The Star Wars galaxy continues to expand. While there hasn’t been a theatrical Star Wars release since 2019’s Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise Of Skywalker, the world created by George Lucas has been releasing new content directly onto Disney+ instead. One of the most mysterious of these projects is Skeleton Crew (2023), unveiled at the 2022 Star Wars Celebration. Here’s everything we know so far about the show…
What Is Skeleton Crew?
This year is set to be a bumper one for expanding a galaxy far, far away, with a new season of Pedro Pascal-starring The Mandalorian (2019), Rosario Dawson’s solo Ahsoka series (2023) and new animated adventures in the form of the new season of Star Wars: The Bad Batch (2021) and Star Wars: Young Jedi Adventures (2023). But Skeleton Crew is a little unusual among those, as it doesn’t feature any characters which have appeared in any other Star Wars shows so far (at least that we know of).
Producer Jon Favreau, who spearheaded Star Wars small-screen efforts with The Mandalorian alongside Dave Filoni, confirmed to Variety that none of the show’s characters would first appear in The Mandalorian first. That’s different to their approach so far, which saw The Book of Boba Fett (2021) and the upcoming Ahsoka continue stories that had been established in The Mandalorian.
However, Favreau isn’t against characters crossing over in the future, continuing an MCU-style approach to these Star Wars titles. Speaking last year to Entertainment Weekly, Favreau said it could be a possibility down the line.
While details for the show have largely been kept under wraps, we do know that it will be set in the same era as the bulk of the other live-action Star Wars shows, post-Star Wars Episode VI – Return of the Jedi (1983). And it makes sense that they’d continue to mine this spot in the timeline for content: that area between the original trilogy and the sequel trilogy is one still largely explored in books and comic books over Star Wars cinematic, televisual content.
It’s rich in opportunities to tell new stories and introduce new characters, while maintaining a relatively-familiar background of the Rebels versus the Imperials, although admittedly, both sides are in very different positions compared to during the main throes of the Galactic Civil War.
In this point in the timeline, the Empire finds itself either on-the-run or fighting feral. Portions of it have either ran into the depths of the Unknown Regions, or hidden out on Outer Rim worlds, far from the limited reach of the burgeoning New Republic. Those that have chosen to continue to fight for the Imperial doctrine have become desperate, adrift in a galaxy within which their leader, Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) is (seemingly) dead.
Related: Jude Law’s ‘Star Wars: Skeleton Crew’ Character Revealed at D23
We’ve seen how The Mandalorian has hinted at the Wild West-style quality to the universe in this moment, with Din Djarin (Pedro Pascal) creating a living out of hunting down the criminals and otherwise operating across the galaxy. He also has his fair share of run-ins with the Imperial regime’s remnants, primarily Giancarlo Esposito’s Moff Gideon and his nefarious plans for Jedi youngling Grogu.
In terms of Skeleton Crew‘s story, all we know so far is that it follows a group of wayward children, who get lost in the galaxy and have to find their way home.
Lucasfilm are investing big in Skeleton Crew, committing to a reported budget of $136 million dollars. The first season of The Mandalorian, comparably, received $100 million. And we know production on the show has now finished: back in January, Deadline reported that stunt co-ordinator George Cottle marked the close of production on his Instagram in a since-deleted post, writing:
“That’s a Wrap on Skeleton Crew!! Once again I was lucky enough to be surrounded by some of the most amazing stunt performers I have ever worked with!! I fell so lucky to work with you all! Thank you for all your hard work and dedication! So so excited for this one!”
They obviously have a big vision for this new introduction to the Star Wars world.
Who Is In Skeleton Crew?
What we do know of Skeleton Crew is that it is set to show us a different perspective on this era, with a large portion of the cast made up of younger characters. Last year, Vanity Fair confirmed that Star Wars had been casting for the show being run by the MCU’s Spider-Man director, Jon Watts:
The show takes place during the post–Return of the Jedi reconstruction that follows the fall of the Empire, the same as The Mandalorian, but its plot remains a secret. It’s created and executive-produced by director Jon Watts and writer Chris Ford, who made Spider-Man: Homecoming for Marvel. A casting notice has called for four children, around 11 to 12 years old. Inside Lucasfilm, the show is being described as a galactic version of classic Amblin coming-of-age adventure films of the ’80s.
Obviously, we now know this mysterious show is Skeleton Crew. But it isn’t exclusively a young cast. They will actually be led by a movie star — none other than Captain Marvel (2019) and Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore (2022) star Jude Law.
Fans received a first look at Law’s character at Disney’s D23 Expo last year, revealing him to be a human in his 30s or 40s, wearing what looks like rugged adventurer clothing and standing in front of an obscured group of youths.
The first image of Jude Law in the new Star Wars series Skeleton Crew released. The series, set in the New Republic era, is about a group of kids who get lost in the galaxy. #D23Expo
The first image of Jude Law in the new Star Wars series Skeleton Crew released. The series, set in the New Republic era, is about a group of kids who get lost in the galaxy. #D23Expo pic.twitter.com/sbMBeVoQvo
— Ashley Carter (@AshleyLCarter1) September 10, 2022
The rest of Skeleton Crew’s cast remains a mystery for the moment, but we will surely find out more soon as this year’s Star Wars Celebration will undoubtedly provide updates and fresh looks at many of the upcoming projects in the Star Wars universe.
Skeleton Crew is expected to be released on Disney+ later this year.
Will you be watching Skeleton Crew when it’s released? Tell us in the comments below.