Ever since Disney purchased Lucasfilm in 2012, plenty of the subsequent announcements have been exciting, but today’s news finally matches the same level of excitement for me: Rian Johnson, director of the upcoming The Last Jedi, will be creating a new Star Wars trilogy with all brand-new characters, while a live-action TV show will see the light of day when Disney’s streaming service arrives! Holy mother of moons is this amazing news! Head below as I try to unpack the announcements.
For starters, giving Johnson a whole new trilogy of his own is a giant endorsement of his work on The Last Jedi, so if you weren’t already hyped for the film, this might finally push you over the edge. This also clears up why J.J. Abrams was brought on board to direct Episode IX after Colin Trevorrow was kicked from the project instead of Johnson: they had bigger plans for him. The fact that this trilogy will feature new characters, no Skywalkers, and will introduce us to, “…a corner of the galaxy that Star Wars lore has never before explored,” is beyond exciting. Does “never before explored” even mean stuff Legends never touched on? Either way, a fresh start and fresh look at another part of the Star Wars galaxy, away from the Skywalker Saga, beyond even the A Star Wars Story spinoffs, is just too good of an idea to pass up. Carving out a whole new section of the galaxy really allows Johnson a blank canvas, unhindered by the current lore, and I’m curious as hell to see where it all leads. A Star Wars Story films are a halfway point to this trilogy, as they are letting us see new parts of the canon, but they are forced to fit within the confines of the films. In effect, Rian Johnson’s new trilogy will be a new “original trilogy” so to speak, as even though it’s not a reboot or something, it can be its own separate thing and will feel like a new splash in the galaxy far, far away. The only sobering bit from this news is this ends up being yet another lack of diversity behind the camera for Star Wars, but considering Johnson is only writing and directing the first film, there’s potential once again for Lucasfilm not to let the world down and give someone who isn’t a white dude a chance to direct/write/etc.
My favorite reaction to this news is from Rian Johnson via Twitter:
Obviously I hope you like The Last Jedi. But man now I REALLY hope you like The Last Jedi.
— Rian Johnson (@rianjohnson) November 9, 2017
UPDATE 12/17/17: Having now seen The Last Jedi (read my review here), I can honestly say I am even more excited for this eventual trilogy than when it was first announced. Seriously, if he can bring so many new and exciting things to the table in a main saga film, I can’t wait to see what he has in store for three movies with free reign!
While rumors have been swirling for years now, especially after the Disney deal, Bob Iger has confirmed Lucasfilm will also have a live-action TV show on the way, exclusively airing on Disney’s streaming service set to go live in 2019. Just like with Johnson’s new trilogy, the details for the show are also slim at this time, as we don’t even know if it’ll air in time to help launch the new service or not. It would be a smart move to have it ready for the service’s 2019 launch, because if CBS could get the Trekkies to dive into it’s All-Access service, you can bet a live-action Star Wars TV show will pull in subscribers (like this Star Wars fan) no problem. Even if it doesn’t begin when the service airs, we’ll be there. Waiting. While I can’t even begin to imagine and hope what Rian Johnson will have in store for us, I can begin to imagine and hope for the TV series: Doctor Aphra! Her archaeological exploits and morally ambiguous lifestyle offers plenty of untapped potential in a TV series, as while the comic has been absolutely excellent, there’s always more room for Aphra. And as a pick for an actress, I’d highly agree with Catrina on casting Jaime Chung! Let the TV series speculation begin (I already love this idea of a Battlestar Galactica-esque series of the Imperials fleeing into the Unknown Regions)!
What excites you most about the news? Are you more eager for a good TV series or another trilogy? What/where/when would you want either to be set? Share with us your thoughts below in the comments or on social media!