When the new trailer for “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” debuted during “Monday Night Football” halftime, Twitter went crazy with 17,000 tweets a minute, and Facebook reported 1.3 million people commenting in the first hour. Ticket sites including Fandango and MovieTickets.com crashed (AMC’s slowed down) as fans tried to get in on preview screenings the night of Dec. 17.
Now that the boiling frenzy is down to a steady simmer, you might have time to read some of these tidbits we learned in the days since:
▪ The trailer begins with Rey (played by newcomer Daisy Ridley) in goggles and desert getup, scavenging around a giant wreck, explains Disney Insider. A voice asks, “Who are you?” That’s Maz Kanata (Lupita Nyong’o), who narrates much of the trailer.
▪ Later we see Han Solo (Harrison Ford) talking about the Jedi and all that other “Star Wars” mythology: “It’s true. All of it.” And Leia (Carrie Fisher) says, “The Force, it’s calling to you. Just let it in.” But no Luke (Mark Hamill), leading to all sorts of speculation. Has he gone to the dark side? Our theory: He didn’t age well. Keep him out of sight as much as possible.
▪ Why did the trailer debut during a football game? Because it was on ESPN, owned by Disney, which owns “Star Wars.” The Force of capitalism is strong with that studio.
Cooper at “Night”
Kansas City’s own Chris Cooper has signed on to star in “Live By Night,” an adaptation of Dennis Lehane’s novel, reports Variety. Ben Affleck produces and stars in this story of organized crime in the Prohibition era. Cooper will play a Florida sheriff who causes trouble for Affleck’s character. (Cooper played Affleck’s jailbird father in “The Town.”) In the meantime, look for Cooper in Jake Gyllenhaal’s next drama, “Demolition,” in April and in next month’s Hulu miniseries “11/22/63,” with James Franco time-traveling to the Kennedy era.