Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and The Mandalorian will have panels at this year's D23 Expo, and here are the dates and times fans should mark down before the event. 2019 is going to be one of the most significant years for the galaxy far, far away. Not only does Star Wars 9 officially end the Skywalker saga after 42 years, The Mandalorian marks the franchise's first foray into live-action television. Lucasfilm has big plans for the Disney+ streaming service, as they're working on a Rogue One prequel starring Diego Luna's Cassian Andor and possibly an Obi-Wan series with Ewan McGregor.
As has become standard practice for Lucasfilm, very little information is known about either Star Wars 9 or The Mandalorian. Both were present during Celebration Chicago in April, but didn't have much of a footprint during San Diego Comic-Con last month. That was because Disney was planning on using D23 as a showcase for the latest round of promotion. With the convention taking place this weekend, we're spotlighting the days and times fans need to watch out for as they keep tabs on the latest information.
There are two panels that Star Wars fans will want to watch out for. The first is the Disney+ Showcase, which takes place on Friday, August 23 from 3:30 - 5 pm PST. On Saturday, August 24 there's Go Behind the Scenes with The Walt Disney Studios from 10 am - 12 pm PST. Unfortunately, neither of these panels will be live-streamed, but Screen Rant will cover all of the major reveals.
The Mandalorian will be a centerpiece of the Disney+ Showcase, as the Mouse House continues to build up hype for their streaming service. It's been reported there should be a trailer premiering, though that hasn't been officially confirmed. If there is new footage revealed, it'll be interesting to see if it's shared with the general public. Lucasfilm screened a sizzle reel during Celebration, but that was an exclusive meant only for attendees. But now that The Mandalorian is less than three months away from debuting, it seems like a good time to rev up promotional efforts and get people excited about what's in store. Hopefully, any sneak peek will indeed be a proper trailer that establishes the tone and feel. There's also a chance more information about the Rogue One prequel or the Obi-Wan show is announced, but The Mandalorian will be the primary focus.
At Behind the Scenes with The Walt Disney Studios, there won't be a new Star Wars 9 trailer, but there should be a behind-the-scenes sizzle reel. At this stage in the marketing campaigns for The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, similar sizzle reels were released online. Obviously, the reel won't spoil any major plot details, but it will offer glimpses of new footage and generate further buzz (Sith Troopers, perhaps?). It's important to keep in mind Star Wars is sharing this panel with Marvel, Pixar, and Disney's in-house division, so there likely won't be too much time to dedicate to The Rise of Skywalker. It's also highly unlikely there are any details about the next wave of Star Wars films coming out between 2022-2026. There's another Celebration planned for next August, and that seems like a better venue to focus on the future.
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019