‘Warcraft’ wants no part of ‘Star Wars Ep 7,’ moves to 2016

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After Disney and Lucasfilms decided to move Star Wars Episode VII to December 18, 2015 to give J.J. Abrams and company more time, Universal has wisely decided to change the release date of its film Warcraft, which was planned for release on the same day. Warcraft, based on the World of Warcraft franchise, will now release on March 11, 2016, according to Variety.

Despite the delay, the film seems to be moving ahead on schedule. The first concept art was released during November’s BlizzCon, and Travis Fimmel (Vikings, The Beast) was recently cast in an unspecified lead role. More casting news should be coming in the next month or two. The characters of Durotan and Lothar from the game will both appear, and Jones has said he would like to feature at least one strong female lead, if not more.

Directed by Duncan Jones, who also co-wrote the screenplay with Charles Leavitt, the film depicts the first meetings between humans and orcs and will feature locations from the game. Both the humans and the orcs will be depicted equally, with neither side being “good” or “bad.”

The delay shouldn’t affect the filming, which is set to begin in January of 2014.

Updated: With the sudden death of Paul Walker, Universal may once again alter its timetable to accommodate filming on future Fast and Furious films. Fast & Furious 7 is currently scheduled for release on July 11, 2014 (although that may change), and more films in the series have already been announced, including one tentatively set for 2016.  If that changes, other films may be reshuffled to fill the gap.