What does a December release mean for a "Star Wars" film?



In practical terms, nothing. The film is the film. There won't be any difference in the film just because they're releasing it on a different date. But in terms of sentiment, it's a huge deal for "Star Wars" fandom, and more than anything, this would seem to announce clearly that this is not all going to be out doing everything the same way it's always been done.

Recently, there was word of a behind-the-scenes struggle between Robert Iger and Kathleen Kennedy over the release date of "Star Wars: Episode VII," with the producer pushing for a possible 2016 release. A December date in 2015 seems to be the best possible compromise, giving director JJ Abrams and his entire creative team more room to get the script ready and put the right amount of polish on the universe.

The truth is they've been working on this film for a while now, and while they may not have been making tons of public announcements and they may not already have a full teaser trailer campaign and casting announcements and tons of details, that doesn't mean that they're "behind" in anything. There has been a fair bit of doomsaying online already about the film, but much of what I've read has not matched up to what I'm hearing from people working in various capacities on the movie. It seems to me like that they're pretty close to ready to go, and the teams that have to be working already to pull off the elaborate action sequences and that hope to build the amazing fantasy worlds that are part of any "Star Wars" movie are all working hard right now, and progress is definitely being made.

There is so much irrational anger that surrounds any mention of "Star Wars" that I would argue you have to tune it out right now. Yes, it is true… there are bad "Star Wars" films. And, yes, if you wrote film coverage between 1997 and 2005, the words "Star Wars" probably make you twitch from sheer PTSD. But that doesn't mean that every single word written now requires you to tell anyone who still likes "Star Wars" how stupid they are, and it certainly doesn't mean you have to incessantly beat the drum that these films will be terrible. That seems like a terrible approach in general, and I'm guessing that whatever these films are, they'll surprise you in some way.

The news broke on Star Wars.com, the official site for the films, and so far, they've been the only source of information that I completely trust on these new films.

"Star Wars Episode VII" is now set to open in theaters December 18, 2015.