With The Force Awakens having grabbed north of $ 2 billion at the worldwide box office, it’s hardly surprising that Disney CEO Bob Iger has confirmed there’ll be even more Star Wars movies after 2019, to follow up the already- announced standalone Rogue One and Han Solo films, and of course, Episodes VIII and IX.
“There are five Star Wars films – four more [ after] The Force Awakens – that are in varying stages of development and production,” Iger told the BBC’s Newsbeat. “There will be more after that, I don’t know how many, I don’t know how often.”
Alas, it looks like we’ll be waiting longer than originally expected to find out whether Luke Skywalker actually has anything to say to Rey on his remote island retreat – Episode VIII has been moved back from its original May slot to a 15 December 2017 berth, turning Star Wars into an annual Christmas treat. If it worked for The Lord Of The Rings...
But despite that delay, the movie has started shooting with Rian Johnson at the helm, while Disney has confirmed the return of most of the original cast. There’s no mention of Harrison Ford and – more surprisingly – Peter Mayhew, but it does look like Kylo Ren, Captain Phasma and General Hux made it off Starkiller Base in one piece, as all three actors are back. There are also three fresh faces confirmed for the movie: Benicio del Toro, newcomer Kelly Marie Tran and Jurassic Park’s Laura Dern.
Luckily we don’t need to wait until Episode VIII to learn more about Empire tribute act the First O rder. Claudia Gray’s new novel Bloodline ( due May) is set a few years before The Force Awakens, and features Leia the senator realising the New Republic hasn’t learned any lessons from the Rebellion and the E mpire. Ain’t that always the way...
She’ll be back.