Die-hard Star Wars fans might not be happy about the franchise's first-ever December release date, but J.J. Abrams definitely is.
Star Wars Episode VII's 2015 release year was announced well before Abrams came on board as director, and even before the film had picked up a writer (and, presumably, a script). It wasn't long before the production started to look like a rush job, and reports surfaced that the film would be moving from the traditional May Star Wars release to December. The news that writer Michael Arndt had left the project and Abrams and Empire Strikes Back stribe Lawrence Kasdan were taking over scripting duties only added fuel to that fire. Disney recently confirmed that report, and Abrams seems to be breathing a somewhat public sigh of relief.
"I will say that it is an infinitely better situation now than when they were saying they wanted it in the summer," Abrams told MTV. "Before I even came onto the project, before I was brought on, they were talking about 2015 and they made this announcement very early on. Which I understand, and I understand why they'd want that, but it didn't necessarily have anything to do with the reality of where anyone was creatively. So I think that it's a hugely important thing that that comes first, and that a release date is great, but you have to release something great. So to me, the new release date is a huge improvement."
That statement confirms the picture that was already forming of Abrams and Star Wars producer Kathleen Kennedy hoping to buy as much time as possible to make the film right while still getting it released in 2015. No real surprise there, but it's always interesting when a guy like Abrams, who's so famous for his secrecy, is willing to talk about the production schedule like this. As for other details about Star Wars Episode VII, Abrams is still playing things close to the vest, even when asked about the assumption that, because R2-D2 has already been confirmed as a character in the film, his counterpart C-3PO will also appear.
"They have different agents," Abrams said.
So, as always, you can only expect straight answers out of Abrams for so long before he falls back on his infamous mystery.