It’s a little bit crazy to think about just how much Star Wars expanded in the years after the Disney takeover. Barring the original trilogy and the prequel trilogy, and not counting the rather successful The Clone Wars animated series, Star Wars projects were few and far in-between. There was a plethora of them in the videogame industry for instance, but not so much on television screens. Well, there was The Mandalorian, then Boba Fett, and now boom – there’s at least nine of them! Crazy, right?
This was Disney’s guinea pig, I would say – testing the waters to see what kind of a response a Star Wars series released via Disney+ would get. The answer was: an extremely positive one. It was a short series, with short episodes editing in a stile reminiscent of the original trilogy, and using a good mix of old and new in order to both attract those nostalgic for more Star Wars, as well as hordes of new fans. The most brilliant decision, however, was in the form of Baby Yoda – loved by all, and perhaps making back the investment several times over in merchandising alone.
We met with Boba Fett many years before as part of the Star Wars films, and then we saw him again in a number of episodes of The Mandalorian’s second season. Then, he got his own spin-off series, along with his mercenary friend Fennec Shand, during which the two of them undertake a journey to Tatooine to take back Jabba the Hutt’s old territory. It’s good fun and all, but clearly cannot compare to The Mandalorian’s highs – but remains a solid Star Wars experience.
This one’s scheduled to premiere in 2023, and is yet another spin-off from The Mandalorian. Spinning stories of the secondary characters from The Mandalorian is not a premiere anymore – and this series will centre upon the adventures of Ahsoka Tano, played by Rosario Dawson. Not much is known so far, save from a few other actors that will star win it, so we’ll wait and see what it’s going to be about.
A character who needs absolutely no introduction is Obi-Wan Kenobi, AKA Leia’s only hope. In fact, the series follows the Jedi Master as he attempts to rescue the Princess from the Empire, and his former Padawan, Anakin – who is now Darth Vader. Starring Ewan McGregor as Kenobi, the series got the casting very right, and while the story is an exciting one, it’s also quite a well known and well walked path of Star Wars. Much criticism was aimed at the writing per se, and it being sub-par Star Wars that is just meant to introduce younger viewers into the overall story – without having much Star Wars about it.
This is where a lot of Disney’s marketing budget went recently, as I’ve been bombarded by a huge amount of Andor ads over the last couple of months. This one is starting this year, and it’s a prequel to Rogue One – following Cassian Andor on his path of becoming a hero for the Rebellion, and a foe of the Empire. It remains to be seen whether some of the similar criticism that was aimed at Obi-Wan Kenobi or The Book of Boba Fett will be relevant in Andor’s context, or whether it will take a different direction that resonates more with Rogue One’s key allure points.
There’s really not a lot to go by when it comes to this – just a 2023 release date, Jude Law as playing some sort of role, and a few words about the main plot – which revolves around 10 year old kids who get lost in the Star Wars universe. Again, it seems that Disney is going for some sort of ‘introduction to the universe’ sort of project aimed at younger generations.
Just like the one above, there are very few things known about The Acolyte – 2023 seems to be the year of release as well, and the plot details are even more vague, pretty much only stating that it will be a series of adventures set towards the end of the High Republic era.
In case you saw this title in isolation and thought that it would be a biopic about Formula 1 driver Lando Norris – it’s not, it’s yet another Star Wars project. We’re guessing it’s earlier in its production cycle, as no information at all is offered, save for the fact that it will follow the adventures of Lando Calrissian, which we could already pretty much guess from the title.
Although the 2025 release date means it will be quite a while until we will be watching this, I must say I am quite excited about it. After all, it is centered around our favourite droids, R2D2 and 3CPO, as we explore their adventures alongside old acquaintances and new characters as well. Good to mention that this will be an animated series, and should be an extra reason for us to maintain our Disney+ subscriptions, or reactivate them in 2025!