At this point, there can be no further doubt. Much of the world is caught in the grips of The Force Awakens fever. Two days from its massive worldwide release, fans and talk show hosts alike are speculating about everything Star Wars and doing their best to dodge potential spoilers. And Conan O’Brien, a self-professed super-geek is no exception.
The popular late night host even decked out his set – not for the holidays – but in honor of Episode 7. Sporting a Death Star above his desk in place of his trademark moon, the comedian recently spoke with Andy Serkis (aka Supreme Leader Snoke) about the wild speculations surrounding his character in the upcoming film. And it doesn’t look good.
Asked point-blank by O’Brien on his TBS show whether Snoke is an evil Jar Jar Binks, Serkis revealed that, “Uh well, it’s true,” despite not wanting to “spoil it for anyone.” Fortunately, amusing side-by-side images of Serkis and Jar Jar notwithstanding, Serkis was just joking. Phew. But the actor does discuss the challenges in selecting the right voice for what amounts to, essentially, new emperor for the trilogy. Serkis says:
“Obviously J.J. [Abrams] and I discussed it. We went through a whole load of [different voices]. We didn’t know what he was going to look like. The process of designing these characters takes years.”
Serkis also jokes about several comical iterations of Snoke, including “Supreme Leader Donald Trump” and a Scottish brogue Snoke. O’Brien and Serkis also explore the impact of Snoke’s as the first voice fans heard after the first trailer dropped, and how the mystery fed rumors and speculation regarding who’s responsible for: “There’s been an awakening.” And there’s no doubt about the role that menacing voice-over played in fueling the Star Wars: The Force Awakens fever.
To date, little is still known about Snoke’s character and even his appearance. As the Supreme Leader of the First Order, clearly he’s this film's puppeteer. Speculations have been wild across the web, including the legitimate rumor of an evil Jar Jar, his supposed appearance as snake-like robed creature, and his rumored backstory as a corruptor of the New Republic’s fledgling Senate. All we really know about Snoke comes from his sinister voice, his position atop the enemies of the Resistance, and larger physique/damaged mentality.
Since early reviews and responses, which have been munificently lacking in details, are generally positive, it looks like our first glimpse at Supreme Leader Snoke will be impressive. Still, as a motion-capture character, it’s hard to forget the slickness of the prequels and their overuse of such technique. However, since Abrams is well aware of the failings of prequels and the dangers of heavy CGI use, Episode 7 is unlikely to make such a mistake. One thing’s for sure, we’re all about to find out.
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.