If rumors swirling through the massive "Star Wars" fan base are true, we may not have to call the upcoming seventh major film in the series "Episode VII" for much longer.
According to Ain't It Cool News, the official title for Episode VII is likely to be "The Ancient Fear." In the story, the site's founder, Harry Knowles, wrote that sources close to Lucasfilm confirmed the title Tuesday, although neither Lucasfilm nor director J.J. Abrams were willing to give up the name.
"My original source had told me back in January that Abu Dhabi was a [filming] location, and when that came to be, he sent me a scoop that the title for 'Star Wars Episode VII' was 'The Ancient Fear," Knowles wrote. "I ran it by everyone in the editorial chatroom....and they rattled their sources cages -- and couldn't get confirmation... BUT tonight... a source that I'm told to call Col. Mustard claimed completely on his own that 'the working title' was 'The Ancient Fear.'"
Knowles added that the potential title is a reference to the villainous character expected to be played by Max Von Sydow, one of the cast members Lucasfilm and Disney announced last week.
It's curious that Knowles referred to "The Ancient Fear" as a "working title." But writing for Mashable, Chris Taylor argued that if the title is accurate at all, it is likely to be the official name of the film when it hits theaters in December 2015.
"It's entirely possible that this is a working title, of course," Taylor wrote. "You can't throw a stone in a crowd of Star Wars nerds without hitting someone who will tell you that the working title for 'Return of the Jedi' was 'Blue Harvest: Horror Beyond Imagination.' But that's not quite accurate, as it turns out. 'Blue Harvest' was used as a cover for a Star Wars movie, rather than a working title. Producer Howard Kazanjian says he came up with it as a canny way to get regular rates from film set vendors, who by that point would have jacked up their rates for anything with 'Star Wars' in the name.
Added Taylor, "If 'The Ancient Fear' is the working title for Episode VII, we would lay money that's the name you'll see on posters outside cineplexes on opening day."
Neither Lucasfilm nor Disney immediately responded to requests for comment.