Game of Thrones creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are creating a new series of Star Wars films that will remain separate from Rian Johnson's upcoming standalone trilogy. J.J. Abrams is currently hard-at-work developing the forthcoming final installment in Lucasfilm's Star Wars sequel trilogy, Star Wars: Episode IX, and it seems that it will truly be the end of the Skywalker saga, as the studio now has multiple films in development that remain separate from the core Skywalker story.
Before Star Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Jedi hit screens in December, Lucasfilm announced plans to develop a new Star Wars trilogy with Johnson at the helm. The acclaimed director is writing and directing the first installment in the new trilogy, which will feature new characters, locations, and stories, but he's not sure if he will continue behind the camera for the second and third installments. Still, it's a brand new trilogy that immediately follows the conclusion of the Star Wars sequel trilogy. But it's not the only project Lucasfilm has in the works.
While at first glance it may seem like David Benioff and D.B. Weiss would be working with Rian Johnson on his new Star Wars trilogy, that's actually not the case. Benioff and Weiss' Star Wars films are not only be separate from the Skywalker saga, but they aren't part of Johnson's trilogy either. At this point, Lucasfilm has multiple Star Wars films in the works that are wholly original and unconnected to each other. Lucasfilm's press release stated:
"These new films will be separate from both the episodic Skywalker saga and the recently-announced trilogy being developed by Rian Johnson, writer-director of Star Wars: The Last Jedi."
An interesting detail from Lucasfilm's press release is that Benioff and Weiss are working on a new "series" of Star Wars films. It doesn't specifically mention a trilogy, as was the case with the press release announcing Rian Johnson's new films. Perhaps this means that they are working on a brand new saga to replace the Skywalker saga? They're arguably the right people to shepherd such a venture.
It's unclear when this deal started to take shape, but it's fair to assume that a fair amount of perfect timing was involved. HBO is currently filming the final season of Game of Thrones, which is slated to air in 2019, and the network plans on continuing their relationship with Benioff and Weiss by developing Confederate, their alternate-history drama set after the American Civil War. But following widespread backlash, Benioff and Weiss mentioned that they aren't "actively developing" Confederate at this time. That doesn't mean the show is canceled, however, but it does allow them time and space to shepherd their new Star Wars series.
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019