‘Rebel Moon’ Team Was Glad the Zack Snyder Film Got Booted From the ‘Star Wars’ Universe: ‘F— Star Wars!’

During a recent “Rebel Moon” press junket (via /Film), producers Deborah Snyder and Eric Newman expressed relief over the film failing to materialize as an entry in the “Star Wars” universe. Filmmaker Zack Snyder originally conceived “Rebel Moon” as a “Seven Samurai”-inspired “Star Wars” movie that he pitched to Lucasfilm shortly after Disney acquired the studio in 2012 for $4.05 billion. The director wanted to create original characters and he pushed for an R-rated script, which ultimately led “Rebel Moon” to become its own property outside of the “Star Wars” franchise.

“Once, it was a ‘Star Wars’ film, and I never wanted it to be,” Deborah Snyder said. “I remember, I said to Zack, ‘I just feel like your hands are going to be tied so much in what that IP is,’ even though it kind of lived outside of it. So I was kind of happy when that fell apart, because I always felt like it was better. We learned so much with all our years working with the superheroes and creating those worlds, and to do something now that’s wholly original… we say it’s a science fantasy more than science fiction, and to take all those skills that Zack has been honing, and to do something in this space, just seemed really exciting.”

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Newman added, “I remember [Zack] calling me at some point, and this has got to be 15 years ago, saying, ‘I’m thinking of doing Seven Jedi, in the ‘Star Wars’ universe.’ And I was like, ‘Oh, that’s a cool idea.’ […] Then, a few years later, he calls me and goes, ‘You know, I think it could be a television show.’ I’m like, ‘Yes, let’s do this! Fuck ‘Star Wars!’ Let’s do this as a TV show.'”

“Rebel Moon” ended up being made not as a TV show but a movie that will be released on Netflix in two parts. The film is a space opera that follows a young woman living in a peaceful colony on the outskirts of the galaxy. She’s given the task of finding warriors who can fend off an impending invasion by an evil despot. The cast includes Sofia Boutella, Charlie Hunnam, Djimon Hounsou, Ray Fisher, Doona Bae, Jena Malone, Staz Nair, E. Duffy and Michiel Huisman.

Zack Snyder announced in June that each “Rebel Moon” movie is getting two separate cuts. One cut is a movie that “anyone can enjoy and watch,” and one cut will be more explicit and strictly for adults. He more recently told Netflix’s Tudum publication that a director’s cut of the film will include nearly 60 minutes of additional footage.

“The director’s cut is close to an hour of extra content, so I think it’s a legitimate extended universe version,” Snyder said. “You really get to see a lot. It’s just more painted-in all the way. The director’s [cut] is a settle-in deep dive, which I have notoriously done throughout my career. I don’t know how I got into this director’s cut thing, but what I will say about it is that, for me, the director’s cuts have always been something I had to fight for in the past and nobody wanted it. It was this bastard child that I was always trying to put together because they felt like there was a deeper version. And with Netflix, we shot scenes just for the director’s cut. So in that way, it’s really a revelation because it gives that second kick at the can for big fans.”

The first “Rebel Moon” movie, titled “A Child of Fire,” will stream on Netflix starting Dec. 22. The second part, titled “The Scargiver,” will arrive on April 19, 2024.

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