Star Wars: 'Day one' filming begins

Bad Robot Twitter feed The image showed the clapper board being used on the first day of filming

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The latest Star Wars film franchise has begun shooting, production company Bad Robot has announced on Twitter.

The film company, founded by the movie's director JJ Abrams, tweeted a picture of a branded clapper board with the hashtag "#dayone".

A dusting of sand on the picture appears to confirm initial scenes are being shot in Abu Dhabi.

On Wednesday, actor Oscar Isaac told BBC Radio 4's Front Row that production was due to start this month.

The 34-year-old said: "The whole process is under way. We're shooting in the studios here in London."

Isaac was one of the new cast members announced for the film in April, alongside Daisy Ridley and John Boyega.

Recently seen in Inside Llewyn Davis, the actor said his family were "very excited" by his latest role.

"My uncle and my cousin have galleries of the Star Wars toys they've collected," he told Kirsty Lang.

Andy Serkis talks to the BBC's Lizo Mzimba about the new Star Wars at the X Men premiere

"So once I told them I had been cast, he nearly fainted, my uncle. He got sweaty and pale. He was very excited.

"The idea that I could be a toy for him is the craziest thing."

Little is known about Isaac's role in Star Wars: Episode VII, and the actor admitted he was under strict orders not to reveal details.

Star Wars cast A picture of the new Star Wars cast was released by director JJ Abrams last month

However he spoke about being cast in the movie by director JJ Abrams, saying he had been called to a meeting in Paris earlier this year.

"I'm a huge Star Wars fan but at the same time I'm defensively pessimistic, so I assumed that maybe it was a different project," he said.

Once Abrams confirmed the meeting was about Star Wars, Isaac said he "tried to play it cool - but, I mean, it was clear I was just so excited he wanted me to be a part of the whole thing."

The actor also confessed he used to dress up as characters from the outer space blockbuster franchise as a child.

"Not as a Jedi Knight," he stressed, "but I dressed up as a gonk droid a couple of times.

"I liked the tertiary characters or the ones you don't necessarily look at. I was a huge Boba Fett fan."

The film will be the first Star Wars title released by Disney, after creator George Lucas sold the rights to the franchise in 2012.

It will also see the return of the three principal characters from the original trilogy - Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) and Han Solo (Harrison Ford).

Oscar Isaac Oscar Isaac has been in films including Che, Drive and Inside Llewyn Davis

Earlier this year, Guatemalan-born Isaac was nominated for several awards, including a best actor Golden Globe, for starring in the Coen Brothers' folk music drama Inside Llewyn Davis.

He told Front Row the accolades led directly to his latest role, in the thriller The Two Faces of January.

"Early on, before I'd been cast in Llewyn Davies, [director Hossein Amini] had shown me the script because we'd worked together on Drive.

"At the time there was very little chance I'd be cast - but once I was cast in Llewyn Davies, that opened up a lot of doors."

The Two Faces Of January Isaac currently stars in The Two Faces Of January, alongside Viggo Mortensen and Kirsten Dunst

Laughing, he added: "They couldn't get the money to make the movie with some weirdo named Oscar."

"It's kind of crazy that's how it works, but that's how it's worked for a very long time."

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