Bad news for Star Wars fans everywhere, you’re going to have to wait a bit longer to see the next installment of the epic space opera.
Empire report Lucasfilm have decided to shift the release date of Star Wars: Episode VIII from May 2017 until December 15 that year.
No official reason has been given for the bump but it’s speculated the film’s been a victim of its own success. Star Wars: The Force Awakens has taken $1.87 billion (£1.32 billion) worldwide so Disney may have shifted the release date to keep that winning formula.
Others have speculated Episode VIII is undergoing significant rewrites, with writer and director Rian Johnson allegedly changing the focus to the new characters Rey, Finn and Poe Dameron. This move could be to accommodate these creative changes.
Interestingly the change of release will put Episode VIII up against Avatar 2 , which is leading to rumours that the long teased sequel to James Cameron’s original Avatar may not be finished in time for its release date.
STAR WARS: EPISODE VIII jumps ship from 5/26/17 and will now launch on 12/15/17.
— Exhibitor Relations (@ERCboxoffice) January 20, 2016
If Avatar 2 is finished in time though we can expect a box-office bloodbath as the two titanic franchises go head to head and test whether audiences would rather invest in a new franchise or stick to something beloved and nostalgic.
Cinema lovers afraid of missing out this year shouldn’t worry though, Disney have already filled the films vacant release spot with… Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales , which will take over the May 26, 2017 spot instead. Joy.
Star Wars fans still have Rogue One: A Star Wars Story to look forward to, which is set for release on December 16 this year, and Disney plan a Star Wars film every year from now until the sun swallows the Earth – or they stop earning money, whichever comes first…