When Walt Disney acquired Lucasfilm Ltd. for $4.05 billion and announced a new Star Wars trilogy beginning in 2015 it shocked millions around the world, but in reality it seems George Lucas and Disney have been planning this for a while.
According to Vulture a 40-50 page treatment for Episode 7 already exists, and has been written by Michael Arndt, the Oscar winning writer behind Toy Story 3, Little Miss Sunshine, and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Deadline expands on this by saying Arndt’s treatment covers “not just one but also the next three Star Wars films”.
The Star Wars Episode 7 story treatment will apparently be sent to a number of potential directors in the near future, and Arndt “is likely to be at least one of the writers when the Disney/Lucasfilm project begins shooting in 2014.”
Vulture also has some details on which characters may be appearing:
The studio’s brass want to bring back the three central characters of the original Star Wars: a much older Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, and Han Solo. No deals are in place with any of the original actors, though our source did say it had high ambitions to sign up Mark Hamill.
We heard earlier this week that Harrison Ford may be interested in returning, so it’s looking positive that the trio will return at the moment (things may change when deals are being made, however). A mix of new and old characters would be a good way to approach this as it would please fans who want to see Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, and Han Solo again, but also provide fresh blood to carry the new trilogy forward.