Star Wars Episode VIII release date pushed back to December 2017, Rian Johnson doing rewrites


Star Wars Episode VIII was originally going to be released on May 26, 2017, but now the film has been pushed back seven months. The new release date for Star Wars 8 is December 15, 2017. Rian Johnson is still set to begin production on Star Wars Episode VIII next month as planned.

While there is no official word on the Star Wars Episode VIII delay, there are two reasonable guesses about what caused it.

For one, this may be a strategic move by Disney to release the film in the winter rather than the summer. This ensures that Star Wars won’t get lost in the week-to-week blockbuster rollout from May through July, boosting its chances of box office dominance in the process. It also places a full year of time between Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and another Star Wars film–a way of avoiding the Star Wars equivalent of an ice cream headache.

Another reason could be to accommodate some rewrites. Rian Johnson’s screenplay for Star Wars 8 apparently introduced a number of new characters to the Star Wars mythos. Given the success of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and the popularity of the new characters introduced in that film, Johnson is retooling his script to shrink the roles of the new characters he wanted to introduce and focus more on Rey, Finn, Poe, Kylo, Maz, and company.

If anything, Star Wars might become an end-of-the-year tradition. Sort of like Life Day.

What do you think about Star Wars being pushed back a few months and the rewrites in progress?

[via AV Club, io9]

Hubert Vigilla
Brooklyn-based fiction writer, film critic, and long-time editor and contributor for Flixist. A booster of all things passionate and idiosyncratic.