Star Wars is a space opera franchise centered on a motion picture series created by George Lucas. The film series has spawned a media franchise called the Expanded Universe and includes books, television, games, and comic books.
The franchise depicts a galaxy described as far, far away in the distant past, and it commonly portrays Jedi as a representation of good, in conflict with the Sith, their evil counterpart. Their weapon of choice, the lightsaber, is commonly recognized in popular culture.
The first film in the series was originally released on May 25, 1977, under the title Star Wars, by 20th Century Fox, and became a pop culture phenomenon, followed by two sequels, released at three-year intervals. Sixteen years after the release of the trilogy's final film, the first in a new prequel trilogy of films was released. The three prequel films were also released at three-year intervals, with the final film of the trilogy released on May 19, 2005.
In October 2012, The Walt Disney Company acquired Lucasfilm for $4.05 billion, and announced that it would produce three new films, with the first film, Star Wars Episode VII, planned for release in 2015. 20th Century Fox still retains the distribution rights to the first two Star Wars trilogies, owning permanent rights for the original film, now retronymed Episode IV: A New Hope, while holding the rights to Episodes I–III, V and VI until May 2020.
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