Disney CEO Bob Iger calls annual Star Wars movie releases a ‘mistake’


Disney’s CEO Bob Iger said he’s to blame for the pacing of Star Wars film releases the past few years — but promises he’s going to fix it.

At first, fans were excited about the idea of getting a new Star Wars movie every year. But many have since argued that this release schedule is too much — and the man in charge doesn’t disagree.

Bob Iger spoke with The Hollywood Reporter on all things Disney — including its upcoming streaming service, bringing Fox-owned superheroes into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and what the future of Star Wars movies might look like.

For the past several years, Lucasfilm has been releasing an annual film, starting with The Force Awakens in December 2015 and continuing with Solo: A Star Wars Story this past May.

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Disappointing box office numbers after the release of Solo have suggested — among other things — that Star Wars fans might be feeling burned out on movies after just three years. And though Episode IX is still set to premiere at the end of next year, Iger agrees that the pace may have been set too quickly.

The company’s CEO said he takes the blame for this — and assured fans things would start slowing down after 2019.

“I made the timing decision, and as I look back, I think the mistake that I made — I take the blame — was a little too much, too fast,” he told THR. “You can expect some slowdown, but that doesn’t mean we’re not going to make films.”

Though he didn’t specify exactly what the new timeline might look like, he did remind fans there’s a lot more Star Wars to come — regardless of the pacing.

“We are just at the point where we’re going to start making decisions about what comes next after J.J.’s [film],” he said. “But I think we’re going to be a little bit more careful about volume and timing.”

Game of Thrones creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are already busy developing their own stories. And Rian Johnson’s trilogy is still reportedly in the works.

Two animated series are also on the horizon — Star Wars Resistance, which premieres in early October, and the revival of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, dropping sometime next year.

Whether you’re disappointed with or relieved by this news, there’s plenty of Star Wars material out there to keep you occupied. Marvel just teased new Star Wars comics, and there are several current ongoing series worth checking out.

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And if you’re into books, several new canon novels are set to release early next year.

Looking ahead, this seems like the right move. It might give Lucasfilm the time and resources to make sure all every movie they release is the best it can be. It might even help them avoid drastic, exhaustive, and probably expensive rewrites and reshoots.

And, most importantly, they’ll be able to take all the time they need to produce the Kenobi movie we’re all waiting for — and make it really, really good.

Do you think Iger is making the right decision? Which projects do you hope Lucasfilm starts working on after Episode IX?