Sunday, July 19, 2015

Star Wars: Another Marvel Movie Machine

Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force Awakens is due out this December.

In comparison with both the original trilogy, and the prequels, the current plan has the films coming out more rapidly--another movie every two years rather than every three.

And in the off-years, it seems, there will be non-trilogy Star Wars films. Rogue One is expected out next year, and two more untitled projects--one about Han Solo (due out 2018), another about Boba Fett (date unannounced, but somehow I don't think they're leaving it to the 2020s).

Assuming all the projects materialize, this could mean a half dozen live-action Star Wars films in the next four and a half years or so.

It seemed that what happened with Marvel Studios--the transformation of its intellectual property into a growing number of inter-linked franchises making up mega-franchises like the Avengers--is happening also with the Star Wars franchise (with the declaration of the Expanded Universe non-canonical "Legends" helping to clear the path for this course of action).

Audiences have been happy to go along with the massive output of Marvel movies so far, the popularity of movies about Big Name Marvel superheroes (and superheroes in general) enduring without break far, far longer than I ever imagined it would. It is fifteen years this month since X-Men came out in 2000--which means that there are now adults who literally have no memory of a time when X-Men movies with Patrick Stewart, Hugh Jackman and company weren't a semi-annual event, an idea that seems to me more bizarre than anything I've actually seen in an X-Men movie. And the executives clearly expect it to go strong for a few years more, longer in fact than any previous action movie trend of the last half century (James Bond-style spies, disaster movies, loose cannon cops, shark movies, space movies, Rambo-style commandos).

However, will there be an audience for so much not just of space opera (toward which viewers have been so much more fickle), but specifically this one franchise?

Despite having proven wrong about moviegoers' appetite for superheroes, I have to admit I'm doubtful about this.

What do you think?

My Posts on Superheroes
My Posts on Star Wars

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