A month before The Last Jedi hit theaters, Lucasfilm announced that director Rian Johnson would be creating a brand new Star Wars trilogy.
The announcement came after Johnson reportedly declined an offer to direct Episode IX, and instead the studio gave him a brand new trilogy of films. In a statement at the time, Lucasfilm President Kathy Kennedy called watching Rian work on The Last Jedi “one of the great joys of my career,” which is certainly high praise for one of the most successful and accomplished producers in film history! The film remains the smoothest Star Wars production to date in the Disney era.
But in the years since that announcement, as other Star Wars announcements have come (and some of them have gone) without any official update on the trilogy, some people have wondered if it was secretly cancelled. They cite the segment of fans who didn’t like The Last Jedi as the reason why it’s possible, ignoring the fact that plenty of fans loved it, that the movie was exceptionally well-reviewed by critics, and was the ninth-highest grossing movie in film history when it released (it’s currently 14th). At the same time, Kennedy didn’t mention anything about it during December’s Disney Investor Day, leaving some to wonder if it wasn’t happening (never mind that Kevin Feige’s film wasn’t mentioned either).
But, as he has over the past few years, Johnson has once again confirmed that yes, indeed, it is happening!
The latest confirmation came on Monday night, when Sariah Wilson interviewed Johnson and then tweeted this out afterward:
Presumably, the reason we haven’t heard much more about it is because Johnson is giving a few other projects priority at the moment, such as the sequel to Knives Out, but will return to the galaxy far, far away soon enough. Timing-wise, Disney is on a bit of a hiatus from Star Wars feature films for the next few years, focusing instead on Disney+, before Rogue Squadron will release in December 2023. From there, it sounds like we’ll get a Star Wars feature film every other year. So Johnson’s film probably wouldn’t come until 2025 at the earliest, from that schedule, which means that there’s still plenty of time.
For now, I’m just really thrilled that it’s still happening. I loved The Last Jedi, and I can’t wait to see what he does with a blank slate of Star Wars storytelling as well. I’m excited for all of the upcoming Star Wars projects and films, but this one has to be very near the top of the list.