Lucasfilm is planning on having meetings over the course of this year to discuss possible Star Wars spinoff movies to make in the future. The studio gambled a bit with the release of Rogue One last year, but the success of that anthology film galvanized them and gave them confidence moving forward. Between the positive critical reception and $1 billion worldwide gross, it was apparent there was much interest in seeing Star Wars stories that take place outside the traditional Skywalker family saga, and fans can't wait to see what the story group comes up with next. Next year, the young Han Solo movie makes its way to theaters, but everything beyond that is a mystery.
The latest rumors on the subject suggest Lucasfilm is currently plotting three more spinoffs (Obi-Wan, Boba Fett, and a young adult romance), and they'll officially announce the 2020 film this summer. Other reports state Mr. Robot creator Sam Esmail is going to work on a script for a standalone, though nothing has been confirmed right now. It remains to be seen where Disney goes from here, but the Star Wars brain trust is going to get together to iron out their post-Episode IX plans.
In an interview with eCartelera (hat tip Star Wars News Net), Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy revealed that a script reading for Colin Trevorrow's Star Wars 9 will happen soon, as well as meetings about more spinoffs to develop:
“To be honest, we are beginning to talk about [the spinoffs] right now. We have four or five weeks immersed in the film ‘Han Solo’ and we are about to read the script of Colin Trevorrow’s Episode IX directed, so we have a lot of work at the moment. In the next six or eight months we will have some meetings about the stories that we will develop here. After 40 years of adventures, fans have so much information and so many theories about the way that can take these stories and theories that emerge are sometimes new ideas for us that we hear, read and pay attention to everything what is said. It is clear that the franchise is owned by the as much by the fans as it’s owned by [the people at Lucasfilm].”
There's a lot of interest to be gleaned from these comments, most notably Kennedy's belief that the fans own Star Wars as much as Lucasfilm. It's fascinating to consider that the powers that be follow all the wild and outrageous theories that make their way on the Internet; while some have little credibility, there are others that actually make some sense. Viewers shouldn't take Kennedy's statement that the studio is writing scripts based off of unsubstantiated hypotheses, but it's nice that Lucasfilm is taking everything into consideration before moving forward on something. Audiences would rather the creative team takes their time as opposed to rushing a movie into production. Lucasfilm understands how important Star Wars is to people, and they're doing everything they can to handle the franchise properly. In the Disney era, they've done a great job so far, so they've earned the fans' trust.
Properties like Marvel and DC reveal entire slates of films years in advance, so it's understandable why there's a craving for knowing what Star Wars movies will premiere in the next decade. But as Kennedy says, Lucasfilm is dealing with a full plate with three different films in various stages of development. Rian Johnson remains hard at work editing The Last Jedi while Han Solo makes its way through principal photography and Episode IX is in pre-production (with the filmmakers trying to decide what to do with General Leia). Kennedy and company can't be faulted for focusing more on the present than the future right now, especially since they want every movie to be as great as it can be. Time will tell what anthologies come out through the 2020s, but fans should just sit back and enjoy the ride while it lasts.
- Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018