April 12, 2014 – Two weeks ago, I posted here that Star Wars Episode VII was scheduled to film certain scenes in Iceland, stirring speculation of a return to the ice world Hoth.
Now come reports that we may be returning to Tatooine, the homeworld of Anakin and Luke Skywalker. But instead of filming the dessert scenes in Tunisia, as occurred in previous episodes, the Star Wars crew is about to head to Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates and a relatively new hotspot for Hollywood filmmakers. While Abu Dhabi is a busy metropolis, surrounding deserts in the region could easily provide the sandy desert backdrop of Tatooine.
So why not return to Tunisia in North Africa, the site of past filming for both the original Star Wars trilogy as well as the prequels? After all, some of the sets are still standing, albeit rapidly disappearing by encroaching sand dunes. It may be a matter of politics and the unstable political climate of Tunisia. Thus the decision to head further east to Abu Dhabi.