Volkswagen Is Killing Off the Beetle—Again

iStock
iStock

Say your last goodbye to Slug Bug. Volkswagen will no longer be making its famous Beetle cars, according to the BBC. Production will cease in July 2019.

The German car design has been around since the 1930s—when Hitler had a hand in its creation—and the basic look hasn’t changed all that much since then. In 1997, Volkswagen debuted the New Beetle, a sleeker, more modern update on the original insect-like design. The last of the classic Bugs were produced in 2003. In 2011, the company replaced the New Beetle with another design that tweaked the Bug’s look just a little more. Now, it seems even the updated Beetle is going away.

Over its decades-long run, the Beetle became one of the most recognizable cars on the road, thanks in part to Disney, hippies, and of course, Ted Bundy.

The death of the Beetle has been rumored for a while. A Volkswagen executive alluded to the car’s demise at the Geneva motor show in March 2018, but a company spokesperson later walked that statement back, saying there were no plans to kill off the car. Recently, there were also rumors that an electric Beetle could be coming, but that idea seems to be off the table for now. VW only sold 15,166 Beetles in the U.S. in 2017, The Washington Post reports.

Could the Beetle one day be revived? Maybe. In a press statement, the CEO of Volkswagen’s U.S. arm, Hinrich Woebcken, said he would “never say never” of the potential for a revival of the car down the road. So the company seems to be leaving the door open.

If you’re not ready to say goodbye to the VW Bug just yet, you’ve still got a few months to run out and buy the 2019 Beetle Final Edition, the last model that will be produced by the company. And yes, it comes in a convertible.

[h/t BBC]

Disney CEO Says Star Wars Fans Should 'Expect Some Slowdown'

Jonathan Olley, Lucasfilm Ltd.
Jonathan Olley, Lucasfilm Ltd.

by Dana Samuel

When Disney bought Lucasfilm six years ago, it's almost as though the Star Wars franchise shifted into overdrive with production, releasing four films in just three years.

Starting with the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens in 2015, next came Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016), Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017), and most recently, Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018). Although Star Wars fans are happy about not having to wait years in between installments, Disney CEO Bob Iger says fans should "expect some slowdown" after Episode IX's 2019 release.

While speaking to The Hollywood Reporter about the speed of Star Wars project production, Iger shared:

"I made the timing decision, and as I look back, I think the mistake that I made ... was a little too much, too fast … You can expect some slowdown, but that doesn't mean we're not going to make films. J.J. is busy making IX. We have creative entities, including David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, who are developing sagas of their own, which we haven't been specific about.”

"We are just at the point where we're going to start making decisions about what comes next," Iger continued. "But I think we're going to be a little bit more careful about volume and timing. And the buck stops here on that."

Slowdown? Just when we were getting used to this steady flow of Star Wars spectacles?

Hopefully this means that each new project will just get extra attention when it comes to production value, storyline, etc. If not, we have no doubt that fans will have a few choice words for Iger.

How Much Is Game of Thrones Author George RR Martin Worth?

Kevin Winter, Getty Images
Kevin Winter, Getty Images

by Dana Samuel

Unsurprisingly, Game of Thrones took home another Emmy Award earlier this week for Outstanding Drama Series, which marked the series' third time winning the title. Of course, George RR Martin—the author who wrote the books that inspired the TV show, and the series' executive producer—celebrated the victory alongside ​the GoT cast.

For anyone who may be unfamiliar with Martin's work, he is the author of the A Song of Ice and Fire series, which is the epic fantasy series that led to the Game of Thrones adaptation. Basically, we really we have him to thank for this seven-year roller coaster we've been on.

At 70 years old (his birthday was yesterday, September 20th), Martin has had a fairly lengthy career as an author, consisting of a number of screenplays and TV pilots before A Song of Ice and Fire, which, ​according to Daily Mail he wrote in the spirit of The Lord of the Rings.

 Cast and crew of Outstanding Drama Series winner 'Game of Thrones' pose in the press room during the 70th Emmy Awards at Microsoft Theater on September 17, 2018 in Los Angeles, California
Frazer Harrison, Getty Images

Martin sold the rights to his A Song of Ice and Fire series in 2007, and he truly owes the vast majority of his net worth to the success of his novels and the Game of Thrones TV series. So how much exactly is this acclaimed author worth? According to Daily Mail, Martin makes about $15 million annually from the TV show, and another $10 million from his successful literary works.

According to Celebrity Net Worth, that makes Martin's net worth about $65 million.

Regardless of his millions, Martin still lives a fairly modest life, and it's clear he does everything for his love of writing.

We'd like to extend a personal thank you to Martin for creating one of the most exciting and emotionally jarring storylines we've ever experienced.
We wish Game of Thrones could go ​on for 13 seasons, too!

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