Since Disney purchased Lucasfilm in 2012, they'll been on a steady roll of releasing Star Wars films, reigniting the franchise in 2015 with Episode VII: The Force Awakens, followed by 2016's Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and 2017's Episode VIII: The Last Jedi. In May 2018, just six months after VII, came Solo: A Star Wars Story. On the horizon now is Episode IX, from returning director J.J. Abrams, on Dec. 20, 2019. After that, Star Wars is likely to blossom into a wider, MCU-style film-and-TV universe.
But Disney CEO Bob Iger might be regretting the rollout. "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 The Hollywood Reporter. Less than a month after Solo began a less-than-amazing box office run, word arrived that Lucasfilm was pumping the brakes on all its planned anthology films, which reportedly included A Star Wars Story entries for Obi-Wan Kenobi, Boba Fett, Yoda, and/or Lando Calrissian. Iger's official word to THR? "You can expect some slowdown, but that doesn't mean we're not going to make films. J.J. is busy making IX. We have creative entities, including [Game of Thrones creators David] Benioff and [D.B.] Weiss, who are developing sagas of their own, which we haven't been specific about."
Episode IX, concluding a third trilogy and apparently set to conclude "the Skywalker story," is the whole focus right now. "And we are just at the point where we're going to start making decisions about what comes next after J.J.'s," Iger said. "But I think we're going to be a little bit more careful about volume and timing. And the buck stops here on that."
This sentiment has also been expressed by Mark Hamill, who previously questioned Disney for oversaturating the market. The Force Awakens remains the No. 1 domestic film of all time with $936.6 million and No. 3 worldwide with a wild $2.07 billion. Rogue One dipped to $1.06 billion, Last Jedi cooked up $1.33 billion to become No. 11 of all time worldwide. Then Solo made a comparably meager $393 million globally, off a budget reportedly in the $275-300 million range.
During the THR interview, Iger also took the time to address Disney's $71.3 billion acquisition of most of 21st Century Fox, which will give the Marvel Cinematic Universe access to Marvel Comics characters like Deadpool and the X-Men. Asked if that's set to happen, Iger said, "I think it only makes sense. I want to be careful here because of what's been communicated to the Fox folks, but I think they know. It only makes sense for Marvel to be supervised by one entity. There shouldn't be two Marvels."
Check out the full chat here.