LucasFilm and Disney have decided to shoot the first standalone “Star Wars” film in the U.K.
The movie will be filmed at the Pinewood Studios west of London next year — the same location currently used for “Star Wars: Episode VII” with J.J. Abrams directing.
Chancellor George Osborne disclosed the decision while he visited the set Tuesday. He posted the announcement on his Twitter account along with a photo:
With #StarWars director J.J Abrams and Lucasfilm president Kathy Kennedy, talking to a key cast member.. pic.twitter.com/12sRtBbf8E
— George Osborne (@George_Osborne) June 10, 2014
Osborne also issued a statement: “Lucasfilm and Disney’s decision to shoot the Star Wars standalone movie in the UK is testament to the incredible talent in Britain. This will mean more jobs and more investment. It is great news for people working at Pinewood Studios, from the set designers to the carpenters.”
“As Chancellor I have been determined that we back our brilliant creative industries which is why we have invested in skills and training as well as providing tax relief for films, high-end TV, animation, video games and regional theatre,” he added. “‘The further changes the government made to the film tax relief at Budget 2014 will support our highly skilled, innovative creative sectors so that they continue to thrive and encourage more films to be made in the UK.”
Lucasfilm announced on May 22 that “Godzilla” director Gareth Edwards would direct the first standalone “Star Wars” film — which is not related to the next planned trilogy. Disney has dated for release on Dec. 16, 2016.
Gary Whitta (“The Book of Eli”) will write the script.
LucasFilm has not reveal the subject of the new movie, although there have been rumors that the new spinoffs would focus on characters like bounty hunter Boba Fett and Yoda.
Disney has said it plans to produce at least three of the spinoff films.
Disney also has said it intends to release a new “Star Wars”-related movie (including spinoffs) every year starting with “Star Wars: Episode VII,” to be released Dec. 18, 2015.