Rogue One: A Star Wars Story will be an interesting test of the Star Wars franchise. It’s the first spinoff, and Disney could have a bit of an uphill battle trying to convince people to come out for an entirely new story that’s only loosely connected to the characters they’ve come to love. Star Wars: The Force Awakens was such a huge hit in part because it made sure to integrate popular characters from the original trilogy. By comparison, Rogue One is about a new group of character stealing the Death Star plans, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the marketing for the film does its best to play up Darth Vader’s involvement.
Nevertheless, Disney CEO Bob Iger is bracing people to let them know that Rogue One won’t be as massive as The Force Awakens $2.1 billion global box office. “We never felt it would do the level that Force Awakens did,” Iger tells Variety. But based on the response to the trailers and posters, he said, “The level of interest [in Rogue One] is as high as it was for Force Awakens.”
Despite the production problems plaguing both Force Awakens and Rogue One, Disney is showing no signs of slowing down on their plan to release a Star Wars movie every year for the foreseeable future. Variety also reports that the studio has found a writer for a new spinoff that’s expected to open in 2020. For those who need a brief recap of the release dates for the upcoming Star Wars movies, here’s where we’re at:
- Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – December 16, 2016
- Star Wars: Episode VIII – December 15, 2017
- Untitled Han Solo Star Wars Anthology Film – May 25, 2018 (expect for this to get pushed back to December)
- Star Wars: Episode IX – 2019
- Untitled Star Wars Anthology Film – 2020
Mark your calendars accordingly.