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'Star Wars: Episode VII' Locked In for Summer 2015 Despite Kathleen Kennedy's Request to Delay

Welcome to the Disney Era of Star Wars. Even though the one-year anniversary of Disney buying Lucasfilm passed on Wednesday with little fanfare (we were hoping for some kind of big announcement), the behind-the-scenes wheels for Star Wars: Episode VII keep moving along.

On Thursday, The Hollywood Reporter reported that Episode VII was still locked in for a summer release in 2015. There have been a lot of false rumors that the next Star Wars film could be pushed to winter or even 2016, but there hasn't been anything to back up those rumors. The Hollywood Reporter's article should put an end to any further talk of a delay.

According to THR, Lucasfilm chief Kathleen Kennedy, who took the reins from George Lucas when he sold his company to Disney, had sought to push back Episode VII into 2016. Disney CEO Bob Iger refused though, not a surprise considering the massive merchandising machine being built around a new Star Wars movie. Even though Disney has The Avengers: Age of Ultron hitting theaters in May 2015 too, Iger's master plan has Episode VII locked in for that month too.

The interesting part of THR's report is that director JJ Abrams has "become autocratic in recent months, wresting some casting control from Kennedy," according to some sources. With the news that Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan had taken over scripting duties from Michael Arndt, this scoop isn't surprising. The person running Star Wars was never a CEO — it was a creative mind. Sure, Lucas shouldn't have been the guy writing dialogue or even directing, but it's hard to knock his storytelling abilities. Having Abrams consolidate power is a good thing for Episode VII, especially with Kasdan, the man responsible for writing The Empire Strikes Back, writing with him.
'Star Wars: Episode VII' Locked In for Summer 2015 Despite Kathleen Kennedy's Request to Delay Reviewed by Bill Kuchman on 10/31/2013 Rating: 5

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