Lucasfilm Officially Shuffles ‘Star Wars’ Movie Release Schedule

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kathleen kennedy disney investor day 2020

Credit: Disney Investor Day Live Stream 2020

During the 2020 Disney Investor Day event, Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy confirmed a number of Star Wars projects, including nearly a dozen Disney+ Original series and the next Star Wars feature film, Star Wars: Rogue Squadron, directed by Patty Jenkins (Wonder Woman, Wonder Woman 1984).

carl weathers, jon favreau, kathleen kennedy, gina carano, dave filoni, and pedro pascal take a selfie
Credit: Daniel Boczarski for Disney

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Getting the film — Disney’s first Star Wars movie project since the divisive sequel trilogy ended with Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) — off the ground, however, has seemingly been a challenge.

Despite tapping comedic writer Matthew Robinson, best known for working on The Invention of Lying with Ricky Gervais, Rogue Squadron was removed from Lucasfilm’s production schedule in November 2021. Then, however, the movie was almost immediately re-added, with its original December 2023 release date still slated at that time.

patty jenkins
Credit: Patty Jenkins Twitter

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Now, though, Lucasfilm, Ltd. has officially shuffled its Star Wars movie release schedule. Per a recent article regarding upcoming Star Wars films, “[Jenkins’s installment is now] set for a December 2027 release, as per the Disney film premiere calendar.”

Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy confirmed to Vanity Fair that Jenkins is “developing the script further.”

rogue squadron patty jenkins
Credit: Disney Investors Day Livestream

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Although little is known about the movie at this time, Jenkins has confirmed it will feature “a new cast of characters” based loosely on Michael Stackpole’s popular “Rogue Squadron” novels and LucasArts games and actor Chris Pine, who worked with Jenkins on the I Am the Night miniseries about the iconic Black Dahlia murders, has confirmed that the Rogue Squadron script is “really, really great.”

While Jenkins goes back to work on her Star Wars film, that leaves the door open for either Oscar-winning Marvel director Taika Waititi or Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige to be the next director in the franchise.

Kevin Feige at D23
Credit: D23

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Waititi’s project was originally slated for a 2025 release, with Feige’s in the 2027 spot that Rogue Squadron now occupies. Lucasfilm has not confirmed which movie will be moved up to next year.

Both Waititi and Feige have been working on script writing and location scouting. Next to nothing is known about the direction Feige’s film will take — unsurprising given his commitment to secrecy with the Marvel Cinematic Universe — but many Star Wars fans believe that Waititi’s plot was already spoiled at Investor Day.

During the announcement, Kennedy noted:

“Star Wars’ theatrical slate is pushing forward into a new future era. Taika’s approach to Star Wars will be fresh, unexpected, and unique. His enormous talent and sense of humor will ensure audiences are in for an unforgettable ride.”

kennedy waititi star wars
Credit: Disney Investor Day Livestream

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While Kennedy said this, a brand new Star Wars logo [above] — that looks a bit “stone age” instead of “space-age” — appeared on the screen behind her. The logo appears to be made from cracked rocks and almost has a The Flintstones vibe, indicating that we could be traveling way back in time for Waititi’s Star Wars movie installment.

The same viewers noticed another intriguing potential plot clue during Kennedy’s December 10, 2020 presentation. At one point, a diamond-shaped ship appeared on the screen, seemingly hurtling toward an unknown planet.

kennedy ship
Credit: Disney Investor Day Livestream

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Fans noted:

The floating pyramid-shaped structure bears a resemblance to Tho Yor, a great pyramidal ship and weapon that housed the Force-sensitive predecessors to the Jedi during the “First Migration.” Tho Yor is featured prominently in Dawn of the Jedi, a sub-series within the Star Wars franchise that encompasses both a 2012-2014 comic book series and a 2013 novel by Tim Lebbon. While Kennedy didn’t acknowledge whether the strange structure behind her was in fact Tho Yor, that hasn’t stopped fans from connecting the dots themselves….

…What makes this theory extra interesting is that Dawn of the Jedi is a “non-canon” story, as part of the pre-Disney “Legends” family of extended universe stories. Lucasfilm has made it clear that material from Legends isn’t off-limits. (The inclusion of Thrawn in new, recent stories is proof that Legends can and will be recycled.) Since Taika Waititi can theoretically and legally adapt Dawn of the Jedi, fans suspect his movie is in fact his own take on Dawn of the Jedi.

taika waititi with chris hemsworth on thor set
Credit: Marvel Studios

Related: Taika Waititi “Shouldn’t Be Allowed” to Make ‘Thor: Love and Thunder’

The Thor franchise director has not given away specific details of his Star Wars project, but has said the script will be “very me.”

What do you think about Lucasfilm’s film slate reshuffle?

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