A release date for the new Star Wars movie – Episode VII – is getting closer. Multiple sources are reporting that a mid-December release is likely, meaning director J.J. Abrams has plenty of time to get it right.

J.J AbramsJ.J. Abrams has to make Star Wars Episode VII amazing, or else

The Christmas date marks an unprecedented move for the franchise; all of the previous six movies were filmed in the U.K and granted a May release. But given the crowded nature of business – most of the blockbusters hits screens in the summer months – a winter bow could be a blessing.

This rumour was first reported by Badass digest, who claim multiple sources “have December circled on their calendars, with a mid-month release - the 15th - being most likely.” Fans had hoped that Disney would give something away at the D23 convention, but they remained tight-lipped about their reboot of the legendary sci-fi franchise.

For one of Star Wars’ legends, Dave Prowse - who portrayed the Sith Lord Darth Vader in Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980) and Return of the Jedi (1983) – change could be a good thing. He isn’t a fan of the last three films – the prequels – but would be willing to make a return.

David ProwseIt's Darth Vader! - David Prowse

"I didn't like Star Wars I, II and III at all. I think the common opinion now is they were really bad movies." He told The Hull Daily Mail: "There's no comparison with the original movies. They had a much more believable story. "Unfortunately, Darth Vader was killed off," he said. "But it would be nice to come back and do another character, because no one's ever seen my face. I was never unmasked."