When The Walt Disney Company and Lucasfilm officially announced that the release date for Star Wars Episode VII would be December 18, 2015—rather than the summer of 2015, as originally expected—questions began to swirl about whether the studio was still planning on releasing a Star Wars film every year. After all, earlier this year, we learned that the anticipated release order for the films would be Episode VII in 2015, a spinoff film in 2016, Star Wars Episode VIII in 2017, another spinoff in 2018, and then Star Wars Episode IX in 2019. Disney moving the film back to December in order to give the production more time, however, cast doubt on those lofty expectations.
Earlier today, at Variety's Dealmakers' Breakfast, Disney Studios chairman Alan Horn said that the studio still expects one Star Wars film per year. This includes spinoff films, though he did not say whether it would follow the aforementioned release order. Variety journalist Marc Graser, who was at the event, tweeted about Horn's remarks:
You can practically hear the internet exploding with worry. Though I for one am not that concerned about it, since Disney releases multiple Marvel films per year and that has yet to slow them or moviegoers down, Horn did touch on what his process is for greenlightning a Disney film, which could help alleviate some concerns:
That doesn't discount the economic reality, of course—films are released to make money, and Star Wars films will make money (though, as the conventional wisdom goes, they need to be good Star Wars films moving forward to do that). Nonetheless, nervous fans can at least take some comfort in the fact that part of Disney's economic thinking is "do people want or need to see this movie?" Case in point: I don't think you need to worry over a movie about the adventures of Jar Jar Binks.
What do you think of having one Star Wars film per year? Let us know in the comments below!