Star Wars was originally a summer phenomenon, arriving Memorial Day weekend in 1977, and with Episode VIII, Disney was looking to return to that tradition. But apparently money speaks louder than tradition; Star Wars, at least the central episodes, are now going to be Christmas-time releases.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Disney believes the Christmas release date helped Star Wars: The Force Awakens crush box office records left and right. So, instead of arriving May 26, 2017, Episode VIII will now be debuting December 15, 2017. Yes, you’ve got another two years to wait for answers to all your Star Wars questions.
In the Memorial Day slot instead will be a new Pirates of the Caribbean movie. This also means we’ll see the new Spider-Man slightly earlier: Sony is shifting the next movie from late July to the date the Pirates formerly had staked out, July 7. So, the wall-crawler gets a little-needed breathing room out of the deal, especially because currently The Force Awakens only left the #1 spot after it was out for a month.
The extra time is a good thing. Rian Johnson now has seven extra months to polish up Episode VIII, a movie that’ll be a complex balancing act in the first place. Of course, that also means seven extra months of breathless fan speculation and stress, but hey, nobody said the job was easy.
(via The Hollywood Reporter)