Based on a number of reports about the behind the scenes activities for ‘Star Wars: Episode VII’, there seems to be a disturbance in the force. Earlier this month, screenwriter Michael Arndt exited the project in favor of director J.J. Abrams and ‘The Empire Strikes Back’ writer Lawrence Kasdan taking over scripting duties. While this sort of thing is fairly common for big films, the bigger problem seems to be the time frame.
According to the latest news, producer Kathleen Kennedy and most of the film’s creative team attempted to say that the summer 2015 release date for the next installment in the ‘Star Wars’ franchise was not the release date Disney was looking for, but the force is strong in CEO Robert Iger, who would not budge at all. The crew was looking for a push to 2016, but it looks as if that’s off the table because “Iger has crafted a ‘Star Wars’ game plan that hinges on ‘Episode VII’ hitting the big screen that summer”. That plan probably intends for a big box office in the summer (even with competition from ‘The Avengers: Age of Ultron’, ‘Superman Vs. Batman’, and ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2’ scheduled for that time), huge disc sales in the fall, and all sorts of merchandising around the holidays. Then, the first of the spinoff films was meant to hit theaters in 2016. But of course, none of that could be possible if the film isn’t released when it was originally intended.
Despite the huge amount of pressure on multiple fronts and reports that the script is nowhere near ready, Abrams seems to be in line with Iger’s vision of the future for the franchise and believes that they can still meet the 2015 deadline. Hopefully, the filmmaker can pull it all together in a way that still maintains the quality that we’ve come to expect from him because, by the sounds of things, all Iger is worried about is pleasing share holders and milking the studio’s latest major acquisition for every penny possible. Rushing a script of this magnitude usually isn’t the way to go, and ‘Star Wars’ has already taken a few hits thanks to the less than stellar prequel trilogy, so hopefully this creative chokehold on ‘Episode VII’ doesn’t affect the film too much.
Do you think that ‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ will be ready by summer 2015? Should Bob Iger allow for the project to be delayed in order to get the best product possible? And do you think that J.J. Abrams is working too hard and deserves a nap? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter