Kinberg Divulges Details About 'Star Wars' Brain Trust

During an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Simon Kinberg discussed his role in Disney's rapidly expanding universe of "Star Wars" films. Kinberg is already involved with a number of big name franchises -- including, most notably, Fox's "X-Men" and "Fantastic Four" properties. Despite those time-consuming ties, Kinberg made room on his schedule to travel to a galaxy far, far away -- or, in reality, Skywalker Ranch in California.

Kinberg, along with writers Michael Arndt ("Toy Story 3") and "Star Wars" vet Lawrence Kasdan, spent a week at the Ranch working on the structure of the impending trilogy as well as outlining stories for the next batch of standalone spin-off films.

"Like a TV writers room, we spent a week with a whiteboard and some pens and were in a conference room all day talking about [movies] 'VII,' 'VIII,' and 'IX,'" said Kinberg. "But it's a whiteboard covered in our notes. We had a sense of what we each wanted to write. It was the most magical time because we were writing 'Star Wars' movies. Then we would go back to the inn at Skywalker and have dinner and drink a little bit and Larry would tell me and Michael stories about the moment in his life where he wrote 'Raiders of the Lost Ark,' 'The Empire Strikes Back,' 'The Big Chill,' 'Body Heat' all in the span of, I think, five years. So we just had this crazy, magical time together."

In addition to the upcoming trilogy, the first of which boasts a screenplay co-written by Kasdan and director J.J. Abrams, Kinberg has also been rumored to write one of the upcoming standalone Anthology films. Rumors from earlier this year stated that he may take over from departing writer Gary Whitta on 2016's "Star Wars Anthology: Rogue One."

Kinberg's influence will be felt on this year's "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," however. "I'm like a friend of the court," said Kinberg. "I consult on the movies. I worked on 'VII,' helped break the story, read scripts, drafts at certain points, and gave my thoughts whatever they were worth."

"Star Wars: The Force Awakens" opens on December 18.

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