As Britain braces itself ahead of the highly-anticipated UK premiere of the latest episode in the Star Wars’ adventures, cinematic history is being made behind the scenes as well as on the silver screen. With digital pirates likely to attempt to ambush the project ahead of this week’s launch, Walt Disney Studios are investing heavily in an extensive anti-piracy campaign.

Could become the biggest grossing Film

Expectations are high that sales for the blockbuster may challenge those for the record-breaking “Avatar, with “Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens set to become the biggest grossing film in history.

The early evidence looks extremely promising with Cinema reports of record-breaking advance sales of tickets in the build up to the big day.

In order to achieve that target, the take at the box office would need to surpass $2.76bn (approximately £1.81bn). Big bucks are involved and the film makers’ interests need to be protected as a result.

Piracy risk

The pirates would no doubt sense a challenge to their credentials from such lofty aims, with the potential for profiteering on their side. Imagine the kudos gleaned from becoming the first person to upload the new film in its entirety.

With the potential for people to attempt to record using hand-held devices, additional personnel have been drafted in to bolster security.

Hi-tech night-vision goggles will enable staff to be on the lookout for “unusual behaviour”.

Space age security

The science on screen has had to be matched by that utilised in the distribution of the film around the country. The distribution of copies of the film started early this week, with strict security protocol again being adopted.

Digitally encrypted files have been used and each auditorium has a unique electronic key to unlock only its own copy of the film.

With Europe still on a high security alert in the wake of the Paris attacks, fans seeking to wear Star Wars’ related costumes to screenings are likely to be asked to lower their masks and remove them completely.

Security concerns have prompted the avoidance of all thoughts of seeking pre-Oscars film awards. That would have required “screener” DVDs to be sent out to the various voting members involved. That would have been far too risky with a project of this magnitude it seems.

Not long to wait

There’s not long left to wait though for ardent fans: UK cinemas will finally get their first view of the new film in London on Wednesday.

It promises to be a nostalgic event for the fans, with original Star Wars’ cast members Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia) and Harrison Ford (Han Solo) reprising their roles.