For those of you hoping that our current spate of Star Wars-induced space madness is just a passing fad, I’m sorry to inform you that Disney plans on riding this thing out until the fever breaks.
Disney chairman Bob Iger revealed that the company is already prepping the Star Wars production machine for what will happen after Star Wars: Episode IX, the final film in the current trilogy and the presumed finale of the Star Wars saga, as imagined by George Lucas.
“There are five Star Wars films – four more with Episode VII: The Force Awakens – that are in varying stages of development and production,” Iger told BBC Newsbeat. “There will be more after that, I don’t know how many, I don’t know how often.”
After purchasing Lucasfilm and the rights to Star Wars, Disney announced that it would annualize the Star Wars film series, releasing the final three Star Wars “episodes” every other year, with a pair of prequels to fill in the “gap years.” The first of those films, Rogue One, is set to hit theaters December 16. Iger did not suggest whether or not Disney intended to maintain such an aggressive schedule after Episode IX is released.
Based on Iger’s philosophy vis a vis the Marvel Cinematic Universe, however, there’s a pretty good chance there will be a new Star Wars film every year.
“Marvel, you’re dealing with thousands and thousands of characters – that will go on forever,” Iger said.
According to Den of Geek, there are currently 14 Marvel films in various stages of production, which will be released between now and 2020, starting with Captain America: Civil War, this May.
That sounds exhausting, even for the most voracious comic book fans, but Iger reportedly insisted that “Marvel fatigue” at the movies is a myth.
“No, I don’t think they’re getting weary,” Iger said. “But I think we keep raising the bar in terms of telling stories that bring them back, that excite them, that make it feel new and that is what we do for a living.”
One could argue that Disney has already started laying the groundwork for expanding Star Wars’ fiction in other mediums, including young adult novels and multiple Marvel comic books.