The biggest cinematic release of the year, J.J Abrams’ Star Wars: The Force Awakens, is a week away from being in theaters, but marketing and promotional elements are still going strong. Between trailers, TV spots, multiple action figures and more, fans are chomping at the bit to a glimpse of Episode VII.
Little is known about the plot, and even though there are multiple fan theories floating around the web, there hasn’t been an official word on what the story is about. What we do know is that it will bring together characters from the original trilogy as well as new heroes and villains — and with them will come new costumes. Characters such as Leia and Darth Vader have costumes that have become classics in the history of cinema, and those of the new villains have the potential to become part history as well. But did you know that Captain Phasma’s chrome stormtrooper suit was originally planned for Kylo Ren?
During the Star Wars: The Force Awakens global press day, Abrams shared some bits of information about the elaborate costumes of some of the new characters. These costumes go from those that take “about twenty minutes” to get into, such as Rey’s desert scavenger outfit, to much more elaborate ones, like Captain Phama’s and Kylo Ren’s.
Speaking about Ren’s dark suit, Abrams revealed it was the “most difficult to arrive at” and that the chrome stormtrooper suit was originally pitched for Ren. Abrams said:
“We went through, I don’t know how many hundreds and probably thousands of iterations and different versions. One of the great things about that was, over the course of that, the costume for Captain Phasma was designed, that was actually pitched as a Kylo Ren costume originally. For story reasons, it didn’t make sense and didn’t work. We suddenly realized, ‘oh my God, this is one of the greatest looking costumes I’ve ever seen.’ He, then she, became one of my favorite characters in the movie.”
Captain Phasma’s costume became a fan favorite since the first moment she appeared. It became more popular when it was revealed that Phasma is, in fact, a female character, played by Game of Thrones actress Gwendoline Christie.
Kylo Ren, one of the more intriguing-looking villains of the story, has a mask that resembles that of Darth Vader. It has been reported that Ren is a Darth Vader enthusiast, looking to continue what Vader started, and he begins by shaping his mask after the one of the most dangerous Sith the galaxy has seen.
Abrams shared the following about Kylo Ren’s costume:
“The design of Kylo Ren was the most difficult one, and when we finally saw the mask, and the beginning of that design, it was really instantly clear that was the winner. I’m very grateful to Michael [Kaplan] and his whole amazing team.”
Promotion for the film is still going, with an international trailer released earlier today. This trailer, aimed for Chinese audiences, didn’t come alone – four new character posters were released with it.
The posters feature Rey (played by Daisy Ridley), a scavenger from desert planet Jakku and female lead of this new adventure; Finn (John Boyega), the stormtrooper who will change his path throughout the movie with the help of Rey; Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), a member of the Knights of Ren and the First Order; and the touch of nostalgia comes with Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher).
Disney has definitely taken marketing to a new level with The Force Awakens; just when we thought they would stop sharing new footage and posters, they surprise us with just that. The risk of overselling is high, but they have played it wisely enough and managed to seed excitement instead of making the audience grow tired of it.
Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens releases in theaters on December 18th, 2015, followed by Rogue One: A Star Wars Story on December 16th, 2016, Star Wars: Episode VIII on May 26th, 2017, and the Han Solo Star Wars Anthology film on May 25th, 2018. Star Wars: Episode IX is expected to reach theaters in 2019, followed by the third Star Wars Anthology film in 2020.