After yesterday’s alien sighting, the filming of Star Wars Episode VIII in Ireland appears to be wrapping up. The crew were spotted celebrating at a local pub, and there was no action today save for the inevitable mop-up.
So let’s go back to Surrey, England and revisit the Falcon set!
The intrepid lads at urban exploration site 28 Days Later are back with more spy shots. Led by Bothan spy The_Raw, this bunch also snuck into the Longcross Studios set and appears to be genuine SW fans. They took the most beautiful shots of the Ahch-To set we’ve seen to date.
Here are some of the highlights (Clicking the photos will redirect you to the forum thread for the larger image):
A mockup of the Millennium Falcon’s cockpit switches, minus the flight controls and seats
An upclose shot of the mysterious tree
Notice how Rey had to make her way past it while going uphill to meet Luke. While it wasn’t shown in The Force Awakens, there’s a good chance it will play a central role in Episode VIII. We’ll be discussing this in a future article.
And finally, the big mama-jama. Our scruffy nerf herders took this intriguing shot of what appears to be covered vehicles on set:
1. Could that huge object on the left be a disassembled Y-wing?
- The engine nacelles look to be the right shape and length, minus the rounded engine cover on the front
- The “neck” between the cockpit and the engine compartment appears to be the right length. Notice how the tarp slopes down, indicating the dead space aft of the passenger compartment.
2. Next, we have what looks to be a speeder
Could it be the same as the exploding vehicle used in Dubrovnik, Croatia?
- The engine placements don’t match. But then again the engine pods might pivot up when in flight mode.
- However, when it comes to chassis the shape isn’t the same. Which makes it unlikely to be the same vehicle.
However, a second speeder was spotted in Dubrovnik under tight guard:
- This tan speeder appears to match the shape of the front cabin and engine placement
- If it’s the same vehicle, then Lucasfilm took great pains to either transport it from Croatia or recreate it in England.
- This means it could play a bigger role in the film, such as being Finn and Kelly Tan’s vehicle during the rumored speeder chase scene
Then there’s two to three more tarp-covered objects behind. But we have too little info to go on, and Stormtrooper Larry is too lazy anyway.
3. The location
So why are these vehicles chilling in Longcross? Our guess is they will be used in the topside portion of the set, which appears to be a completely different planet than Ahch-To:
There’s a huge flat area right there. If it’s not a landing field, it’s either a fancy courtyard where vehicles drop off passengers, or a parking lot filled with speeders. One of which might be used by the heroes to make their getaway.
So here’s a few possibilities. It could be:
- The rumored space casino that Luke and Rey will visit
- The Senate building of the relocated Republic capital, where Leia will make her impassioned speech for war against the First Order
- An important site in the Republic capital where Poe, Finn and Kelly Tran will have their adventure.
If we were to guess, the speeder would take off here in the Longcross set. Then the action would continue through the narrow cobblestone streets of the city, represented by Dubrovnik. Reports from the Croatia shooting last March suggested an exciting speeder chase, with the fancy speeder getting blown up!
Either way, we can expect the vehicles to be in Hasbro’s lineup come Force Friday 2017. Get ready for a bunch of Titanium speeders and playsets!
4. The grassy knoll
The vehicles might have been sitting there unnoticed for nearly a month now. The photo below comes from the Daily Mail article announcing the full-size Falcon to the world last April 30.
Notice how the speeder background fits with the image. We’ve mapped out the possible location of the speeders and even the vantage point of our Bothan spy:
We also spoke to Chris, the admin of urban exploration site 28 Days Later.com:
Unfortunately somebody posted their pictures on Instagram and Facebook, that’s why the reports went public. Apparently this weekend the studios were inundated with more recreational trespassers, like hundreds of them. Security is now through the roof.
So this might mean the end of spy shots at Longcross Studios. Hopefully more “lost trekkers” stumble there, before Disney clamps down on the site 😉
Thanks to site owner Chris of 28DL for the tip! Be sure to check out their urban exploration reports for more Longcross intel.