The Wide Angle: ‘Star Wars’ movie delayed … I’m scared

Published 7:01 am Sunday, June 5, 2016

As my good friend Scooby Doo once said: “Ruh, roh.”

Word came down the Internet wire just Tuesday that the first Star Wars stand-alone, “Rogue One,” has been sent back for massive reshoots. Scheduled to come out in December, it doesn’t take much to realize that this could be disastrous for a film many — including me — have really been looking forward to.

The movie takes place before “A New Hope,” and tells the story of the brave souls who stole the plans for the original Death Star.

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Frankly, I’ve loved imagining this story and when the first trailer came out in April I was excited. I mean, how important was this that Darth Vader in all his black-cloaked badness was sent to track down the plans themselves?

But now it appears the Disney executives were not happy with director Gareth Edwards’ first cut. Doing the quick math shows us that only seven months remain until it’s supposed to hit theaters.

In the movie world, that’s troubling. These shoots are rumored to be big and costly. You just don’t assemble sets or go on location and reshoot parts of a movie and Star Wars is not a franchise you really want to screw with.

Aside from the abominations that were the prequel movies, the world of “Star Wars” has always been brought lovingly to the screen.

Was there a problem with how the script was brought to the screen? Is Gareth Edwards a bad director or is there something else?

Addressing the first two possibilities, I can honestly say I don’t know. Edwards is capable of bringing an epic to the screen. He gave us 2014’s “Godzilla” and aside from some minor gripes about our favorite lizard’s weight (stop body-shaming people) and the fact that the movie itself was shot in a lot of dark scenes, it drew well and left people relatively happy.

This brings us to the “something else,” category and probably the thing that worries me the most and has worried me for quite some time.

Disney has it planned that starting with last year’s “The Force Awakens” a new “Star Wars” movie will be given to us every year possibly through 2020. That’s ambitious and requires everything to fold neatly into place.

This new wrinkle threatens that.

It makes me wonder if quality is being sacrificed for money. Now the normal person would say, “Well, duh.” Movie series like “Paranormal Activity,” “Saw,” and “The Purge,” exist solely for the dollar and I’ll argue that until my grave. Their plots are always singularly similar with very little depth. That lack or willingness to try something different is a clear indicator that they really don’t care because studios know people will sit their butts in their seats.

“Star Wars,” on the other hand should demand more. Now the Marvel movies seem to contradict that. It seems we’ve had one now every year since 1910 and yet they still continue to get good reviews, but how long will that continue.

My worry has always been that studios will try to churn too much out in too short of a period and once you gain a jaded fan-base you might as well hang it up.

Does this new bump in the galaxy road mean we should panic? Probably not, but we should be concerned and any studio paying a ton of money to bring to the screen what fans want to see.

I think it’s time studios start slowing down or fans will begin to take note.