, Whitta visits the Tested.com Podcast and talks about a prank he’d like to pull at Disney’s Jedi Training Academy. Now that he actually works for Disney, we hope it doesn’t get pulled. If anything, this shows the guy has always been passionate about Star Wars, can poke fun at his own weight issues, and is kind of a bastard with a really morbid sense of humor. I can dig it.