The year has just begun, but 2019 is shaping up to be one of the best for Star Wars fans in decades. Star Wars has content in every form of media this year. From animated series, comics, books, television shows and films, the franchise is maintaining its presence on all platforms. On top of all of this, Star Wars is taking the convention scene by storm with the return of Star Wars: Celebration in April. This year the convention will be held in Chicago and fans are expecting plenty of reveals from the five day event. However, we believe only one of the Star Wars projects releasing this year will make a lasting impact on how fans consume Star Wars content for the next decade.
The Mandalorian is an upcoming television series and the first Star Wars show to debut on Disney’s new streaming service, Disney+. The ten episode series starring Pedro Pascal (Narcos) as “a lone Mandalorian gunfighter in the outer reaches of the galaxy” will be executively produced by Iron Man director Jon Favreau and Star Wars: The Clone Wars supervising director Dave Filoni. The series is set to take place after the events of Return of the Jedi.
What makes this upcoming series so impactful is that it serves as a preview for the majority of on-screen content that Star Wars fans will be consuming for the next decade. With no announcements or rumors to be seen, it is safe to say fans will not be seeing Star Wars on the big screen in 2020. Two projects have been formally announced in the form of Rian Johnson’s trilogy as well as the series of films from Game of Thrones creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss. However, with Benioff and Weiss wrapping up the final season of Game of Thrones and Rian Johnson working on his upcoming film Knives Out, it is unlikely that either project will enter production until 2020 with a 2021 or a 2022 release.
David Benioff and D.B. Weiss
This means the only live-action Star Wars content being released over the next year and a half will be the upcoming Mandalorian series and the announced Cassian Andor series starting Diego Luna. The Mandalorian launches Fall 2019, with the Cassian series entering production this year, most likely aiming for a 2020 release. With how subjective and critical the Star Wars fanbase has been since the Disney merger, this content must be top tier in order to please as many fans of the franchise as possible. If either show is massively unsuccessful with fans, it could create a major issue for Disney and Lucasfilm until the next film release, which will most certainly enter new territory for the franchise since Episode IX serves as the final installment of the Skywalker saga. Luckily, The Mandalorian is shaping up to be the most exciting Star Wars project since the merger.
Diego Luna as Cassian Andor
With a cast that includes Gina Carano (Deadpool), Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad), Emily Swallow (Supernatural), Carl Weathers (Predator), Omid Abtahi (American Gods), Werner Herzog (Grizzly Man), and Nick Nolte (Warrior), there is no shortage of talent behind the production. However, it might be the directing talent that is even more impressive with the aforementioned Dave Filoni directing the first episode and Deborah Chow (Jessica Jones), Rick Famuyiwa (Dope), Bryce Dallas Howard (Solemates), and Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok) directing other episodes throughout the first season of the series.
Not only is this cast and crew talented, it is greatly diverse. Star Wars has not escaped the criticism Hollywood has faced the last decade for whitewashing and lack of diversity both in casting and production crew. This new team behind the series opens the doors for creators from all backgrounds to enter A Galaxy Far, Far Away.
If all goes well for this series, expect to see a Star Wars film every other year or possibly every two years, with a television series filling in the gap. While this may concern fans of the franchise, the budget for these series will make each episode feel as cinematic as any Star Wars film.
If this doesn’t sound impressive yet, the story possibilities open many new avenues for the franchise. The story will explore a mostly untouched era of the franchise and characters will have connections to the Original Trilogy. Taika Waititi, who is also directing an episode, has said that his character will have some form of connection to Boba Fett. He also has stated that the series will have a tone similar to Original Trilogy.
With so much riding on the series, The Mandalorian is fully prepared to surprise and impress Star Wars fans. This series will set a precedent for the next decade of Star Wars content. Meanwhile we are sitting here still waiting for the Obi-Wan Kenobi film announcement.
Where do you think the future of Star Wars is heading? What are you looking forward to most? Do you think The Mandalorian will have as big of an impact as we do? Let us know in the comments and on our social media!