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).
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 and getting approval from “Rogue Squadron” novelist Michael Stackpole, 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.
Then, though, Lucasfilm, Ltd. 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.”
While Jenkins goes back to work on her Star Wars film, that leaves the door open for either Oscar-winning Marvel Cinematic Universe director Taika Waititi or Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige to be the next director in the franchise.
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.”
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.
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.
At the time, 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….
Due to all of this — and the fact that production on Feige’s Star Wars movie has not seemed to move quickly — most people in the fandom were leaning toward Waititi’s movie taking the 2023 spot.
Now, however, it has become clear that will not be the case, throwing Lucasfilm’s entire Star Wars release schedule into even more apparent chaos. During his press rounds for Thor: Love and Thunder (2022), Waititi was asked if he would finally start shooting his Star Wars installment this year:
“Not this year. I’m going to be in New Zealand from August until the end of the year with [HBO Max series] Our Flag Means Death and [Apple TV+ pilot] Time Bandits and during that time I will still be writing.”
Waititi added: “I’m still trying to figure out what the story is.”
It is intriguing that Waititi indicated he hasn’t finished writing his film, as he previously confirmed he was scouting locations in 2020 and that the script is “very me.” This means there is the possibility that Waititi, much like Jenkins, has also returned to the drawing board in some capacity.
By all counts, then, Feige’s Star Wars movie should now hold the 2023 spot, but there has been absolutely no confirmation of this.
It is important to note that, despite mounds of evidence to the contrary, Star Wars: Episode VIII – The Last Jedi (2017) director, Rian Johnson, has said that his previously announced — and seemingly shelved — trilogy has not actually been axed, but has been delayed.
There’s always an off chance that the Knives Out director has been secretly putting together his “broom boy” trilogy behind closed doors, though this feels remarkably unlikely.
In addition to all of this, Mandalorian creator Jon Favreau and Lucasfilm Creative Director Dave Filoni are rumored to be working on their own Star Wars movie, potentially featuring Pedro Pascal (Din Djarin), Rosario Dawson (Ahsoka Tano), Giancarlo Esposito (Moff Gideon), Temuera Morrison (Boba Fett), and the rest of the “Mando-Verse” crew.
Again, there is no confirmation of this project at this time but Pascal has hinted that a film is “inevitable,” though did not indicate any type of timeline. It is also unknown if a Mandalorian movie would debut on Disney+ or in theaters.
The odds are good that things are less chaotic at Lucasfilm than they seem, but it certainly appears that the upcoming Star Wars movie release schedule has been shuffled so much recently that there is no clearcut answer to what film will hit theaters next December.
What Star Wars movie do you think will release next?