When Qi’ra showed up in The War of the Bounty Hunters comic, a stunning reveal that got fans speculating, there was discussion about whether her appearance made it more or less likely that there were current plans for her to show up in a live-action series soon.
The argument that it was now more likely went like this: Qi’ra’s appearance meant that Lucasfilm was bringing her back to the forefront of Star Wars storytelling that would tie-in to a coming story, like The Book of Boba Fett, by building hype and renewing interest in her character. On the flip side, the argument that it was now less likely went like this: Qi’ra’s appearance in a comic book meant that Lucasfilm didn’t have any current plans to further her story in a series, which meant that Charles Soule had free reign to continue the story in this medium instead.
We should recognize that we can’t really say for sure either way right now, as none of us know all that Lucasfilm has planned. However I will say that it looks likely that the argument that Qi’ra’s appearance makes it less likely is the correct one.
1. First, actress Emilia Clarke said that she’s heard nothing about a return, though she would love to do so. Now it certainly isn’t unheard of for actors to lie about a potential involvement to preserve secrecy – one need look no further than Ewan McGregor for proof – but it should still count for something and should factor into the equation.
2. Second, Qi’ra’s appearance in the comics is moving beyond just a fun reveal and into a starring role. She had a significant role the War of the Bounty Hunters five-issue miniseries, and we then learned that it was just the first chapter of a trilogy planned by Charles Soule – with the next chapter being the comic series Crimson Reign, which stars Qi’ra and Crimson Dawn. This gives the clear impression that though they do plan to tell a story with Qi’ra, they plan to do so in the comics rather than on the screen.
3. And third, a recent tweet from Pablo Hidalgo got me thinking about how this sort of thing has been handled in the past. In a thread on humorous fan theories prior to film releases, he mentioned the example of Aurra Sing and Attack of the Clones: “Aurra Sing featured in a lot of pre-Ep II rumors. There was a whole website dedicated to her. Turns out, the reason she appeared in so much tie-in fiction from ’99-’02 is because she was “freed up” by not factoring in any other movies.”
I assume my reasons for bringing this up are immediately relevant, as Hidalgo mentions that the reason other tie-in stories were told with Sing was precisely because there were not any plans for her, rather than the other way around. And I think the recent Star Wars storytelling has only furthered this reality, and we can see it going both ways. For example, there was a big storytelling push for Captain Phasma prior to The Last Jedi (with both a comic and a novel). And while she did have a role in the film, it was smaller than most (including myself) expected. Maybe that’s precisely why she was the one given such attention in the tie-in material! As an example from the other side, consider the incredible lack of stories about Luke Skywalker during the sequel trilogy! It was enough to drive fans like me a bit crazy, and thankfully it seems the era is finally starting to open up with major Luke stories, but the reason why there wasn’t more stories about Luke was because he was such a significant part of the sequel films and their storyline.
So because of these three reasons, I don’t think there are any immediate plans for Lucasfilm to continue Qi’ra’s story in a Disney+ series, so they are instead telling the story in the comics. And honestly, I’m just happy we’re getting more stories about Qi’ra, and that we’re getting some significant and exciting stories in the comics with a fantastic author in Charles Soule telling them.