In just over a month, we're going to see the first new credits in a Star Wars film in over a decade. The opening crawl will have all new text and a new cast will be struggling to survive in this galaxy far, far away.
It's all terribly exciting, especially as director JJ Abrams grudgingly drops a few more hints and he confirms that the final special effects are currently being worked on. With the picture locked, we're also hearing concrete reports on the official running time of The Force Awakens. And it sounds like we're in for 135 minutes of blockbuster entertainment.
As many major franchise movies seem to be closer to two and a half hours in length, this makes The Force Awakens fairly brisk by comparison. Count in the trailers and getting settled in your seat and you're looking at maybe 155 minutes total to experience one of the most anticpated movies of all time. It also gives those who are planning on checking out a midnight showing an idea of when they might be tucked in up bed and dreaming of BB-8!
In terms of the whole Star Wars series, that running time places the film as the third longest to date, with the original trilogy generally being shorter than Lucas' misguided prequels.
- The Phantom Menace (1999) - 133 mins
- Attack of the Clones (2002) - 142 mins
- Revenge of the Sith (2005) - 140 mins
- A New Hope (1977) - 121 mins
- The Empire Strikes Back (1980) - 127 mins
- Return of the Jedi (1983) - 134 mins
Those prequels really did get quite bloated, most of the extra footage in Attack of the Clones is just old Ani mooning creepily over Padme. God it was awful. At least with those last few entries Abrams has a low bar to aim for when it comes to the new movie.
Star Wars Episode VII The Force Awakens is in cinemas from the 17th of December 2015.