About That Third Galaxy’s Edge Attraction…

There’s a story being shared on social media about the mysterious new attraction for Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge that Disney is building in Anaheim in Florida. Unfortunately it’s not entirely accurate and filled with completely debunked old rumors about the Star Wars themed lands that they’re building.

The concept of the attraction isn’t an issue here, rather the logistics they’re reporting about it. The big thing is that they claim there’s no room for a third attraction in Anaheim and to build it they’d need to remove Mickey’s ToonTown. That’s completely false as when the fourteen acres of land was parceled out for Galaxy’s Edge, a third attraction was planned to be part of it. Back then it was supposedly a river ride similar to the one in Pandora, as opposed to the Bantha ride that’s currently being rumored. When the third attraction was axed, the land was still reserved for it, so when Galaxy’s Edge opens in Anaheim before it does in Florida in 2019 they’ll have a good section of expansion space reserved behind the Millennium Falcon show building.

Bulldozing ToonTown is an old bit of fake news started by a very unreliable Disneyland blog who likes to bash every change to Walt’s park (despite he himself saying it’ll always change). It reached such a fever pitch in 2015, that the official Disneyland Twitter account had to debunk the idea of removing ToonTown for Galaxy’s Edge:

Galaxy’s Edge is just over fourteen acres, which is two acres larger than the 2012 Cars Land expansion that was built over in California Adventure and opened with three attractions, a pretty great restaurant (Flo’s breakfast is among the best in the parks), snack shacks, and multiple gift shops. They planned for more than two attractions from the start in Galaxy’s Edge, both in Anaheim and in Florida. That’s why they chose fourteen acres for the expansion.

The concept that Anaheim doesn’t have space for a third attraction that was in the cards from the beginning is something that clashes with reality. As for why that third attraction isn’t being built, well there were rumors going around D23 Expo last month and if anyone is familiar with the historical WDW/DLR drama when it comes to shared costs of attractions it’s not too hard to figure out why there’s not a third one being built…yet.

Jeremy has been active on the web since the 90s. He's written for sites such as IGN and Furious Fanboys and even once worked on Star Wars Galaxies (RIP). A long time ago in a galaxy far far away he used to Podcast about Star Wars with friends.

The Last Jedi Toys Are Starting to Leak – Do Not Share Images!

Traditionally when it comes to Star Wars toy leaks, LEGO is the first to get out in the wild. While they’ve been out for a while, new HD images of The Last Jedi LEGOs have leaked online. Even worse, some Toys R Us stores have broken the street date and put The Last Jedi toys on the shelves already! These are being spread around social media right now, but based on what happened with The Force Awakens I’d advise against even retweeting the images if you see them.

I like seeing Star Wars toys early as much as anyone, and the leaks for The Force Awakens made the 18-hour live stream absolutely hilarious. Every single world premiere reveal they hyped up on the live stream had already been seen by most Star Wars fans due to the toys already showing up on shelves at Walmart and Target across the country. I’m not saying to avoid sharing the toys to take something away from Star Wars fans, but instead to protect them from headaches and getting suspended from social media.

Disney/Lucasfilm uses an external enforcer for copyright on social media named Irdeto. Most of the time it’s an automated system that scans Twitter and Facebook for certain images, and then a DMCA take-down notice is fired off to the social media platform, and you’ll get your post deleted and an infraction placed on your account. It doesn’t matter if you take a picture of a toy sitting on a store shelf with your own personal camera (in which case you technically own that image), you’ll be hit with a copyright violation. Enough of those will result in you being suspended from whatever social media platform you use.

These notices can even apply to retweets. So if you’re on Twitter and see someone posting pictures of the new LEGO sets and retweet one of those, you can be hit just for retweeting the image. It sounds crazy, but this happened to Star Wars fans back in December of 2015 right before the release of The Force Awakens. They would retweet images of Hasbro figures that were sent out early to Walmart or Target, and that retweet would earn them a DMCA takedown.

So based on how things were handled with The Force Awakens, the safest thing to do when you see a new Star Wars toy is to not share pictures of it. Even if you see on on the shelf of Walmart early (thanks to the distribution problems), don’t take a picture of it and share. It’s not worth invoking the wrath of an automated copyright enforcement bot over a toy.

Jeremy has been active on the web since the 90s. He's written for sites such as IGN and Furious Fanboys and even once worked on Star Wars Galaxies (RIP). A long time ago in a galaxy far far away he used to Podcast about Star Wars with friends.

Piracy is Killing Hall H at San Diego Comic Con

Aside from a problem with counterfeit wristbands for the Saturday panels, one of the big complaints about Hall H at this year’s San Diego Comic Con was the lack of real big movie exclusives. Back in the day, Hall H was known for exclusive reveals that wouldn’t be released on the internet…ever, but that’s changed in the last couple of years. And you can thank idiots filming stuff on their cellphones for a brief moment of internet fame (before being hit by a DMCA hammer) for killing the Hall H of the past.

Don’t believe me? Well, lets use 20th Century Fox for an example. This year they showed up with just the Kingsman sequel. But fans, and even some media, were expecting more. Despite the official Hall H schedule saying it was specifically a Kingsman panel, people were pissed off when Fox didn’t show anything from Deadpool 2 or the upcoming mutant films. And this is due to piracy fears.

Want proof? In 2016 Fox completely skipped Hall H at SDCC, and the reason was specifically due to people filming stuff off screens the year before.

This year almost everything in Hall H was released online the moment it was shown in the convention center. The Ready Player One, Justice League, Thor, and Black Panther trailers were all online immediately. And of course the Infinity War footage was pirated within minutes of it being shown in the Hall. People are complaining this week about the lack of big exclusives in Hall H now, but they’re failing to grasp the reason why that is.

Contrast the problem with how Disney runs D23 Expo, and it’s worse. Nothing ever leaks from D23 Expo’s big hall. I saw one person on Twitter last night claiming that stuff leaks from Hall H because more people go there than Hall D23 at D23 Expo, and that’s an uninformed statement. Hall D23 holds 7,000 people. That’s more than Hall H’s 6500. Nothing ever leaks from Hall D23 because Disney takes security very seriously and doesn’t want their footage out. Everything leaks from SDCC because Comic Con puts everything on the honor system and thinks people are more honorable than they really are.

It seems like Comic Con is more interested in social media buzz out of Hall H than keeping the studios happy. Saying “Please don’t film the screens” doesn’t do anything at Comic Con, people are going to do it no matter what you tell them. Sealing phones in silver plastic baggies at D23? That stops people from pirating the footage completely.

Comic Con is really going to need to ask themselves if they want Hall H to return to the mystique it had in the past as being the place where Earth-shattering exclusives were shown. Right now it’s just a public YouTube space where trailers the public can also see are viewed by 6500 people who spent $200 for a pass and camped out 24 hours. Until Comic Con decides to take a look at how Disney handles security at their D23 Expo, and makes serious changes to the big Hall H presentations, the famous Hall H of SDCC will continue its death spiral and will soon be something that people won’t even want to bother with anymore.

Jeremy has been active on the web since the 90s. He's written for sites such as IGN and Furious Fanboys and even once worked on Star Wars Galaxies (RIP). A long time ago in a galaxy far far away he used to Podcast about Star Wars with friends.

Current Status of Furious Fanboys

Update: 8/2 7:45pm

At this point the site has been down for two weeks and there’s no communication at all from the owners and it appears as if it was intentionally shut down without notice. Can’t say that for sure, but everything is pointing to that conclusion. If so, RIP Furious Fanboys.

Update: 7/30 7:00am

After sending that email below I was on a very uncomfortable phone call (unrelated to that email, it was drama I wasn’t part of), but then I got an email within an hour explaining that someone else is going to be taking over hosting for the site and their tech guy basically dropped the ball in the middle of the transition. That’s why the site’s been down for ten days now.

Even if they ever get the site back up and running I don’t believe it can ever recover from this, and I’ve told them that multiple times. At this point I’m pretty apathetic about the whole situation as it’s been ten days and no progress yet.

Update: 7/28 8:30am

This may be the final update on the status of Furious Fanboys. I emailed my contact at the investment firm that owns the site once again yesterday afternoon and have heard no response as to how they’ll fix it. So this morning I have sent them the following email:

“It’s now the eighth day that the site is offline, and I’ve not yet heard a realistic solution to give confidence that you guys know how to fix it or even intend to. Furious Fanboys was a labor of love for nearly nine years. That’s why when I ceased being paid for it back in February I still tried to keep the site going and push whatever traffic to it I could.

If there was a intention to let it go and shut it down, it would’ve been nice to be informed of that so the eight years of content could’ve at least been archived and not lost like a fart in the wind. The loss of all that content forever is the most heartbreaking part of this. It’s happened before on the site, where two years were lost, but they were at least able to restore a backup with some content from 2011 and back. But now it’s all gone.

If I don’t hear an update by end of day today, then I’ll assume that the site is officially dead and offline, and I’ll be moving on.”

I will keep everyone updated with what happens.

Update: 7/27 Still no word as the site enters its seventh day online.

Update: 7:45am 7/26

As we enter the sixth day of Furious Fanboys being down I’ve decided to explain more about the last update in detail. It’s really not good right now.

Basically the site is down and all they really need to try with the host is to roll back to a backup of last Wednesday. But that’s not what they’re trying. They decided to set up a new Furious Fanboys blog on WordPress.com. I’m not kidding you. Seven years of content on a database on a crashed site and they decide to do a “WordPress reset” by setting up a freebie blog on WordPress.com?

Obviously I expressed how that won’t work to fix the issue and let them know that I’m not interested in starting over from scratch and letting all of that content just vanish. So that’s where we are at this point. I hope to have some news later today and I hope they realize they need to fix the site and not just start a new WordPress.com blog.

Update: 1:30pm 7/25

I’ve heard an update, and it’s scary. Not going to post the details here, but right now it’s not looking good for the site. Hopefully the email I sent off will light a fire under them to fix this.

I’ve been getting a lot of questions about what’s going on with Furious Fanboys, so here’s the latest I know as of 7:45am on 7/25.

On Thursday, the first day of San Diego Comic Con, Furious Fanboys went down with the host not responding. I immediately fired off an email to my contact at the company that now owns the site, and that evening he said he’d let the server guys know about it and get back to me ASAP.

I didn’t hear anything all weekend. On Sunday Stephanie, who does all of the great CW articles on the site, wanted to post an article about coping with not being at SDCC and couldn’t; so she contacted me. I explained all that I knew and copied my contact at the company again for as a reminder.

Yesterday Jason, who founded the site, emailed me and copied the CEO when he saw all of the Google errors, and I gave him the rundown of what I knew. Not long after that I finally received an update asking for some information as they were working on a fix that didn’t quite make much sense (as in theory they could just restore a backup of Wednesday’s snapshot as long as they had it).

So that’s where we are now. I’ll keep this post updated as I learn more information. Updates will be posted above.

Jeremy has been active on the web since the 90s. He's written for sites such as IGN and Furious Fanboys and even once worked on Star Wars Galaxies (RIP). A long time ago in a galaxy far far away he used to Podcast about Star Wars with friends.

Why Lucasfilm May Not Delay Han Solo

Note: This article originally ran on Furious Fanboys on July 1, 2017. As that site is currently dead it’s being mirrored here.

With the firing of the Han Solo directors and the hiring of Ron Howard, you’re hearing a lot of people predicting that the movie will be delayed until December once again. There are actually a couple of reasons why this may not happen, beginning with Ron Howard himself.

Ron Howard has been making movies for more than thirty-five years and is one of the fastest and best in Hollywood at it. In the 90s it wasn’t uncommon to see him direct and release a movie yearly. That’s one of the reasons why Lucasfilm brought him on. With 75% of a movie filmed and with eleven months left, he has more than enough time to make the May release date.

The other reason has to do with money. While December has been good for Star Wars, moving the franchise to the end of May is better for the Walt Disney Company as a whole. With Star Wars ending a May that Marvel kicked off, Disney would potentially have the box office momentum to be the #1 movie at the box office all summer long from May through July in both 2018 and 2018 using new releases from all of their studios to maintain that. This is a huge bragging point to Disney’s shareholders and it’s also Iger’s last two years as CEO, so that’s a huge high to go out on.

When Disney announced that Episode IX would release in May of 2019, making it the second of their Star Wars movies releasing in the summer after Han Solo, many people became confused. Why would Disney release an Avengers movie and a Star Wars movie in the same month two years in a row? It’s actually pretty simple if people took the time to look at a calendar and researched the box office history of Marvel movies.

With the exception of the first Avengers in 2012, which stayed at #1 in its fourth week, most Marvel Studios films drop out of the #1 spot by their third week. Disney owns Marvel and they’re well aware of this. By releasing a Marvel film in their traditional first weekend of May they’ll be #1 for the first three weeks of the month. Then right at the end of the month, in the Memorial Day weekend, Disney unleashes a Star Wars movie securing both the #1 and #2 spots at the box office and potentially maintaining the #1 box office spot for nearly two months. That’s a huge thing for Disney to brag about.

Looking at both Decembers, it actually works against Disney to release Star Wars up against their big films due to the close release dates. In 2018 they have Mary Poppins Returns scheduled for Christmas Day. Thats less than two weeks after when they would have released a Star Wars movie. And Star Wars fans may be aghast at this revelation, but to the Walt Disney Company, the Mary Poppins sequel is one of their most important releases in the last couple of decades. It’s a sequel to Walt Disney’s 1964 crowning achievement. Walt would pass away two years after the original Mary Poppins, so that movie stands as one of his greatest achievements on the big screen. As it shares some crossover in the family audience of Star Wars, Disney wouldn’t want the two to cannibalize each other at the box office. The movie is such a big deal for Disney, as a 2018 release, they’re already beginning to hype up the movie with a recent Entertainment Weekly cover.

December 2019 is even worse for Star Wars. Frozen 2 has been set for the last weekend of November, and Disney has positioned it there so it can soar across the December box office and leave everything else in its wake. Like with Mary Poppins, they don’t want to release a Star Wars movie (especially a major one like Episode IX) two weeks after Frozen 2 just so the family audience wouldn’t be there for Star Wars.

Going back to Marvel, that is also why Disney has wanted Star Wars at the end of May since The Force Awakens. Before JJ Abrams needed more time to remake A New Hope, the movie was internally scheduled for May 22, 2015. Disney moved Tomorrowland into that date when they had to push Star Wars to December. Before they needed more time to polish up and finish the script for The Last Jedi, it was officially scheduled to release on May 26, 2017. Just one day after the actual 40th anniversary of Star Wars.

Ever since the Lucasfilm purchase Disney saw huge summer box office dollar signs for the company as a whole if they could kick off May with Marvel and then have Star Wars rekindle the momentum into June after Marvel fell out of #1. Aside from the tradition of having Star Wars in May, that’s the real reason they want to move the movies back and why they have absolutely no problem with Avengers and Star Wars in the same month.

Jeremy has been active on the web since the 90s. He's written for sites such as IGN and Furious Fanboys and even once worked on Star Wars Galaxies (RIP). A long time ago in a galaxy far far away he used to Podcast about Star Wars with friends.

James Gunn Explains Groot’s Aging in the MCU

With Furious Fanboys still offline and without any sort of update on that situation, I decided to post this here because it’s pretty cool and answers a huge fan question about Infinity War.

In the Infinity War footage Marvel showed at D23 Expo and San Diego Comic Con, Groot appeared to be just a little older than the teenaged Groot in the post-credits scene for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Naturally people were wondering what that meant, so James Gunn explained on Facebook about Groot’s aging and why he appears how young he does in the Infinity War footage:

“In terms of how fast Groot grows overall, I can tell you this: Baby Groot appears two months after the Infant Groot we see at the end of Vol. 1. The post-credits scene with Adolescent Groot and Peter Quill is YEARS after the ending of Vol. 2. I won’t say exactly how many years at this time, but be clear that it took him a fair amount of time just to go from Baby Groot to Adolescent Groot. (As a side note, I’ll point out that Peter Quill can obviously understand what “I am Groot” means in the post-credits scene, so somehow he’s learned to understand him in the same way Rocket has).

Like dogs, who grow at a different rate than humans, and spend a different percentage of their lives in adolescence than humans do, Groot and Humans do not grow at some exact exchange rate. So, although two months seems to be about two years (as Baby Groot seems to behave roughly like a two year old), it is not fair to assume that every month is a year to Groot. He has an alien biology and ages in a completely different way than a human being. Different aspects of his growth may take longer or shorter than a human’s.”

This makes sense actually. We had adult Groot in Vol. 1, Baby Groot in Vol. 2, and now teenaged Groot in the Avengers two-parter. By the time Guardians Vol. 3 rolls around Groot will be an adult again and we may even get to see King Groot on the big screen (although I was kind of hoping to see that in Infinity War).

Jeremy has been active on the web since the 90s. He's written for sites such as IGN and Furious Fanboys and even once worked on Star Wars Galaxies (RIP). A long time ago in a galaxy far far away he used to Podcast about Star Wars with friends.

SDCC 2017: Nearing the Half-Way Point

I am writing this from the Hall H line at around 3:00pm. So we still have about five and a half hours until wristbands are handed out for Saturday’s panels and even longer than that until they get to our section of the line.

So far I’ve had a good SDCC. The highlight so far was the Walter & Louise Simonson panel yesterday, which should’ve been three hours long. So many great answers to fan questions and some cool stories about great Marvel storylines.

A close runner up to that would be the Classic Doctor Who panel with Peter Davidson and Colin Baker. I didn’t know about the BBC/ITV streaming service Britbox, but that panel made me sign up for a trial for the Classic Doctor Who they have on it.

The con itself is pretty packed this year and it keeps getting worse every year. The Hall H line is even worse than it was last year where my group was put into group B and this year it looks like we’ll lucky to get into group C.

Trying to conserve battery as much as possible before tomorrow but I plan to Tweet live from Hall H as much as I can. I have a 15,000 mAh battery for my phone and it should only be halfway done by the time I go back to the hotel in about 12 hours, and I’ll get it a little more charge then before coming back to the line.

In other news it looks like Furious Fanboys is down. I’ve emailed them about it, but haven’t heard any news yet. This is the worst time for the site to go down, and I think this final downtime may be its death.

Jeremy has been active on the web since the 90s. He's written for sites such as IGN and Furious Fanboys and even once worked on Star Wars Galaxies (RIP). A long time ago in a galaxy far far away he used to Podcast about Star Wars with friends.

Thanos’ Black Order Arrive in the MCU With Infinity War

Created by Hickman during his absolutely epic run on Avengers (and starring in the Infinity event), Thanos’ Black Order is making the jump to the MCU faster than almost any other comic character has.

Marvel revealed statues of the four at D23 Expo this weekend, and the designs are comic perfect. All have their correct names, although Black Dwarf has been renamed Cull Obsidian, and I can understand that change. Some people are really dumb and won’t bother to realize he’s named after a type of Black Hole (the whole team is) so there is bound to be someone who gets really offended at the name.

I took pics of each statue, and these have only been resized down due to being on a website. I’ll try to find a way to post the full 24MP pictures later, but here is the Black Order from D23 Expo, and yes that is what Thanos was wearing in the Infinity War footage (although with the Gauntlet):

Jeremy has been active on the web since the 90s. He's written for sites such as IGN and Furious Fanboys and even once worked on Star Wars Galaxies (RIP). A long time ago in a galaxy far far away he used to Podcast about Star Wars with friends.

My Tentative D23 Expo 2017 Schedule

It’s almost always futile to try to put together a schedule for a big convention (especially SDCC), but with how well Disney runs D23 Expo and the lines you can actually do that especially if you’ve been to the convention before. I’ve been to every D23 Expo, and Disney improves on their line handling every year, so this is basically what I have planned for the weekend:

Disney Legends Ceremony & Animation and Pixar presentation.

It IS possible to do both of those. I’ve done it every year. Once the Legends ceremony ends you run right over to get in line for the Animation presentation. You don’t get seats near the front, we were in the back last year, but you’re still able to get in line for Hall D23.

Live Action presentation & Parks panel

Same thing as Friday. Camp out over night for the first panel of the day, and then immediately run over to get in line for the next one.

This is the day I’ll hit the floor to check out the exhibits and then go to the Legends of Imagineering panel at 6:00.

The big Hall D23 presentations for Animation and Live Action don’t allow any sort of recording devices inside. Phones are sealed in thick static bags and all bags and cameras are confiscated. The Legends ceremony and other panels do allow cameras and such inside so I’ll be able to take pictures there, and I plan to take quite a lot.

SDCC next week is a little more open for me as the only thing I’m 100% planning to do is Hall H all day on Saturday.

Jeremy has been active on the web since the 90s. He's written for sites such as IGN and Furious Fanboys and even once worked on Star Wars Galaxies (RIP). A long time ago in a galaxy far far away he used to Podcast about Star Wars with friends.

The Difference Between D23 Expo And Other Conventions

D23 Expo kicks off this week and I’ll be headed over there Thursday night to camp out for the Legends Ceremony on Friday morning, but there’s one thing people don’t quite understand about what D23 Expo is. While lots of film bloggers are overhyping their readers with promises of what Marvel may show at SDCC, they fail to realize that on D23 Expo years they traditionally save their best stuff for that convention.

Disney only holds D23 Expo every two years and it’s basically their version of Comic Con or Star Wars Celebration, but for Disney fans. And that’s where it gets a bit different. Anyone who has an AP at Disneyland can tell you of the “Passhole” phenomenon of overly entitled Disney fans who believe they deserve the world on a silver platter, and at D23 Expo that is amplified. There are “Sorcerer” packages that cost into the thousands of dollars, and on top of that these people spend about $100 a year for their annual D23 Fan Club membership card.

Update: I’m not meaning to point fingers at the Sorcerers. I was using them to illustrate that people do pay a lot of money to be at D23 and Disney treats them the way they should be. Disney runs D23 better than ANY other convention, because they realize that people pay good money to be there and they’ll hear about it if they’re not treated right.

That’s why what Disney shows at D23 Expo remains exclusive. If anything wasn’t exclusive just for those people who spend a lot of money with Disney, they’d riot and scream at Disney for not treating them like special snowflakes. That’s one of the reasons why they seal phones in static bags before the big presentations and confiscate all cameras. Nothing from D23 Expo ever leaks. In 2015 they showed the first footage from Civil War, and that did leak online, but the leak didn’t come from the Expo floor. It was from some other source months after the convention.

Having said that, if anything were to be released online officially from the 2017 convention; it’ll be the Behind the Scenes sizzle reel for The Last Jedi. None of the Marvel stuff will likely make it online.

Jeremy has been active on the web since the 90s. He's written for sites such as IGN and Furious Fanboys and even once worked on Star Wars Galaxies (RIP). A long time ago in a galaxy far far away he used to Podcast about Star Wars with friends.