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New 'Star Wars' Film 'Episode VII' May Get December Release

Tuesday, 20 Aug 2013 07:13 AM

By Alexandra Ward

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Execs at Disney and LucasFilm are rumored to be mulling a mid-December 2015 release date for the new "Star Wars" film – "Episode VII" – rather than a May premiere like the other six films got.

Directed by J.J. Abrams with George Lucas as a consultant, "Star Wars Episode VII" will be the first of the upcoming sequel trilogy. Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, and Mark Hamill are said to be signed on for the new feature to reprise their roles as Princess Leia, Han Solo, and Luke Skywalker.

Industry insiders say switching to a December release date would be a good move for the new "Star Wars," alleviating the pressure from the start-of-summer box office blowout, which will be flooded with films like "The Avengers: Age of Ultron," "Batman vs. Superman," "Pirates of the Caribbean 5," "Independence Day 2," "Assassin's Creed," Pixar's "Inside Out," and possibly "Jurassic Park 4" and "Terminator 5."

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"A move to December would also allow 'Star Wars' to stand alone. Sure, there are other big releases at the end of the year, but taking J.J. Abrams' new chapter in the series out of the summer could easily be marketed as a way to make this movie extra-special, which we're all hoping it is," Don Kaye at MSN Entertainment wrote.

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"Star Wars Episode VII" marks the first joint venture of the new Disney and LucasFilm partnership. Disney famously bought out George Lucas' film company in October 2012 for $4.05 billion.

"It's now time for me to pass 'Star Wars' on to a new generation of filmmakers," Lucas said at the time of the purchase.

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