Another day, another report from a source at Lucasfilm that attempts to set the record straight about the future of Star Wars. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the studio is re-thinking their approach to future films from a narrative and marketing standpoint, though this shouldn't spell disaster for the saga's future.
The studio's most recent effort, Solo: A Star Wars Story, is considered a relative critical and financial disappointment. The first three Star Wars films made by Disney, The Force Awakens, Rogue One, and The Last Jedi, all crossed the $1 billion threshold worldwide, yet, after nearly a month in release, Solo has failed to cross $350 million. These numbers are nothing to scoff at, though, compared to its predecessors, it has fallen far short of expectations.
"They haven't slowed down development," a Lucasfilm source shared with The Hollywood Reporter, "but they are licking their wounds."
The underwhelming response to Solo has marked the studio's first misstep since Disney purchased it, which immediately ignited theories about how the project would impact Star Wars' future.
Earlier this week, Collider claimed a source at Lucasfilm revealed that the progress on standalone films, or "Star Wars Stories," would be put on hiatus until Episode IX was finished. Given that there were no announced future standalone films, this merely could have meant the studio would focus on what was announced before confirming other plans.
An insider confirmed that recent reports aren't inherently incorrect, but rather that Lucasfilm wanted to have more concrete approaches to future films before announcing their release dates.
"In light of the reaction to Last Jedi and the performance of Solo, they are now just going to look at what's coming in and seeing how good it is, before dating anything," the insider noted. "It's all pretty understandable."
There's no concrete data to confirm why Solo came up short, with some theories blaming the marketing approach, its release date, and behind-the-scenes woes as contributing factors. Another theory is that, since its announcement, fans just weren't interested in the Han Solo film, despite Lucasfilm thinking they would.
"They were developing anything and everything," one source confessed. "It was a case of them stuffing so much sausage and not try to break the casing."
After Collider's report, a Lucasfilm representative seemingly discredited those reports with ABC News, claiming that multiple unannounced films were still in development.
"It doesn't mean those spinoffs don't happen," a source noted to The Hollywood Reporter. "It just means they're trying to figure out how to make, and market, them differently."
While some might say that these reports contradict one another, all sources could end up being true. The standalone films could be put on the backburner, as Collider claims, while Lucasfilm could still be moving forward with projects that haven't been announced, as they profess. With no announced plans regarding future films, the studio hasn't gone back on their word or shifted release dates.
All sources have echoed that Episode IX, Rian Johnson's trilogy, and Game of Thrones co-creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss' films are all moving forward as scheduled.
Episode IX lands in theaters on December 20, 2019.6comments
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[H/T The Hollywood Reporter]