Back at the Disney Investor Day in 2020, as Lucasfilm President Kathy Kennedy announced a host of shows and movies in the Star Wars galaxy, she also announced the first spin-off shows from The Mandalorian, Ahsoka and Rangers of the New Republic. While the latter has since been shelved, Kennedy mentioned that these inter-connected stories, and others like it, would culminate in a “climactic story event.”
Is that still the plan?
Recently, The Wrap asked The Mandalorian executive producer, director, writer, and co-showrunner Dave Filoni about that very question. In a lengthy response, he acknowledged that it’s possible to have both a climactic event and for The Mandalorian to keep going after it, meaning it wouldn’t necessarily spell the end of this series. He talked about how they are building characters, politics, and events in this post-Return of the Jedi era and will continue to add to that with more shows and more characters as the team collaborates together.
But, in the end, he said:
“I think that the reality of there being a big event in this time period is very real, is all I would say to that. But yes, if Jon wanted to keep making “Mandalorian” stories, as long as he does not get bumped off in said titanic event, then they, I suppose, could continue. There doesn’t seem to be any lack of interest in Grogu and Mando, that’s for sure.”
For those well-versed in Filoni-speak, he says a lot of words that don’t give an exact answer to the question, as he knows how to expertly avoid giving away anything too spoilery. But I think his acknowledgement that all of this could have a big, titanic event suggests that’s still the plan.
It probably won’t happen immediately, but I think it’s entirely possible – in fact, likely – for all of these shows to keep building off of one another and leading to a big ‘crossover’ type event, probably with Thrawn as a foe to face off against. It’s why, for all the complaining people did about how The Mandalorian was continued in The Book of Boba Fett, I think that’s actually kinda the point. These shows are meant to connect together, and while they might not always connect to that extreme (hopefully), you’ll need to keep up with the other shows to have the best sense of what happens down the road. It’s a lot like the Marvel Cinematic Universe in that sense, where they’ll have individual films that all feed into some big, epic event films where they’re brought together.
I think doing things this way could really pay off in the long run for the Mandoverse, but we’ll have to see how it all comes about. As a huge Thrawn fan I’m going to be partial to having him return in a big way, but I think having these threads connect into a big conflict makes sense. It would be thrilling TV. But to Filoni’s point, it doesn’t need to be seen as the end. It could be a story that changes things for the main characters, but so long as Din Djarin’s around, The Mandalorian could keep going.
The big takeaway, then, is probably this: the Mandoverse isn’t going anywhere. It’s here to stay, and that’s a very good thing.