Star Wars: Episode VIII Has Begun Filming in Ireland

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Early Episode VIII Filming

Just under one hundred days before the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the crew of Episode VIII has set up shop on Skellig Michael island in Ireland to begin filming.

While actual shooting was planned for Monday, those plans were scrapped due to bad weather at the site. High winds caused the boats to be unable to reach the island. They are apparently slated to be there for this entire week, so they have given themselves plenty of time to get the shots they need in case the weather remains unfriendly.

A reporter in Ireland Tweeted out these images of security and a sign to the unit base. Despite her using the “Force Awakens” hash tag, the filming is for Episode VIII as Rian Johnson has been spotted on location:

Lights! Camera! Action! For more watch @IrelandLive #StarWars #StarWarsTheForceAwakens #Valentia #SkelligMichael pic.twitter.com/dje87SUgU9

— Alison Nulty (@alisonnulty) September 14, 2015

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While JJ Abrams likes to film his movies in sequence (meaning they shoot the scenes in the order they’re scripted), it’s unknown if Rian Johnson does the same. While Skellig Michael features in the final scene of The Force Awakens, it’s likely it isn’t the first scene in Episode VIII. The filming at that location at this specific time is due to the limited access period of the World Heritage Site that the island is. If they didn’t begin filming there now, they’d have to wait until late next year and that would be too late for the movie that’s due out in May 2017.