Tags: star wars vii | opens | dec | 18

'Star Wars VII' Opens Dec. 18 as Holiday Film Season Anchor

Image: 'Star Wars VII' Opens Dec. 18 as Holiday Film Season Anchor Director J.J. Abrams.

By Clyde Hughes   |   Friday, 08 Nov 2013 08:33 AM

Producers of the "Star Wars" reboot have announced what franchise fans have been waiting for; "Star Wars: Episode VII" will hit theaters Dec. 18, 2015.

StarWars.com announced the release date on its website Thursday. 

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"We're very excited to share the official 2015 release date for 'Star Wars: Episode VII,' where it will not only anchor the popular holiday film going season but also ensure our extraordinary filmmaking team has the time needed to deliver a sensational picture," Alan Horn, chairman of The Walt Disney Studios, wrote in the news release.

The release date of the J.J. Abrams-led "Star Wars: Episode VII" is the latest news for the eagerly awaited motion picture. Abrams recently recruited Lawrence Kasdan, veteran of "The Empire Strikes Back" and "Return of the Jedi" along with "Raiders of the Lost Ark," to work on the script with him, according to Deadline.com.

The writing duties previously belonged to Academy Award-winning writer Michael Arndt, who wrote the screenplay for "Hunger Games: Catching Fire" and "Little Miss Sunshine."

"I am very excited about the story we have in place and thrilled to have Larry and J.J. working on the script," Kathleen Kennedy, of LucasFilm, said in a statement. "There are very few people who fundamentally understand the way a Star Wars story works like Larry, and it is nothing short of incredible to have him even more deeply involved in its return to the big screen.

"J.J. of course is an incredible storyteller in his own right. Michael Arndt has done a terrific job bringing us to this point and we have an amazing filmmaking and design team in place already prepping for production," Kennedy added.

Entertainment Weekly reported that there were concerns about the film being pushed back to 2016 because of the script. Horn's comments, however, demonstrate confidence that the Abrams-Kasdan team can finish the new script with their tight deadline.

Because of the "Star Wars" announcement, Disney changed the dates for "Tomorrowland," starring George Clooney and directed by Brad Bird, to May 22, 2015. That film was originally set to be released Dec. 12, 2014, the original release date for "Episode VII."

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