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Disney announced Tuesday that it is acquiring Lucasfilm LTD, including the Star Wars franchise, for $4.05 billion in stock and cash.
In a press release announcing the acquisition, Disney announced that Star Wars Episode 7 is targeted for a release date in 2015 and that "more feature films expected to continue the Star Wars saga and grow the franchise well into the future."
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On a conference call, Disney CEO Bob Iger said that in addition to Episode 7, episodes 8 and 9 are also in the works. The goal, Iger said, was to "release a new Star Wars feature film every two to three years."
This is Disney's third major brand and studio acquisition in the last ten years. In 2006, the company acquired Pixar for $7.4 billion. In 2009, Disney acquired Marvel for $4 billion.
Lucasfilm co-chairman Kathleen Kennedy will become president of Lucasfilm under Disney and serve as Star Wars brand manager. George Lucas will serve as a creative consultant.
The other subsdiaries of Lucasfilm, LucasArts, Industrial Light & Magic and SKywalker Sound are also moving to Disney. The plan is to keep all Lucasfilm employees at its current San Francisco headquarters.
What do you think of this merger between two of the biggest entertainment brands in the world? Let us know in the comments.
1. Luke and Leia
This story originally published on Mashable here.