The Star Wars movie franchise fans are in for a treat following the revelation that three new movies are set for release in the coming years.
The announcement by Lucasfilm was made at Star Wars Celebration 2023 with confirmation that the three movies will be directed by Dave Filoni, James Mangold, and Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy. Although details were thin on the ground, Mangold’s movie will be set at the dawn of the Jedi, while Filioni concentrates on the New Republic. The Obaid-Chinoy movie will be “set after the events of Rise of Skywalker” and will feature the return of Daisy Ridley in her role as the popular character Rey.
Potential Release Dates
Tentative release dates for the new movies include December dates in 2025 and 2027. Four of the last five Star Wars films have been released during the holiday season. Kathleen Kennedy, president of Lucasfilm, had great news for Star Wars fans that the development of all three movies is “pretty far along.”
There have been 12 Star Wars movies, so why not take this PIA Star War quiz to test your knowledge of the franchise and discover some obscure Star Wars facts? Did you know that critics panned the first Star Wars movie or that Jodie Foster was originally offered the role of Princess Leia?
Combining Star Wars Originals with the Next Generation
The prospective movies signal a welcome return of the franchise. The 2019 movie Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker saw Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Billy Dee Williams reprise their roles as Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, and Lando Calrissian, respectively. The movie made over $1 billion at the worldwide box office and represented a return to form after the preceding movie, Solo: A Star Wars Story, bombed, making just $393.2 million globally.
One reason behind the success of The Rise of Skywalker was the return of the cast from the 2017 movie Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Episode VIII), which featured popular actors from the original Star Wars trilogy alongside the new generation, including Daisy Ridley as Rey, John Boyega as Finn, and Adam Driver as Ben Solo/Kylo Ren.
This approach could be replicated for the new Star Wars movies, which aim to satisfy three distinct sets of Star War aficionados: purists who view the original trilogy as the best Star Wars has to offer, fans raised on the prequel trilogy and the next generation who favor the five movies released between 2015 and 2019. Kennedy of Lucasfilm has indicated that Mangold’s movies will represent the franchise’s past. At the same time, Filoni will capture the present, with the future of Star Wars portrayed by the movie featuring Rey.
Preparing to Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Franchise
Following speculation that Jedi Order by Rey Skywalker could be released in 2027, hopes have been raised of a 50-year celebration of Lucasfilm Star Wars movies. The first movie in the franchise, Star Wars Ep. IV: A New Hope was released in 1977, so marking the anniversary would allow the franchise to come full circle.
Successful Star Wars Spinoffs
Of course, the Star Wars universe does not end with the movies. With various characters to choose from, the potential for future TV spinoffs is guaranteed. New Star Wars iterations slated for release include Ahsoka, which features Rosario Dawson as Ahsoka Tano and will be released in August 2023, The Acolyte, and Lando.
Spinoffs such as The Mandalorian, The Book of Boba Fett, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Andor have proven to be highly popular with fans. The Mandalorian, in particular, has emerged as the hit spinoff of the franchise with the TV series, created by Jon Favreau, praised for examining the human side of the eponymous protagonist, played by Pedro Pascal.
While the Baby Yoda, or Grogu, has become a merchandising hit and launched a thousand memes. TV spinoffs create the opportunity to develop the backstory of often peripheral figures and the scope to create new characters in the Star Wars universe.
With so many new Star Wars movies and limited TV series on the horizon, fans will have their work cut out keeping up with the latest storylines and characters appearing in the vast Star Wars universe. While there are inherent risks involved in the decision to use multiple directors, the move ensures that the franchise can stay fresh by developing diverse backstories and plot lines.