A new “anklegate” rumor has surfaced from the set of Star Wars: Episode VII. Just over a week ago, Harrison Ford suffered an injury during the production of director J.J. Abrams’ sequel. The severity of the accident was unknown at the time, but it was reported that Ford had possibly broken his ankle. Last week, we not only learned that it was actually Ford’s leg that was broken in the incident, but also that the injury will keep Ford off the set for eight weeks of filming. That’s a substantial amount of time for any production, but with Star Wars—a film in which Ford is said to have a significant leading role—that’s quite a hindrance.
Disney’s initial statement read that shooting would continue as Ford recovers, but a new report has surfaced that claims that production may now be facing a significant delay, putting the December 18, 2015 release date of Episode VII in question. More after the jump.
The folks over at Jedi News (via ScreenCrush) are reporting that a production meeting was called this morning at Pinewood Studios in London in order to discuss how to move forward following Ford’s injury. The site reports that early word is production of Episode VII could be pushed back “by a substantial amount of time”, therefore making the December 2015 release date a questionable prospect.
It’s important to keep in mind that we have heard nothing from Disney or LucasFilm to indicate that filming on Episode VII might be delayed, let alone the release date, so don’t take this as hard fact just yet. However, with Ford out of the picture for two months, some serious production rescheduling will be necessary.
It’s not impossible to work around the injury, as Robert Downey Jr. was sidelined from Iron Man 3 with an ankle injury for two months. The Marvel production shut down for a week, then resumed without Downey Jr., shooting scenes that didn’t involve Stark and using stand-ins for wide shots while Downey Jr. recuperated. A similar gameplan could be utilized on Episode VII (the cast is quite massive), or it’s also possible that Disney might be forced to push the film’s release date to 2016—which would be rather ironic, given that Abrams thought the December 2015 release date was too early in the first place.
Again, this should all be treated as a rumor for now since we’ve had no indication from Disney or LucasFilm that the production schedule of Episode VII has been impacted significantly. That’s not to say the film won’t be delayed, but hopefully we’ll hear more official status updates soon. For now, here’s hoping the rest of Abrams’ shoot goes smoothly.
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