Saturday, May 3, 2014

Will Star Wars 7 Reach 3 Billion Dollars in Revenue?

Without a shred of doubt we can easily say that Star Wars Episode 7 is one of the most anticipated franchise reboots. Regardless of the movie being good or bad, we can be fairly sure that it will make a lot of money. But just how much money can Episode VII really earn? There have been a lot of speculations and analysis on this issue and the Guardian recently argued that SW7 might be the first movie to reach 3 billion dollars. Currently, the record is held by Cameroon's movie Avatar which received a worldwide gross of $2,782,275,172. In perspective, The Phantom Menace has earned a gross income of $1,027,044,677 making it the most commercially successful Star Wars movie (but it is still the worst in my book).

star wars episode 7 gross revenue

So, what's with these high expectations for the new movie? Why are so many people assuming that it will earn that much money? Well, there's probably a handful of reasons:
  1. The original cast will be playing their original roles, thus the original fanbase will have a lot of reasons to sink into the new SW trilogy.
  2. Star Wars is already the highest grossing franchise in the world.
  3. Disney will provide a whole new, younger fanbase. The animated Clone Wars series have already greatly contributed to this.
  4. The hype surrounding the movie is just too strong!
  5. Disney's marketing budgets will certainly come handy. If they made Frozen into a 6th most highest grossing movie of all time, then I am sure they can at least double that with an already amazing franchise.

The Return of the Original Crew

We already did a report on the new Star Wars 7 actors, so we won't be going too much into depth about them. Instead, let us focus on the return of the original cast and their roles. So, as you probably know, Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher all confirmed that they will indeed be playing their old roles in the new Star Wars 7 movie. However, the list doesn't end here since we will also have the pleasure to witness the return of the original Chewbacca, R2D2 and C3PO in the form of Peter Mayhew, Kenny Baker and Anthony Daniels. A year ago we also confirmed that John Williams will also be composing the musical score for the new film just as he has for all of the other ones.

The duo is back in action!

Regardless of your opinion of Abrams and his work, you have to agree that he really did do a good job by adding that impressive old-school feelgood factor.

However, is Star Wars large enough of a franchise to break all the record? Skyfall had some trouble passing the 1 billion mark, and yet agent 007 is a pretty big franchise is he not? Marvel's Avengers "only" broke around 1.5 billion and yet this was a collection of several very popular franchises in a single movie.

Due to these facts a lot of other analysts and experts are only predicting that Star Wars 7 will earn a bit more than 2 billion dollars haul. This would be enough for the movie to take third or even second place, but not nearly enough to defeat Avatar's $2.78bn record.

Can J.J. Abrams Make it Happen?

The first movie in George Lucas's saga hit in 1977. Back then only a few thousand people knew about Star Wars when it first arrived in the cinemas. Yet, the movie was able to spread like wildfire and soon there were lines everywhere because everyone wanted to see it. It was a very revolutionary thing at the time and a lot of people were very into Sci-Fi. The movie was so popular that it stayed for nine months in many cinemas across the board.

If Abrams hopes to hit $3bn then this is the challenge he is faced with. He needs to:
  1. Build up some hype among the fans with promotional videos (like they did with a special contest or the Ice Bucket Challenge)
  2. Create something truly unique and inspiring.
  3. Make all the critics shut up in awe so that more people go and see it.
  4. Earn a lot of money in the first few weeks, as this is when the majority of the money is made.
  5. The movie has to be so good that major filmgoers and fans will want to return two or three times to see the movie again with their friends who haven't seen it already. For example, this is how Titanic got a fair bit of revenue.

Star Wars 7 Will Need Balance

The last time I saw Harrison Ford's acting a major  was in his role of Indiana Jones in the movie The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. The movie was dreadful and his acting was horrible. In all honesty the movie was very dull, old-fashioned and the heavy CGI effects were just too much to handle. In fact out of all the three I probably hated the CGI effects the most. They were out of place and made the movie look horrible.

Update on 27th of August: Recently, the Star Wars 7 production team spoke about CGI and the way special effects are going to be handled. Abrams and Rian Johnson (who will be directing Episodes 8 and 9) both agree that they will move away from CGI. In fact they said that the new trilogy will try it's best to use more practical effects that will help the movie age better. Read the full report on what Rian Jolhnson said about practical effects.

Star Wars7 Harrison Ford acting
This popular Internet meme sums it up pretty well
What do you think about the new, upcoming Star Wars 7 movie? Do you have high hopes and expectations? Please feel free to write to us in the comments section bellow! :)

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