Disney’s CEO says you should get ready for a ‘slowdown’ on ‘Star Wars’ films

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“Solo: A Star Wars Story.”
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Disney

  • Disney CEO Bob Iger has reconsidered his “Star Wars” release strategy in the wake of the disappointing box-office performance of May’s “Solo: A Star Wars Story.”
  • Iger told The Hollywood Reporter in a new interview that “Star Wars” fans could expect “some slowdown” in the production of the series.

It appears the disappointing box-office performance of “Solo: A Star Wars Story” has led Disney CEO Bob Iger to reconsider his release strategy for the “Star Wars” film series.

Iger told The Hollywood Reporter in an interview published Thursday that “Star Wars” fans could expect “some slowdown” in the production of the series, which saw two films, “Solo” and “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” released in the span of five months this past year.

While 2017’s “The Last Jedi” grossed $1.33 billion worldwide and received critical acclaim, the “Solo” spin-off fell way short of box-office expectations in its debut over Memorial Day weekend, ending with a $392 million worldwide gross against a reported $250 million production budget.

“Solo” notably had extended reshoots under director Ron Howard, who replaced Philip Lord and Christopher Miller, the directors who were ousted in summer 2017. The movie’s critical reception was lukewarm.

THR’s Matthew Belloni said during his conversation with Iger that “many believe Disney should pump the breaks and not put out a ‘Star Wars’ movie each year.”

In responding to Belloni, Iger referred to the upcoming “Star Wars” film series from the “Game of Thrones” cocreators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss and detailed the “mistake” he believes he made in the “Star Wars” release strategy, along with his subsequent approach to a “slowdown.”

“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,” Iger said. “You can expect some slowdown, but that doesn’t mean we’re not going to make films.”

He added that the director J.J. Abrams was busy making “Episode IX” and that “creative entities,” including Benioff and Weiss, were “developing sagas of their own, which we haven’t been specific about.”

“And we are just at the point where we’re going to start making decisions about what comes next after J.J.’s,” Iger added. “But I think we’re going to be a little bit more careful about volume and timing. And the buck stops here on that.”

Read the rest of the interview »