10 Things We Learned From Colbert-Abrams ‘Star Wars’ Talk
7. J.J. Abrams promises there will be less “lens flare” shots in Force
There’s a directorial flourish and then there’s self-parody — and Abrams promises he’s easing up on his signature stylistic tic of shining lights directly into anamorphic lenses to create flares. He could explain it away in the Star Trek films (“the future is so bright!”) but admits he has no excuse for Super 8. He recalled how one shot in Star Trek Into Darkness was so overrun by lens flare his wife shouted that she couldn’t see Alice Eve. He made an effort to tone it down for The Force Awakens, and when he spotted his lighting crew bringing large spotlights onto the set he would joke “these aren’t the flares you’re looking for.”
8. Yes, the filmmaker knows that some folks were not happy with his Trek sequel
Abrams is aware that “we got in trouble on the second Star Trek film with some of the fans,” and admitted. “There were too many nods to The Wrath of Khan. I’ll cop to that.” (Full disclosure: I, the author, was the gentleman who led the now notorious fan panel at the 2013 Las Vegas convention in which we, the aggrieved dweebs of the Trekkie community, declared that Into Darkness was the worst Star Trek film of all time. Very sorry, J.J.) Whether a proposed third Trek film from the Bad Robot crew will serve as a corrective or not remains to be seen, but he acknowledges that the nerds were indeed heard.
9. Never let facts get in the way of a good story or Aerosmith video
Colbert pried some good stories from Abrams about his years as a script doctor — including one on Michael Bay’s Armageddon, in which he learned an early Hollywood lesson: “What would really happen doesn’t really matter.” He consulted an astrophysicist who politely pointed out that virtually everything in the miners-in-space epic was bunk. Abrams was forced to come back to producer Jerry Bruckheimer and let him know “nothing works.” The producer’s response was simple: “Leave it!”
10. The Force has always been strong with Abrams
Without getting “too metaphysical,” Abrams did he best to express just how much the Force has meant to him over the years. “A religion with no God? It made sense to me at age 11.” He added that he liked the notion that all people were “connected” and all it needed was for you to believe. He also concluded, to great huzzahs from the assembled crowd, that Star Wars is bigger than any of us. Though Abrams is ever the showman, his humility in the shadow of this enormous franchise seemed wholly sincere.
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