The Star Wars
film franchise has a long association with the U.K., with George Lucas choosing to film the first three installments at the EMI Elstree Film Studios
(which are actually located in the humdrum town of Borehamwood
in Hertfordshire). The U.K. was also used for some of the prequel movies, although the bulk of the shooting took place in Australia.
Now the news has come in that the latest Star Wars film is to be made in the U.K., according to the BBC
. The J.J. Abrams
directed seventh movie is due to start production next year and is scheduled for release in 2015.
The selection of the U.K. as the place for the main filming has come about after the Chancellor George Osborne (of the current ConDem U.K. government) agreed a tax break with Disney Studios (who now own all the rights to Star Wars, following the sale of Lucasfilm
to the corporation).
Kathleen Kennedy, head of Lucasfilm, is quoted by the Independent
as saying: "We've devoted serious time and attention to revisiting the origins of Star Wars as inspiration for our process on the new movie, and I'm thrilled that returning to the UK for production and utilizing the incredible talent there can be a part of that. Speaking from my own long-standing connection to the UK with films like Raiders of the Lost Ark, Empire of the Sun and recently War Horse, it's very exciting to be heading back."
The actual location in the U.K. has yet to be announced, although one Star Wars fan site
speculates that it will be Pinewood Studios, the 'home' of the James Bond movies.