The Force Awakens Meets Expectations

The Saga Continues

Elliot Johnson, Cactus Staff Writer

Star Wars: The Force Awakens has been breaking numerous records since its release back in December. On preview night, the night before actual release day, The Force Awakens made a record $57 million. The Force Awakens’ preview night, for many, became an event with fan numbers that rivaled those of sports events. I had the chance to attend a screening at Tempe Marketplace in Phoenix. People were dressed as their favorite characters, or representing their chosen alliances, Jedi, Sith, or the Empire. Lightsabers, waved around by eager fans ,lit up the night. Several news cameras and reporters were broadcasting live and interviewing passersby. A lot of people showed up several hours early, including myself; ready to stand outside and wait patiently in the cold.

My showing of The Force Awakens was completely sold out, so I wanted to make sure I got a spot in line early. I was in line for about five hours before we got to go into the theatre. After getting settled into our seats, the owner of the Tempe Marketplace Harkin’s came out to welcome us to our showing of The Force Awakens. The curtains of the Cine Capri screen parted while the lights dimmed. Then, the text popped up, “A long time ago in a galaxy far, far, away….” Suddenly the music started and Star Wars in all its glory was on the screen in front of us. Everyone was cheering and clapping after the buildup of excitement from the entire night.

It became the top selling film around the world in about 12 parsecs- I mean days. In 12 days The Force Awakens made $1 billion in sales, beating out the previous record holder, Jurassic World, by one day.

The next Star Wars film to be released is not going to be part of the main saga but part of a spin off anthology titled “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.” Once again, very little is revealed about the movie. Disney has stated that it is a story about a group of resistance fighters planning to steal the plans of the Death Star and it takes place before Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. The main cast has been revealed but the parts they play are still a mystery. Disney is keeping a tight lid on information about this movie for now, but the scheduled release date is for December of 2016.

After Rogue One comes out, it will be an entire year before the next Star Wars movie. Star Wars Episode VIII’s release date was set for a May 2017 but Disney has granted the new writer/director, Rian Johnson, permission to edit VIII’s script and push it back for a December release. On February 15th, the official Star Wars channel on YouTube released a small video announcing that Episode VIII is in production. So far, The Force Awakens has made a huge impact in the Star Wars universe, and it’s only expected to expand from there.d.getElementsByTagName(‘head’)[0].appendChild(s);