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Is the future of Star Wars a Marvel-style connected universe?

New rumours suggest that the post-Rise of Skywalker series could look very different

Published: Tuesday, 21st January 2020 at 10:39 am

Since Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker finally came to cinemas in December 2019, one big question has surfaced – what’s next for Star Wars at the movies?


Yes LucasFilm have plenty on with Disney+ series like The Mandalorian, the Obi-Wan Kenobi prequel and that Rogue One spin-off, and there’s other TV series like Star Wars: Resistance and the Clone Wars still keeping the franchise alive. But when it comes to films, there’s nothing officially announced for anytime soon.

Rian Johnson might still be making a trilogy, but there are no details or release dates and that project seems to be spinning its wheels. The Game of Thrones creators’ trilogy (possibly about the origins of the Jedi) was cancelled, as was a planned film about Mos Eisley spaceport and any sequels to Solo.

Marvel’s Kevin Feige is also working on a movie, but based on recent track records there’s no guarantee it’ll see the light of day.

All we know at the moment is that there’s a 2022 release date reserved for a future Star Wars film, with no details about what exactly that film will be like. Or at least, that’s what we thought – because a new rumour has emerged suggesting exactly what Disney and LucasFilm’s big plan might be for Star Wars going forward.

The idea? In short, to copy what Disney already did for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, creating an interconnected series of films about Jedi tracking down artefacts and villains. In full, it’s slightly more complicated.

Apparently spinning off from an upcoming book and comic-book project called Project Luminous, the rumour (sourced by MakingStarWars and Ziro.Hu) suggests that a future Star Wars series could be set 300-400 years before the events of the main saga, during a period of galactic governance called the “High Republic” era.

Basically, it’s when the Republic seen in the prequel movies was at its height, the Jedi were all over the place doing good deeds and The Emperor wasn’t even a twinkle in Papa Palpatine’s eye (though Yoda would be alive as a young Jedi).

Frank Oz's Yoda in Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (Lucasfilm, HF)
Frank Oz's Yoda in Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (Lucasfilm, HF) Lucasfilm

Rather than another trilogy, this new take on Star Wars would be more like the Marvel Cinematic Universe, with various Jedi and other characters individually travelling round the galaxy to explore, track down ancient Sith Gods (the new Infinity Stones?) and occasionally teaming up and interacting in the style of the Avengers movies.

The stories would be separate, but connected, with the Jedi characters given special characteristics and abilities to help them stand out in the style of superheroes.

And if this sounds a bit pie in the sky for you, since this rumour first emerged there has actually been a hint that it could be genuine in official Star Wars media. In the ongoing Kylo Ren comic published by Marvel (which tells the story of the younger years of Adam Driver’s troubled villain) an offhand comment from one character actually mentions the “High Republic” era by name, noting that “it was a time of greatly expanded Jedi activity throughout the galaxy.”

If the rumours are true, this nod could be a gentle seeding of an MCU-with-Jedi concept that will emerge in more detail over the coming months and years (it seems like an odd, slightly irrelevant detail in the comic it’s taken from). If they’re not, it’s just a coincidence that this dialogue seems to match so closely with the concept that sources have claimed is Disney’s big plan for the future.

Either way, colour us intrigued – and ready to pre-order our tickets for Star Wars: Galaxy War in 2031.


Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker is in cinemas now


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