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Colin Trevorrow Plans to Shoot ‘Star Wars: Episode IX’ on Film, Not Digital


During a press conference at the Sundance Film Festival, “Jurassic World” director Colin Trevorrow weighed in on the difference between shooting movies on film vs. digitally, which will ultimately affect the filming of “Star Wars: Episode VIII.” Trevorrow will helm as-yet-untitled “Star Wars: Episode VIII,” the followup to J.J. Abram’s recording-breaking “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” Trevorrow revealed that he plans to use film stock to shoot the upcoming blockbuster.

“It’s a period film,” Trevorrow joked, referring to the franchise’s iconic opening scrawl. “It happened a long time ago.”

After all, when it comes to watching period films, he prefers when they’re shot on film. “There’s something in my brain that says, ‘Well, they didn’t have video cameras then,'” Trevorrow explained.

Directed by Abrams, “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” is now playing in theaters and stars franchise veterans Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Peter Mayhew, Anthony Daniels and Kenny Baker, joined by newcomers John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Lupita Nyong’o, Gwendoline Christie and Max von Sydow.

(via Variety)


  • FreeJack

    There is literally no reason to shoot this on film, other than pretentiousness, and a laundry list of reasons to shoot digital. Ridiculous…but hey, it’s not his money.

  • drwiley00

    I’m glad. Film still looks better. Digital still can’t quite get the contrast in colors correct. And there’s something that feels alive when you see the way light plays over grain. I don’t mind digital but there is a “too clean” look to it that still seems sterilized.

  • penguintruth

    I don’t care what you shoot it on as long as it’s a good movie with a solid plot, characters, atmosphere, and action.

  • modok baby

    Outside of the title, this article consistently refers to Trevorrow as the director of the upcoming Episode VIII, which is actually Rian Johnson’s followup to The Force Awakens. Trevorrow’s Episode IX will be looming in our future until 2019.

  • Dale D. Hirlehey

    He is directing Episode IX (9) not VIII (8) – Rian Johnson is directing (and writing) the followup to The Force Awakens.

  • LightingBug

    Seriously again and again, bloggers don’t know roman numerals or which director is directing which sequel. At least make the headline match the body copy…

  • Chicken McPhee

    Wauuugh Trevorrow’s directing SW8? WHYYY?
    Oh, right, cause Jurassic World made a bank.
    But the film was stupid. Lots of obvious low-hanging fruit choices in both storytelling and visually… I’d be much more down if JJ directed it, so like JJ himself, I too regret JJ isn’t directing Ep8. Good call on the use of film, but still. Trevorrow is not the best storyteller.

  • Chicken McPhee

    Don’t be so proud of this technological terror you’ve constructed. The ability to shoot on digital is insignificant next to the power of the film.

  • Chicken McPhee

    Correct. Maybe he’ll learn filmmaking by then and won’t put ewoks in the movie.

  • Brandon

    Well FreeJack, clue us in on your vast range of experiences in the the realm of movie making. If you are going to pretend you know what you are talking about, you have to have something to back it up. The only pretentiousness (was that your word of the day you looked up to seem intelligent/) here is your post and your belief that we care what you think.

  • FreeJack

    Sorry I’m late, but yes…I do actually work in film and do actually know what I’m talking about. Quality film stock is expensive, and it comes in very short loads. So you can’t shoot very long before you have to switch loads. This creates a lot of start and stop in production, which kills time, which – you guessed it – costs a lot of money. It also, in my opinion, makes it a lot harder for actors to get in, and stay in, their best performance mindset. So it requires more time to get your circle takes.

    Then there is the fact that the film must then go to the lab and be processed, then go through telecine to get it into a form that can be used on digital nonlinear systems like Avid…ALL of which costs more money than shooting straight digital.

    The you create more work for visual effects artists, who don’t have as much picture information to work with as they would with the current high end digital cameras, and have to deal with matching film grain. All of which takes time and costs more money.

    And the reason the directors give for shooting analog? “Cause it just feels nostalgic” or “I prefer the look.” When that same exact look can be replicated digitally, with a single pass, at minimal expense. And let’s not forget that in the vast majority of theaters, these films are being delivered and projected digitally, anyway.

    So yes…it is pretentiousness that causes directors to go analog, because they think it makes them more artful. In fact, it’s a giant waste of money and the costs are a ripple effect throughout production and post, which ends up costing a LOT more money in the end. There are ample reasons most are going digital today.

    Sorry it took a while to reply to this sass, I haven’t logged in for a while…but hopefully I have satisfied your curiosity.