To the surprise of no one (ourselves included), Lucasfilm has pushed back the release date of the somewhat troubled Star Wars: Episode IX to December of 2019. The news comes just after the studio announced that J.J. Abrams will direct and co-write the final installment of the sequel trilogy, replacing a departing Colin Trevorrow.
While the first six episodes of the Star Wars saga were released in May, The Force Awakens broke the tradition with a near-Christmas release. The Last Jedi was originally set for a May 2017 date, but the Rian Johnson-directed film was pushed to December 2017 to give the writer-director more time to improve the script. With all three sequels and Rogue One coming out during the holiday season, it looks like the Star Wars series is now a December series.
This may be of some relief to Disney, as the original May 25 release date for Episode IX would have stepped on the toes of Disney’s own Marvel blockbuster, the untitled follow-up to Avengers: Infinity War (releasing May 3, 2019). However, Warner Bros. and DC may want to watch out, as the Patty Jenkins-directed sequel to Wonder Woman will release on Dec. 13, 2019. This is exactly a week before Episode IX’s new date, Dec. 20, 2019.