The new 'Star Wars' films will not stop at being a trilogy, and could go on to become something much like Marvel's extended universe, according to Lost creator and 'Star Trek' producer Damon Lindelof.
Lindelof is probably in a better position than anyone outside of Disney and Lucasfilm to guess what the announcement of the new film series means, having produced 2009's 'Star Trek' reboot and co-written Ridley Scott's 'Alien' prequel 'Prometheus'.
In what is according to Rolling Stone, "a lightly edited" account of the producer's words, he claims that his understanding is that unlike the previous batches of stories from a galaxy far, far away, the new films could just keep on coming.
Lindelof told the magazine: "My understanding is that there's going to be a movie every two or three years, and they're not even calling it a new trilogy. I think one should look at it in more the same realm of the way that Star Trek worked. They made 12 of those things. It's going to be ongoing, and the story can sort of jump around as much as it likes, in the same way the Marvel universe can now."
This sort of move would make sense - there's already a huge expanded universe of novels on which to draw on for the new films, and Lucas himself has in the past attempted to add to the franchise outside the two trilogies with the animated 'Clone Wars', a TV series and a film based around the Ewok characters.
The comparison with 'Star Trek' is an interesting one - as the characters from the original films and TV series passed the baton on to a new generation of characters in 1994's 'the New Generation'. Rumours have surrounded a return for original actors Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher, with Ford's character Han Solo apparently due to be killed off.
Disney also owns Marvel Studios, and has proved adept at turning their stable of characters into a seemingly endless series of money-spinning franchises, led by the record-breaking 'Avengers'.
Lindelof thinks that the reboot, apparently set for 2015, could be set to be the biggest film event ever, dwarfing even the huge anticipation that greeted 1999's 'Episode I: The Phantom Menace'.
The producer added: "But it is going to be – I can say this with 100 percent confidence three years out – the biggest event movie in the history of modern cinema. The level of excitement and anticipation about Episode VII is going to be double what it was for Episode I."
PHOTOS: The original 'Star Wars' trilogy