Variety reports that Disney Theme Parks are planning a "far greater Star Wars presence" according to Bob Iger during a conference call with analysts reporting record third quarter results.“When we grow ‘Star Wars” presence, which we will do significantly, you will see better bets being made that will pay off for us than were made in the past,” adding that leveraging the collection of popular franchises and properties that the company owns for rides and experiences will deliver “better returns than we saw in the past.”
The Lucasfilm Pavilion was a plethora of activity as usual at Comic-Con, and while Disney-Lucas is reportedly planning on "thinning the herd" for their licensors, that doesn't appear to be the case yet. The focal point was on Disney XD's soon to be televised Star Wars Rebels series. Traditional exhibitors such as Her Universe, eFX, and Hallmark showed their latest and greatest. The Yoda puppet replica from eFX looks amazingly accurate and Hallmark, as usual, sells out of their convention exclusives, but gave a sneak peek of this year's Keepsake collectibles. New licensors such as Peavey with their awesome new Star Wars guitars, Vans, and Jakks with their jumbo plastic figures also were present.
For those who follow such things, the great Leland Chee has given us insight regarding Lucasfilm's Expanded Universe archive's levels of official-ness over the years. But now The Hollywood Reporter is telling us that Disney is going to change it up a bit, making one official level of canon and another that, for all intents and purposes, you can ignore. Or enjoy. It's up to you. Click here to read it. It doesn't tell us everything.
In a move surprising no one, StarWars.com confirms Marvel will publish Star Wars comics once more in 2015. As many have speculated, this would keep the comic license within the Disney family four double-plus synergy. Click here to read the rest.
In a move surprising no one, Disney now has sequel rights for upcoming Indiana Jones films so says Variety. From TFA:
"The Walt Disney Studios and Paramount Pictures have reached a distribution and marketing agreement for the Indiana Jones franchise.
Under the arrangement, Disney gains distribution and marketing rights to future films, in addition to retaining the ownership rights it secured when it acquired Lucasfilm."
That's the rumor! Comingsoon.com, Slashfilm, Theme Park Insider, and IGN (among others) all have reports of this tantalizing, thrilling, and completely expected development. UPDATE - a reader and former Disney employee added his two cents.
The Hollywood Reporter posted an article called Power Lawyers: How 'Star Wars' Nerds Sold Lucasfilm to Disney which details all sorts of fun little tidbits, like how they went and confirmed Lucasfilm really did own all the copyrights and trademarks and what have you for hundreds of characters which are now in the hands of the House of Mouse.
After the "freeze yourself in Carbonite" collectible, now the Disney Parks Blog reports you can also be a Stormtrooper! It's coming May 17 to Disney's Hollywood Studios as part of Star Wars Weekends. It's $99.95 and takes a few weeks to deliver, but that's a lot faster than never getting to be a Stormtrooper that sits around on your desk. And would you believe a similar, cheaper product exists for Star Trek too now?
David Yeh of Endor Express has a great report on the new Droid Factory shop that opened up at Disneyland Anaheim Star Traders recently, to the joy of West Coast fans.
Thanks to a tip from our pal and friend to all collectors Chuck, we now know that Downtown Disney's Once Upon a Toy Hasbro store now has the Droid Factory set up. This means you don't have to pay to get into Disney Hollywood Studios, as Once Upon a Toy has no admission fee. From the pictures it looks like it's a much better set-up filled with bins on four sides (rather than just one) and best of all, you won't have to shell out $100 to get into the theme park to waste 2 hours of high-quality ride time to attempt to collect them all.
LucasArts was best known to fans as what confused people thought was the true name of the company Lucasfilm, but in reality it was the entertainment software branch of George Lucas' media empire. For much of its early life it was known as Lucasfilm Games, which spawned numerous memorable computer games like The Curse of Monkey Island, TIE Fighter, Maniac Mansion, and more recently Grim Fandango. Today, we learned that Disney will be shuttering the developer, instead licensing out its characters to other developers. The fate for Star Wars 1313 is not completely known although some reports have indicated it was far enough along to finish while others say it will be axed.
With recent news and all, this year's Star Wars Weekends at Disney Hollywood Studios in Orlando, Florida (May 17 to June 9) is a little more special and relevant and may offer hints of the franchise's future, which we hope expands beyond the cutesy collectible and pins with the obligatory mouse ears.
Hasbro announces two new Star Tours exclusive multi-packs that will be available beginning in May 2013 at Walt Disney Hollywood Studios in Orlando (to debut for Star Wars Weekends) and at Disneyland Resort in Anaheim soon thereafter.