In the brief period since Disney acquired the Star Wars franchise for a cool $4 billion, Star Wars fans have certainly been treated to an ongoing expansion of their beloved sci-fi epic. Whatever apprehensions there may have been once the news broke that Star Wars was switching hands has been eased by the arrival of two films that have reignited the franchise in the eyes of many.
Following the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, more films are on the way – including a highly-anticipated Han Solo anthology film and a variety of rumors regarding a potential Obi-Wan spin-off. Yet in all this and with the rise in popularity of television over the years, fans still haven’t had any confirmation about the possibility of a Star Wars TV series. There has been talk, of course, but to date nothing concrete has been established.
The topic of the possibility of a Star Wars TV series has once again found itself in the news – although the results may not be quite what fans were hoping for. During an EW interview with ABC president Channing Dungey, the network’s newest boss was asked about whether or not a Star Wars series was currently in development. The short answer is that no, it isn’t and that any prospect of seeing such a series on our televisions any time soon isn’t likely. According to Dungey, initial talk of a Star Wars TV series was “blown out of proportion” and its potential existence at ABC is “far into the future”:
That was sort of a conversation at TCA that got blown way out of proportion. We have had some conversations in general about wanting to find a way to bring something from the Lucas Star Wars Universe to ABC, but that’s far into the future. The focus at the moment for Lucas is on the current stuff that they’re doing on the film side and then, of course, they do have the stuff that they are doing on XD.
ABC has discussed a Star Wars TV series with Disney a few times in the past, but those talks have never given rise to anything specific – at least not to the public. What we do know is that prior to Disney’s purchase of Lucasfilm, George Lucas had been interested in creating a Star Wars TV series called Star Wars: Underworld. The writer/director had written 100 episodes with the aim of writing a total of 400, but as it turned out the series would have been too expensive to create at the time. Whether or not it is in fact these episodes that could one day be the springboard for an ABC series currently remains an unknown, but intriguing prospect.
At the moment, Star Wars fans certainly have no shortage of material with which to be entertained by. A Star Wars TV series would definitely be an exciting development, but as fans saw with the prequel anthology films, anything Star Wars related needs to have just the right timing and structure to deliver on the level that fans expect from the franchise. Better that ABC and Disney take their time in developing a TV series rather than rush into something just to break new ground.
In the meantime, Star Wars fans have plenty to look forward to with the arrival of Star Wars: Episode VIII next December as well as the Han Solo film (which is currently aiming for a 2018 release) and the ongoing Star Wars animated TV series on Disney XD, Star Wars Rebels. The most important thing to keep in mind, however, is that more Star Wars is always on the way.