Star Wars is an American epic space opera franchise centered on a film series created by George Lucas. This film series has spawned an extensive media franchise called the Expanded Universe that includes books, television series, computer and video games, and comic books. These supplements to the two film trilogies have resulted in significant development of the series’ fictional universe.
These media kept the franchise active in the interim between the film trilogies. 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, who are their evil counterpart. Their weapon of choice, the light saber, is commonly recognized in popular culture. The fictional universe also contains many themes, especially influences of philosophy and religion.
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 worldwide 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.