'Star Wars: Episode VII' Will Be Shot By 'Star Trek' Cinematographer Dan Mindel

Big Change In 'Star Wars' Filming

This is probably not the "Star Wars" news fans are looking for, but J.J. Abrams has hired Dan Mindel to be the cinematographer on "Episode VII." Mindel has previously worked with Abrams on the two "Star Trek" films and "Mission: Impossible III." He's also shot films for Tony Scott, Andrew Stanton and Oliver Stone.

Mindel's hire, which was first reported by Boba Fett Fan Club after being announced during an American Society of Cinematographers event, comes with a twist: Abrams plans to shoot "Star Wars: Episode VII" on 35mm film, a change from "Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones" and "Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith," both of which were shot on digital formats.

The old school approach to filming "Episode VII" is likely music to at least one "Star Wars" cast member's ears. "I think there’s nothing wrong with CGI, but I think you have to have a balance, because the camera perceives the width and the depth and the weight -– even if it's a miniature model, the camera just realizes that," Mark Hamill, who is expected to return for "Episode VII" in his familiar role as Luke Skywalker, said earlier this year. "So when you have too much CGI and the clouds are CGI and the trees are CGI and the buildings are CGI, you're getting to a point where the figure in the shot is like a hybrid of an animated film and live-action. And I want it to have an organic look so that we don't get into Roger Rabbit territory. But I don't imagine that the priority is what I want!"

For more on Mindel, head to Boba Fett Fan Club.

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