Star Wars companion film Black Angel will be made into a full movie

Last month, the short film that accompanied screenings of Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back back in 1980 found itself back in the headlines when negatives of Black Angel were discovered years after the film was believed to have been lost. Now, that 27-minute film directed by set director Roger Christian is becoming a full, feature-length movie 35 years after it first premiered, with Christian at the helm.

Christian posted the original, restored film online last month accompanied by both an introduction from the Oscar-winning set designer, and a tease that more news regarding the dark, medieval fantasy was on the way.

“It’s my passion project, has been for 35-36 years,” Christian told The Hollywood Reporter. “I guess ‘patience is a virtue’ is a true saying.”

The feature-length version of Black Angel, which follows a knight who returns home from the Crusades only to discover that his home and the surrounding town have been threatened by supernatural forces, will begin production later this year in Scotland, with additional shooting in Hungary, Morocco, and Belgium. Two well-known sci-fi and genre actors are also attached to the film, with Blade Runner actor Rutger Hauer and Raiders of the Lost Ark actor John Rhys-Davies cast in unspecified roles.

While the original short film was made for around $38,000, the feature-length adaptation will have a bit more generous of a budget — something around $15 million, according to Christian.

“I can make a huge epic film with that,” said Christian in an interview about the feature-length Black Angel movie. “I’m going down and dirty, I want the audience to smell the blood and the sweat and the tears. I’ll be doing fights in mud and rain.”

Although George Lucas himself commissioned the original Black Angel to accompany The Empire Strikes Back, the Star Wars creator won’t be involved with the feature-length film, according to Christian. An IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign was launched earlier this week to bring additional funding to the project, with perks that include a role as a member of the Demon King’s army in the film.

“It kind of happened – serendipity of the universe – as J.J. [Abrams] was about to start filming [The Force Awakens], so it became this legendary story of a lost piece of Star Wars history,” said Christian of his little film’s new-found popularity more than three decades after it was first screened for audiences.

No word has yet been given as to when production for Black Angel will begin, but we’ll be keeping an eye out for updates so stay with us.

Movies & TV

An Obi-Wan Kenobi TV series might be headed to Disney Plus

Disney is bringing the full weight of its massive content library to its own streaming service in 2019. How will Disney Plus compare to Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime? Here's what we know so far.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in December, from 'Buster Scruggs’ to 'Roma'

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.
Movies & TV

J.J. Abrams wraps production on Star Wars: Episode IX with a heartfelt message

Star Wars: The Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams has wrapped production on Star Wars: Episode IX, which he directed and co-wrote. Here's everything we know about the movie before it premieres in December 2019.
Movies & TV

Best new shows and movies to stream: Deadpool 2, The Umbrella Academy, and more

Need something to watch this weekend? Check out our list of the best new shows and movies to stream right now. On the list this week: Deadpool 2, The Umbrella Academy, Lorena, and more.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (February 2019)

Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be an undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.
Movies & TV

How Avengers: Infinity War’s Oscar-nominated VFX team made Thanos a movie star

The purple-skinned Thanos proved to be a breakout character in Avengers: Infinity War, thanks to the work of actor Josh Brolin and visual effects studios Digital Domain and Weta. Here's how they brought him to life and earned the film an…
Business

Alita: Battle Angel’s big opening weekend leads weak holiday box office

New box-office champion Alita: Battle Angel outperformed expectations with its big premiere and positive reviews from critics, but Presidents' Day weekend is still off to a slow start.
Deals

FA Cup: Watch Chelsea vs. Manchester United with ESPN Plus 7-day free trial

Chelsea and Manchester United are facing off in an exciting FA Cup match, with the fifth round - a tie match - slated for Monday. Die-hard fans of English football can stream the game anywhere at any time with ESPN Plus, and here's how to…
Movies & TV

Netflix completes its breakup with Marvel, cancels The Punisher, Jessica Jones

Two of Netflix's last-remaining Marvel shows have been canceled by the video streaming service. The Punisher is done after two seasons and Jessica Jones will be finished after its still-unreleased third season.
Movies & TV

Bill and Ted 3 celebrates the franchise's 30th birthday with excellent teaser

As the Bill and Ted franchise turns 30, a third installment that the cast and creative team call Bill and Ted Face the Music is officially in preproduction, though there are big hurdles to overcome.
Movies & TV

Why First Man’s Oscar-nominated visual effects are a giant leap for filmmaking

Paul Lambert, the award-winning visual effects supervisor on First Man, reveals the innovative techniques that blended old footage with modern movie magic to make the Apollo 11 mission to the moon resonate with audiences 50 years later and…
Movies & TV

Amazon's Lord of the Rings series gets an interactive map of Middle-earth

Amazon Studios is betting big on its Lord of the Rings prequel series, which has a multiseason commitment and a budget of more than $1 billion. The series' first season will arrive by 2021.
Movies & TV

Here’s how to watch the 2019 Oscars livestream online

The 91st Academy Awards will air live on ABC, but there are also a number of ways to watch Hollywood's biggest night online using your mobile device, desktop, or set-top streamer. Here's how to catch the Oscars livestream.