In the midst of the news of Disney’s acquisition of Lucasfilm last fall, it was announced that the studio was looking to release the first in a new trilogy of Star Wars films in 2015. Nearly everyone assumed that the date the studio was aiming for would be May 20th, the Wednesday before Memorial Day Weekend.
Why that date? Well, that Wednesday has been the traditional day that a Star Wars film hits theaters ever since 1977 when the initial film in the franchise opened.
But Badass Digest is hearing that that tradition might be broken with Episode VII and that the studio is currently looking at a date in mid-December of 2015, six months later than what fans were expecting.
Now nothing is official, and the studio hasn’t committed to any date as of right now.
But I can’t say that I blame them.
Currently, 2015 is looking to be a big year for genre films and Episode VII, for all the excitement in the air around it, is just one of several 800-pound gorillas in the room. Just a few weeks before the presumed May release date, Disney has Marvel Studio’s The Avengers: Age Of Ultron opening on May 1. I’ve said before that I wouldn’t be surprised if the studio wanted to give the film some room to dominate at the box office for several weeks, just the same way The Avengers did last summer, and would push off Episode VII accordingly. In June, Disney has the Pixar film Inside Out hitting screens on the 19th and July will see them release the fifth Pirates Of The Caribbean film on the 10th. Even though August is not quite the dumping ground it used to be for films, I still don’t see Disney opening up something as prestigious as a new Star Wars film in that month.
Holding the film until December – where its biggest competitor could possibly be James Cameron’s Avatar 3 but only if he actually gets into production in time to make that date – seems like a sound decision.
And besides, Peter Jackson has shown us that a highly anticipated film trilogy can do pretty well at the box office in December. Still, I have to admit to a touch of melancholy that the franchise that epitomizes (in a godd way) the term “summer movie” won’t be debuting its newest offering in that season.