LucasFilm Suspends More “Star Wars” Spin-off Films

In response to poor box office receipts for “#Solo: A #StarWars Movie”, #LucasFilm is suspending work on future “Star Wars” spin-off movies to focus instead on the core franchise movies like the upcoming #StarWarsIX.

This effectively means that there won’t be Obi-wan or Boba Fett spin-offs.

After 26 days since opening, “Solo: A Star Wars Movie” has only made $343-million worldwide, which is $196-million domestic + $147-million internationally. This is a far cry from the near $482-million that the previous spin-off, “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”, made domestically in its first 26 days. And that $482-million domestic is $150-million more than what Solo made both domestically & internationally combined.


A Disappointing Opening Weekend for “Solo: A Star Wars Movie”

In spite of being No. 1 at the box office on its opening weekend (which is also Memorial Day weekend), “#Solo: A #StarWar Story” fell far short of monetary expectations by earning a meager $148.3-million globally ($83.3-million domestically & $65-million internationally). This is unfortunate given that it’s a fun movie that most fans of the franchise would enjoy seeing.

Some factors that may have worked against the film’s opening are as follows:

  • There are 2 other recent blockbuster releases still playing in theaters: “#Avengers: #InfinityWar” & “#Deadpool 2”.
  • #FranchiseFatigue: it’s only been 5 months since the release of “#StarWars VIII: #TheLastJedi”.
  • Less than stellar reviews.
  • Changing directors midway to Ron Howard.
  • Mixed reactions to the most recent Star Wars movie: The Last Jedi.

Only time will tell if “Solo: A Star Wars Movie” can turn the tide and attract more fans to see the film. Overseas, the film has not yet opened in Japan until June 29, 2018.



“Black Panther”: 5th Highest Grossing Movie of All Time (Domestic)

As the 5th highest grossing movie of all time domestically, #BlackPanther isn’t just the highest grossing superhero movie of all time now (having out-performed #TheAvengers from 2012), it has also out-performed “#StarWars VIII: #TheLastJedi”!

The top 7 grossing domestic films of all time as of March 28, 2018 are as follows:

  1. “Star Wars VII: The Last Jedi” (2015): $936,662,225
  2. “Avatar” (2009): $760,507,625
  3. “Titanic” (1997): $659,363,944
  4. “Jurassic World” (2015): $652,270,625
  5. “Black Panther” (2018): $635,634,080
  6. “Marvel’s The Avengers” (2012): $623,357,910
  7. “Star Wars VIII: The Last Jedi” (2017): $619,999,185



Rian Johnson Scrapped J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars VIII Script

#StarWars actress Daisy Ridley (who plays Rey) has revealed that #StarWarsVIII (#TheLastJedi) director Rian Johnson scrapped a script that J.J. Abrams drafted after he directed #StarWarsVII: #TheForceAwakens.

In an interview for French magazine Le Magazine GEEK, Daisy Ridley revealed that J.J. Abrams drafted scripts for both Episode VIII and IX before Rian Johnson and Colin Trevorrow jumped in to direct the sequels.

“Here’s what I think I know. J. J. wrote Episode VII, as well as drafts for VIII & IX,” Ridley said. “Then Rian Johnson arrived and wrote TLJ entirely. I believe there was some sort of general consensus on the main lines of the trilogy, but apart from that, every director writes and realizes his film in his own way.”

“Rian Johnson and J. J. Abrams met to discuss all of this, although Episode VIII is still his very own work,” Ridley explained regarding Abrams’ involvement with The Last Jedi. “I believe Rian didn’t keep anything from the first draft of Episode VIII.”

As of 2017, J.J. Abrams replaced Colin Trevorrow as director of Episode IX, but we’ll never know what J.J. Abrams version of The Last Jedi would’ve been like.


The Oscars: “The Shape of Water” Wins Best Picture!

Congratulations to director Guillermo del Toro (who won the #Oscar for #BestDirector) and the cast & crew of #TheShapeOfWater for winning #BestPicture at the 2018 #AcademyAwards! It’s been 14 years since another #SciFi or #fantasy film has won Best Picture, and that was Peter Jackson’s 2003 film “#LordOfTheRings: #TheReturnOfTheKing” in 2004.

Science fiction & fantasy movies are rarely nominated for “Best Picture” even though many of them out-perform the actual nominees at the box office. Other sci-fi & fantasy movies that have been nominated for “Best Picture”, but didn’t win include the following:

  • “Arrival” (2016)
  • “The Martian” (2015)
  • “Mad Max: Fury Road” (2015)
  • “Her” (2013)
  • “Gravity” (2013)
  • “Life of Pi” (2012)
  • “Hugo” (2011)
  • “Inception” (2010)
  • “Avatar” (2009)
  • “District 9” (2009)
  • “The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers” (2002)
  • “The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring” (2001)
  • “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” (2000)
  • “The Green Mile” (1999)
  • “Beauty and the Beast” (1991)
  • “Ghost” (1990)
  • “E.T. The Extra Terrestrial” (1982)
  • “Heaven Can Wait” (1978)
  • “Star Wars IV: A New Hope” (1977)
  • “A Clockwork Orange” (1971)
  • “Dr. Strangelove: or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb” (1964)
  • “It’s a Wonderful Life” (1946)
  • “Heaven Can Wait” (1943)
  • “The Wizard of Oz” (1939)
  • “Lost Horizon” (1937)

Sci-fi & Fantasy movies that were never nominated for “Best Picture”, but (arguably) should have been, include the following:

  • “The Dark Knight” (2008)
  • “Pan’s Labyrinth” (2006)
  • “Aliens” (1986)
  • “Star Wars VI: Return of the Jedi” (1983)
  • “Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back” (1980)
  • “Alien” (1979)
  • “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” (1977)
  • “2001: A Space Odyssey” (1968)



“Black Panther” Becomes Highest Grossing Film for February Ever

Move over #Deadpool: #BlackPanther has now taken the slot for highest grossing film for February ever earning an estimated 3-day weekend of $192-million domestic and heading towards a 4-day estimated $218-million.

It’s also the fifth highest grossing film for a 3-day opening ever after “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”, “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”, “Jurassic World” and “Marvel’s The Avengers”.