Yesterday, Disney announced a completely armed and operational film slate, bolstered by its recently formalized acquisition of Fox. However the information introduced with it a little bit of a bombshell for Star Wars followers: new movies are coming, however they received’t begin coming till 2022, three years after The Rise of Skywalker. And that’s really fairly thrilling.
“How can much less Star Wars be a superb factor,” you may ask? Effectively, right here’s the factor: we’re not likely getting much less Star Wars. We’re simply not getting it on the large display for the subsequent few years after the Skywalker Saga involves an finish in December this 12 months. If something, for the previous few years and for the foreseeable future, we’ve had extra Star Wars than we arguably needed. An excessive amount of of a superb factor: It exists!
However that’s not the purpose I’m making right here—the purpose is that the shortage of a galaxy far, far-off on the movie show doesn’t make that galaxy any additional away from us. Star Wars is, and has been for a really lengthy whereas (even earlier than Disney bought the franchise), a sequence that lives past the auspices of the field workplace. If something, that concept has grow to be ever extra vital within the Disney Star Wars period, with the demise and rebirth of a roster of tie-in media that’s now extra formally and carefully enmeshed throughout the canon of Star Wars than the prior Expanded Universe was.
Star Wars tales—and Star Wars tales that matter, each by way of canon to the broader universe, and on a private degree to the legions of followers throughout generations world wide—exist throughout books, throughout comics, throughout TV reveals, throughout animated shorts and video games and VR apps, throughout each medium and merchandising vector you can presumably think about. We already know that a lot is on the best way—The Mandalorian, Clone Wars, and the Cassian Andor present can be on Disney+. Resistance will proceed on the Disney Channel. Marvel’s not going to cease publishing Star Wars comics any time quickly, and Del Rey and Lucasfilm publishing aren’t simply going to cease having book after book after book after, err, audio drama-book-thing. All these plans and tasks will proceed, not simply in the run-up to The Rise of Skywalker however for the long run past, into the unknown areas of those three, Star Wars movie-less years.
So there’s going to be a shit-ton of Star Wars anyway. Why is that thrilling? As a result of with out the preface of getting to be tied extra extensively into teasing what’s to come back within the mainline films, this materials has the possibility to take action far more with the galaxy far, far-off. Each Star Wars film launched below the Disney banner has introduced with it a veritable swathe of ancillary media to tie into it. That is media that exists to flesh out the Star Wars galaxy, positive, however extra particularly exists to contextualize the movie venture it’s connected to—whether or not it’s the extra formal “The Journey To…” branding for the principle movie, or the looser tie-in campaigns performed for Rogue One and Solo. Heck, even the theme park’s getting one! However think about what Star Wars publishing can do when it doesn’t essentially have to be beholden to tying in carefully to both the films which might be on the best way, or the films we have already got.
That’s to not say that materials doesn’t exist already.
We’re seeing a resurgence in the meanwhile of tales being informed in and across the prequel period for instance—tales that transcend the thrill of the Clone Wars themselves, however the nonetheless comparatively underutilized but dramatically fertile durations earlier than and across the occasions of Assault of the Clones and The Phantom Menace. It was, till not too long ago, a interval that remained obscured as the present canon focuses on the brand new trilogy or reliving the interval of the unique movies. However past simply attending to shine a highlight on uncared for durations of the movie saga already, with out the onus of there being a brand new Star Wars film to help yearly, there’s immediately much more alternative to experiment with the tales all of the books, comics, and video games can ship. Much more area to inform new sorts of tales, full of new planets and new characters (and maybe even new time periods!) that don’t essentially have something to do with merely contextualizing the continuing saga on the field workplace.
It’s an opportunity to invigorate the franchise for followers whereas additionally giving the informal audiences who solely sometimes work together with Star Wars via the movie releases a little bit of a break—a little bit of an opportunity to revitalize Star Wars as a particular film occasion extra so than a only a regular occurrence every December. And in the event that they do want extra Star Wars fixes? Like I stated up prime, it’s not like there’s not going to be any new Star Wars in these three years, anyway.
The potential introduced forth by an absence of Star Wars in theaters for such an prolonged time frame—three years may not sound like quite a bit, but it surely’s a lot compared to the present franchise deluge, be it with Star Wars or, err, each different Disney property proper now!—is fascinating to contemplate. The prospect for Star Wars media to start out boldly exploring what the franchise could be, and what sort of tales it may inform, in a interval the place there aren’t new films to lean on as “hooks” might result in the form of variety Star Wars needs at giant with a view to maintain persisting because the ever-present juggernaut it has grow to be.
It’s time to let previous issues relaxation, to loosely paraphrase a sure angry young Solo. And whereas it does, one thing new and thrilling may get the possibility to flourish as a replacement.
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