After many false starts and canceled projects, Star Wars is finally ready to return to theaters. Lucasfilm announced three new upcoming standalone movies during the opening of Star Wars Celebration 2023. These new Star Wars movies include a story about the founding of the Jedi, a movie that will serve as the finale to this era of interconnected Disney+ shows, and the return of Daisy Ridley’s Rey.
And with that, the galaxy far, far away is finally going back to the big screen. Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy revealed James Mangold (Logan, Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny), Dave Filoni (The Mandalorian, Ahsoka), Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy (Ms. Marvel, Saving Face) have all been tapped to direct these new Star Wars movies.
While Lucasfilm shared few official details about the films, the little they tell us says a lot.
James Mangold’s New Star Wars Movie Tells the Story of the Force
James Mangold’s “will go back to the dawn of the Jedi,” a time set tens of thousands of years earlier than anything we’ve ever seen on screen before. That might mean we’ll meet the figure known as Prime Jedi. That’s the person who founded the Order on Ahch-To sometime around 25,000 years before the events of A New Hope. Fans already know Ahch-To well. They first saw it in The Last Jedi when it served as Luke Skywalker’s hideaway. A release additionally shares, “James Mangold will take audiences deep into the past, telling the tale of the first Jedi to wield the Force and harness it as a liberating power in an era of chaos and oppression.”
Mangold further noted to Empire that his new Star Wars movie “takes place 25,000 years before Episode IV, and it’s about the discovery of the Force.” He further shares, “I told Kathy [Kennedy, head of Lucasfilm] I wanted to make a kind of Bible movie, a kind of Ten Commandments of Star Wars – kind of a Cecil B DeMille film about the arrival of the Force, and that’s what I’ve been pecking away at between press events. That’s the idea.”
Dave Filoni’s Film Will Bring Together Many Current Disney+ Series
The next new Star Wars movie will come from franchise veteran Dave Filoni. His film “will focus on the New Republic and close out the interconnected stories told in The Mandalorian, The Book of Boba Fett, Ahsoka, and other Disney+ series.” That’s huge news for both the television and movie side of Lucasfilm. When we get a release date for Filoni’s film, we’ll know just how many more seasons of The Mandalorian we might see. Clearly, there’s already an end in sight to Din Djarin and Grogu’s story. Although, we suppose they could continue on beyond a culminating movie. A release further shares, “Dave Filoni will orchestrate the escalating war between the Imperial Remnant and the fledgling New Republic.”
Rey Will Return in Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy’s Star Wars Movie
The third and final new Star Wars movie announced will focus on the future. Obaid-Chinoy’s movie will take place after The Rise of Skywalker. It will mark the return of Daisy Ridley as Rey. Set 15 years after the ultimate defeat of the Sith, she will be trying to build a new Jedi Order. Hopefully, that goes a lot better than her mentor Luke Skywalker’s attempts.
Kathleen Kennedy shared more about the movie with Variety. She noted:
Well, we’re 15 years out from ‘Rise of Skywalker,’ so we’re post-war, post-First Order, and the Jedi are in disarray. There’s a lot of discussion around, ‘Who are the Jedi? What are they doing? What’s the state of the galaxy?’ She’s attempting to rebuild the Jedi Order, based on the books, based on what she promised Luke, so that’s where we’re going.”
Speaking to Empire, Kennedy added, “The First Order has fallen, the Jedi are in chaos – there’s even a question of how many exist anymore – and Rey’s building the New Jedi Order, based on the text that she was given and that Luke imparted on her.”
On the topic of a possible Luke Skywalker presence in the new Star Wars movie, Kennedy said: “I don’t know if we’ll spend a lot of time in flashbacks or [on] Force ghosts or things like that, but certainly, the spirit of what he represents to her is going to be significant.”
Something tells us it won’t be smooth sailing for Rey, though. The dark side of the Force has a way of always creating shadows over the galaxy far, far away, especially in theaters.
Originally published on April 7, 2023.