‘Star Wars: Episode VIII’ release delayed to Dec. 2017

Star Wars: The Force Awakens
This photo provided by Disney/Lucasfilm shows Daisy Ridley, right, as Rey, and John Boyega as Finn, in a scene from the film, "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," directed by J.J. Abrams. After missing out on a best picture nomination, "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" will get to compete for best picture at the Critics Choice Awards with "Mad Max: Fury Road," which has a leading 13 nominations. The awards will be presented on Sunday, Jan. 17, 2016, in Los Angeles. (David James/Disney/Lucasfilm via AP)

NEW YORK (AP) — The release of “Star Wars: Episode VIII” has been delayed from May 2017 to December 2017.

The Walt Disney Co. announced the new release date, Dec. 15, on Wednesday. The date change pushes back the anticipated “Star Wars” installment set to follow the box-office hit “The Force Awakens.”

The eighth chapter in the saga is to be written and directed by Rian Johnson. Production is scheduled to begin next month in London.

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