Remember when the door of the Millennium Falcon fell and broke Harrison Ford’s leg, and I said that it was likely no big deal? Well, today it apparently became a big deal, because new rumors suggest that the injury may not only bench Ford for longer than the eight weeks we originally expected, but delay Star Wars: Episode VII‘s release date as well, pushing it into an already overcrowded 2016.
Before we get into the nitty-gritty details and possibilities of a delay, it’s worth noting that according to TheForce.net, a Lucasfilm spokesperson told them that “there is no change in the release date.” However, due to the lack of an official statement from Disney or Lucasfilm themselves, we still can’t be sure if that’s true.
With that said, let’s take a look at the new details that surfaced today. The folks over at Jedi News reported that “a number of sources” had told them production on Episode VII could be delayed because of the “severe nature” of Ford’s injury, and that a meeting had been called this morning at Pinewood Studios to discuss the situation and how it will effect the shooting schedule.
The early word from that meeting is that “production of the film could be pushed back by a substantial amount of time,” and that Ford will actually be sidelined for six months, not two. If true, that’s a pretty big deal, because early reports suggested that Han Solo plays a significant part in this film, meaning that Ford being absent could drastically change the production schedule, and therefore delay the release date.
There’s always the chance that J.J. Abrams could re-work the script a bit to accommodate the injury or shift the focus of the story away from Han Solo, but at this stage in the game, it may not be possible to completely change things that are either important to the story, or wouldn’t lead to a bigger delay anyway.