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A New ‘Star Wars’ Trilogy Is on the Way From Disney

Call it a New Hope.

Walt Disney Co. is making another trilogy of “Star Wars” movies, its second since it bought Lucasfilm and the fourth since the space drama debuted in 1977.

The plans, revealed on an earnings conference call Thursday, are welcome news not only to fans but to Disney investors, who have enjoyed the profits from Disney’s movie division, and to theater chains, which could use a few more guaranteed hits on their screens.

Since Disney acquired Lucasfilm for $4 billion in 2012, it has rolled out two films, with a third, “The Last Jedi,” coming in December. Two more are scheduled for 2018 and 2019. The new trilogy, to be developed by “Last Jedi” director Rian Johnson, would come after 2020.

The first film in the current trilogy, “The Force Awakens,” generated more than $2 billion in worldwide box office revenue. This year, “The Last Jedi” is expected to propel Disney to the top of the U.S. box office for a second straight year.