I thought about writing an open letter to Bob Iger the CEO of Disney. According to rumors Iger rejected J.J. Abrams’s request to push Episode VII‘s release back to May of 2016 twice.
Abrams first made the request when the production encountered story issues. He more recently made the request after Harrison Ford broke his leg, an injury that could require months to heal. Instead of altering the production schedule or completely changing the story, Abrams asked for more time. Iger allegedly rejected Abrams’s proposal and wants to stick to the December 18, 2015 release date.
I would love to see Episode VII pushed into 2016. I thought that the production could have used more time even before Harrison Ford’s injury. Now I’m even more concerned that Abrams won’t have enough time to create the Star Wars movie he wants to make, both for himself and the fans.
As far as Iger is concerned, though, he needs to start making back some of his $4 billion investment in Lucasfilm. When Disney first purchased Lucasfilm it announced that Episode VII would hit theaters in 2015. In order to keep investors and boards happy, I’m sure Iger is holding tightly to the December 18, 2015 date.
Whether Episode VII comes out in 2015 or 2016 it is going to make a lot of money. A lot of people didn’t enjoy the prequels but they were still some of the most successful movies of all time.
Episode I made over $1 billion worldwide.
Episode II made nearly $650 million worldwide.
Episode III made nearly $850 million worldwide.
So whether or not J.J. Abrams gets more time to make the movie he wants, Episode VII is still going to turn a profit. As a CEO for a major corporation with shareholders to appease, Iger might be more concerned with making a lot of money with a good movie in 2015 than making just as much money with a great movie in 2016.
For fans it seems like an easy enough decision: push Episode VII back six months so that it can be awesome. Iger knows, though, that all of those same fans will still buy tickets to multiple showings if Episode VII comes out as planned. And even if Disney wastes all of its good will as Star Wars’ savior, we’ll still line up for Episodes VIII and IX and all of the spin-offs.
Unfortunately there are some worries with Episode VII. Hopefully J.J. Abrams can figure it out, whether that means pushing the release back or figuring a way to work around Harrison Ford’s injury. I desperately want Episode VII to be awesome but, even if it’s not, I’ll still watch it. A fact that isn’t lost on Iger, his board or his shareholders.
What worries do you have about Episode VII?