I read this in YodaNews' Q&A:
Yodasnews: Do you think it would be possible for you to bring out a huge half of a death star play set unlike the original vintage one? Sure we know play sets don't sell as well but if you produced it in a small quantity and made it exclusive to online retailers like the imperial shuttle I am sure the collectors would pay big money for this item. Heck even I would pay a couple of hundred dollars for a death star play set that actually seemed to be more accurate in size.
Hasbro: Good question and one which we are always looking at. You answered the question yourself, though, by saying that we'd produce small quantities and have to charge a lot for it. That by definition is a very risky niche product with a massive R&D burden and tooling budget. Quite simply we have to find mass-market solutions to massively intensive R&D challenges like play sets. By the way, we've got mocked up in the office three versions of the very play set you describe.
I'd love to see what they have as mock-ups, wouldn't you? Just a featurette on the Hasbro offices like Hyperspace's tour of Rancho Obi-Wan (Sansweet's place) would be awesome. They can state in picture captions over-and-over again that Hasbro has no plans to produce the Death Star at this time - but it is sweet that they are looking into various directions to test its feasability.
I wonder if in the end, Hasbro will opt to create its own high-end division, and make $2-500 "toys" like the Death Star, a Star Destroyer, etc (or charge even more for them) in light of the collector market and Gentle Giant, SideShow, and Master Replicas being very successful in that niche. I'm willing to bet that 90% or more of SS, GG, and MR's customers have a Hasbro action figure collection for Star Wars too. If they're willing to spend so much on FX Lightsabers and a nearly $400 Jabba diorama for 12" figures - they'll buy a (GOOD QUALITY) playset from Hasbro for its action figures at those high prices and Hasbro can do a limited amount, take the necessary steps to do a pre-sell, etc. All they are doing by not offering it, is short-changing themselves on the fun they'd have in selling it, let alone mentioning the revenue. Yeah, so they're an Ages 4 & Up toy company? Any company can expand their markets. Don't beer and cigarette companies offer clothing? Albeit it's advertising, but if Hasbro made a darn Death Star, wouldn't that be advertising an invitation for all of us to buy tons of Imperials to fill it with?
Change with the market and adapt. ROTS might have been ages 4 & Up, but in 2017 with a year left to go with the current license, the reality Hasbro will face is that Star Wars fans will be ages 35 & Up or something like that. - Perhaps the children of Hasbro's "current children" will want their first Luke Tatooine then, but Daddy will surely want to buy the Death Star and keep Junior's paws off of it! Hehe.