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Star Wars Episode VII to be shot on film, not digital

The new Star Wars movie will be shot on good old-fashioned film, like the originals -- not the digital cameras used in Episodes I-III.

Nick Hide Managing copy editor
Nick manages CNET's advice copy desk from Springfield, Virginia. He's worked at CNET since 2005.
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Nick Hide
2 min read

Never mind about Baffman, this is the best geek news of the day. The new Star Wars movie, Episode VII, will be shot on good old-fashioned film, like the originals -- not the digital cameras used in Episodes I-III.

Cinematographer Dan Mindel, who worked with new Star Wars director JJ Abrams on the recent Star Trek flicks, confirmed he'd be shooting on 35mm Kodak film at an event hosted by the American Society of Cinematographers, Boba Fett Fan Club reports.

Mindel first worked with Abrams on Mission: Impossible 3 and taught him how to create the lens-flare effect he crams into every single second of the Star Trek movies. What a great debt we all owe him.

Earlier this year Lucasfilm caused millions of voices to suddenly cry out in relief when it confirmed it wouldn't be re-releasing the prequels in 3D. There's no word on whether the new movie will require you to wear a clunky pair of specs, but Star Trek Into Darkness was post-converted into 3D (bleugh), so it's not like Abrams has a problem with it.

An elegant medium, for a more civilised age, film captures light in an organic, analogue, imperfect way. Great directors have used this to their advantage, and in this case it's comforting to think Abrams will be closer to the grubby look of the original trilogy than the glossy cleanliness of the prequels.

Episode VII is due out in 2015, with VIII and IX due in 2017 and 2019. Spin-off movies will appear in the years in between, rumoured to be focusing on a dashing young Han Solo in one, and tin-hatted rocket-pack pilot Boba Fett in another.

This mimics Marvel's success with the Avengers and standalone superhero movies set in the same universe. Marvel, of course, is owned by Disney, which splashed out a whopping $4bn last year on Lucasfilm and the right to film new Star Wars adventures.

Star Wars fans, are you happy with the direction the new films are taking? Do you think Jar Jar Abrams is the right sentient being for the job? Or is there someone else who'd be better suited to taking the helm? Share your feelings in the comments, or on the den of villainy that is our Facebook page.