Category: Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens

The Mainstream’s Most Beloved Misfit

With roles in three of 2015’s biggest projects — Game of Thrones, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 2, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens — the actor has the kind of platform she always dreamed of. Now, Christie tells BuzzFeed News how she was repeatedly told it would never happen.

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BUZZFEED – Gwendoline Christie really, really, really loves Star Wars.

 

The proof of her undying adoration — besides the repeated gushing (“It’s amaaaaazing!” “I just love it so much.” “Isn’t it the best?”) — came when she encountered a truly rare sight: R2D2, C3PO, and BB-8 all huddled together in a hallway during the recent Star Wars: The Force Awakens press day Los Angeles.

 

“Oh my god, is this happening?!?” she squealed as the trio, in unison, slowly made their way toward her. “I’m really freaking out right now.”
As Christie greeted the droids with a reverence normally reserved for heads of state — “Hi, how are you? It’s lovely to see you!” — she continued to sporadically scream the kind of unadulterated joy anyone who has encountered a beloved Hollywood icon knows all too well. And as Christie posed for a photo with all three, she repeated, under her breath, “No. I can’t believe this. This isn’t real.”

 

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But it was.

 

That impromptu robot convergence was simply the latest in a long string of “pinch me” moments the 37-year-old actor has experienced since winning the role of fierce warrior Brienne of Tarth on HBO’s insanely popular Game of Thrones in 2012. Since then, she appeared in Liongate’s acclaimed The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 2 as Commander Lyme and now finds herself in the hotly anticipated Star Wars sequel, The Force Awakens, playing the evil Captain Phasma.

 

But of all of Christie’s recent experiences that she’s struggled to wrap her head around, co-starring in The Force Awakens remains the most inconceivable. “I still can’t believe I’m here talking to you about being in the new Star Wars movie,” she told BuzzFeed News, every other word punctuated with a verbal exclamation point. “I remember seeing [A New Hope] when I was about 6 years old and my family presented it to me as, ‘This is Star Wars.’ There was so much excitement and they kept saying, ‘You’re going to love this.’ And I did. I loved it from the opening titles.”

 

Christie spoke lovingly about the film’s visual flair, enthralling action, and beautifully hopeful message, but what resonated most deeply with her young self was that, for the first time, she felt like the misfits were the heroes.

 

“I always felt like a bit of an outsider and here was this group of people that were all very unique in their own way, on an exciting journey together, and are getting along,” the 6-foot-3-inch actor said. “It was that combination of unique characters and misfits coming together in the pursuit of good and it being funny.”

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Gwendoline Christie Is The Funniest Stormtrooper You’ll Ever Meet

imageREFINERY29 – Gwendoline Christie wants to know all about my first time.

 

“When did you first see Star Wars?” she asks, leaning over the table where we’re seated, her bright blue eyes wide. I tell her it was approximately one zillion years ago, when I was about 3, and the campus hangout of the college town I grew up in had snagged a bootleg copy.

 

“And what did you think of it?” she asks.

 

I explain that my little mind was blown, particularly by Princess Leia and Chewbacca. Then, conscious of the seconds ticking by in our allotted time to discuss all things Star Wars: The Force Awakens, I suggest that we shouldn’t be wasting time on me when there’s so much I want to ask her.

 

“But I’m genuinely interested!” Christie says with such conviction that I believe her. “I really am. People have such a big investment, such a big emotional investment in the film, and I want to see if there’s a common element.”

 

Christie, 37, has vivid memories of her own introduction to a galaxy far, far away, via Episode IV — A New Hope. “I first saw the film when I was 6. It was Christmas, and I think it’s the first Christmas I remember. I completely fell in love with it. What’s fascinating, I think, is that I still love it as much as I did then. It still moves me, it still fills me with awe and excitement, and it still really makes me laugh.”

 

And what a laugh it is. The British actress — who plays the nefarious Captain Phasma in the new Star Wars and, of course, heroic Brienne of Tarth on Game of Thrones — has an absolutely delightful one that erupts frequently during our conversation. Here’s how it went.

 

It’s an exciting time.

“I can’t believe any of this is happening.”

 

You’ve been in the swirl of a mega franchise for a few years now with Game of Thrones. Is this just a much bigger deal?

“I can’t believe it every time I have a job! [Laughs joyously] And long may that feeling continue!”

 

Speaking of these two worlds you work in, you’re used to secrecy, so I don’t stand a chance here of getting anything out of you, do I?

“Why would you want to? Why would you want to do that? You wouldn’t want to spoil it for people!”

 

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Jimmy Fallon, The Roots & “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” Cast Sing “Star Wars” Medley (A Cappella)

ANA Provides Star Wars Cast with a Customized Charter Flight for the UK Premiere

I also added a few hundred pics to the gallery from the LA premiere. Thanks to Lora for her help.


Gallery Links:

 

 

 

Gwendoline Christie weighs in on Captain Phasma Vs Boba Fett

 

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY – Thirty-five years ago, the world was introduced to a masked villain who said few words but won the hearts and minds of fans by just being so darn cool. He was Boba Fett, and while the character doesn’t appear in The Force Awakens, the new Star Wars film does have its own mysterious evildoer in armor: Gwendoline Christie’s Captain Phasma.

 

Little is known about Captain Phasma’s motivations thus far, but Christie is stoked at the idea of her villain, the Star Wars franchise’s first female antagonist, becoming a fan fave.

 

“I think it would be great if Captain Phasma becomes really popular, because of what she represents,” Christie told EW at the world premiere of Star Wars: The Force Awakens on Monday night. “What she represents to me is very modern in our mainstream media. We have a woman people seem to love and we relate to her character and actions rather than the way she’s been made flesh, due to the armor she wears – which is very practical. That to me seems like a step forward. I’m so grateful I’ve had the opportunity to play this part. People’s enthusiasm for the part of Captain Phasma signals that people want to see something different.”

 

And as for Boba Fett, when asked whether her character would defeat the infamous bounty hunter in a fight, Christie had a better solution.

 

“Imagine what they could do together,” she joked.

 

Star Wars: The Force Awakens World Premiere Presentation & Red Carpet

Gwendoline Christie Tells Us If Captain Phasma Is Worthy of Boba Fett Comparisons

IO9 – The armor is intimidating and awesome. The character, evil and mysterious. It’s no wonder Gwendoline Christie’s First Order stormtrooper Captain Phasma became a fan favorite long before Star Wars: The Force Awakens hits theaters next week.

 

It’s a narrative many might remember from the late 1970s, when a similarly striking Star Wars character was introduced: Boba Fett. So, when we spoke to Gwendoline Christie about playing Captain Phasma last weekend, we asked her how she felt about the comparisons to arguably the most popular and recognizable Star Wars side character.

 

I think that’s fantastic. I mean, I think that Captain Phasma in this movie is a Boba Fett style character in that she is not at the forefront of the action. But she makes a huge impact. And I’m just so grateful to play a character that could possibly ever have that kind of comparison.

 

Besides the allegiance and mystery, the obvious reason for the comparisons are the armors. Boba Fett and Captain Phasma are both in head-to-toe beautifully designed armor, and it was a big deal when Christie first saw it.

 

So exciting. Michael Kaplan, the costume designer—I have been a fan of for a long time. Since I first saw Blade Runner. And I was super excited when I learned that he was working on this movie. So it was no surprise to me that the costumes would be spectacular. But I never expected to get the opportunity to play a character who looked so awesome. I really, really didn’t. And I was told what the character would look like, what she would be wearing. And I was told we’re going to do a costume fitting. But when I walked into the room, I just knew this was spectacular and there was something so striking about this. Something that felt very special. And it was so much fun to put it on for the first time.

 

I’d never dressed up as a Stormtrooper before. And that was really, really fun. But it was very empowering. The costume, because it’s so high functioning, inflexible, imposing, that gives you the actor a lot of qualities immediately to work with.

 

Minor spoilers follow.

 

And while Phasma isn’t in the forefront in this film, according to Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy, that won’t be the case moving ahead. When asked about this spoilery statement from the lady in charge, Christie would only say, “I have been told that by journalists.”

Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ Gwendoline In-Depth on the Honor of Playing Captain Phasma

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COMIC BOOK – Captain Phasma, the “chrome trooper” leader in the villainous First Order, is already a breakout star. Villains in the Star Wars universe have typically been hits with fans, but it seems this one, from the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens, has something special.

 

Disney and its partners have noticed that, too. The top two characters when it comes to accessories, toys, and apparel, are BB-8, the adorable droid, and Phasma. This is all despite the fact that so far we have a total of about 20 seconds (if that) of footage featuring the imposing figure. Action figures, mugs, voice-changing helmets, t-shirts, dresses, statues, pins, and more collectibles are on the market now, with more on the way soon.

 

At 6’3″, actress Gwendoline Christie is no small part of that early success. Bringing the first female villain in a live-action Star Wars adventure to screen is a daunting task, but Christie is much less nervous than she is excited. She uses words like “delighted,” “wonderful,” “sensational,” and said that even while filming, she was “a fan, desperate to see this movie.”

 

Christie sat down with ComicBook.com for a one-on-one interview in a quiet, low-lit room in Los Angeles during the global press day for The Force Awakens. Sitting on a plush white leather couch, the first thing you notice about her is the opposite of Captain Phasma. Where the latter is clad head-to-toe in chrome armor, carrying herself as an imposing figure you instantly know is a leader, Christie herself portrays a different form of confidence. Hers is instantly inspiring and inviting, and with a genuine smile and delightful eye contact, she welcomed and thanked me for coming, as if I was the one doing her the favor.

 

Presented in full, then, is the transcript of our conversation about all things Star Wars: The Force Awakens, from her first reading of the script in a locked room in Pinewood Studios, to the impact her character is already having on an as-yet underserved female Star Wars fanbase.

 

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Gwendoline, the way Captain Phasma has stolen the hearts of people so quickly here, we’ve seen so little of her, but there are already toys and shirts and accessories – what’s that been like for you, seeing the character take off with people right away?

 

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The new acting force behind The Force Awakens

IRISH TIMES – Reboot king JJ Abrams is diversifying the Star Wars universe… Gwendoline Christie, Daisy Ridley and John Boyega on finding new hope in a galaxy far, far away

 

Two months ago, when a new trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens premiered during an American football game on ESPN, fans and curious newcomers reacted with predictable fervour: Ooh, Mark Hamill is still a no-show; has he gone over to the Dark Side?

 

Sadly, the subsequent jubilation on social media platforms was somewhat marred by the nasty little hashtag #Boycott StarWarsVII. For the unlovely architects of this slogan, the appearance of London-born actor John Boyega in the new film was evidence of #whitegenocide and “cultural misappropriation”.

 

Conspiracy theories took note that JJ Abrams, the talent behind the Star Wars reboot, was both Jewish and a “known” Obama supporter. “It’s just Black Lives Matter in Space” shouted one protester into the echo chamber. A petition was duly circulated.

 

Normal folks everywhere, by way of response, sighed or face-palmed before moving on to the next tale of internet crazies: What do you mean, Mad Max: Fury Road has been taken over by the bloody wimmin? #whitemaleextinction.
Ire, in the information age, is hardly novel. But one does have to wonder how deeply buried is the rock that these malcontents are living under. Surely they can’t have failed to notice before now that Darth Vader is voiced by James Earl Jones and Mace Windu is essayed by Samuel L Jackson?

 

Have they seen any work by The Force Awakens director before? Abrams, who scored his first major TV hit with the female-centric Felicity, may have occasionally attracted flak for being too fast and furious with his exciting but unphilosophical Star Trek films or for being overly Spielbergian with Super 8. But no one has ever watched his TV shows and movies and complained that they were insufficiently politically correct.

 

And so Star Wars: The Force Awakens marks a genuine New Hope: a galaxy far, far away where imprisoned, underdressed princesses don’t end up providing ill-defined services to Jabba the Hut.

 

Just ask Gwendoline Christie, who plays Captain Phasma, a role that was originally written for a man but was gender- swapped to facilitate more equitable representation and to make room for the rather wonderful Christie. The actor, by now, is well-accustomed to androgynous military women, having spent several seasons in armour as Game of Thrones’ Brienne of Tarth and having lately stepped out as Commander Lyme in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2.

 

“In film and television, there’s a long tradition of non-essential women,” says Christie. “Being in Game of Thrones, where you are surrounded by well-rounded, brilliant female characters, has taught me a lot.”

 

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‘I’m not sure I’ll Ever Stop Screaming About It’

NMEIn less than a week, Star Wars: The Force Awakens will be out. It’s actually happening. NME met some of the film’s lead actors to chat droids, the Millennium Falcon and Episode VIII. Here’s the third Q&A with Gwendoline Christie, who plays Captain Phasma in the new film.

 

Gwendoline Christie
Age: 37
Star Wars character: Captain Phasma
Captain Phasma in brief: Very little is known about Captain Phasma, with both the producers and Christie remaining tight-lipped about the character. However, we do know that Phasma is a commander in the First Order and in the trailers she is often seen in the company of villain Kylo Ren, making her the franchise’s first major female villain. Exciting stuff.

 

Quite a year you’re having, with Game Of Thrones, the fourth Hunger Games film and now Star Wars.

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