Disney’s reported rule of waiting to announce new Star Wars movies until they are further in development only fixes part of the problem currently plaguing Lucasfilm. Though plenty of new Star Wars movies have been announced to be in the works since the 2019 release of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, Star Wars’ storytelling has primarily continued on Disney+, utilizing the TV format to the best of its ability. While the Star Wars shows have been undeniably successful, the future Star Wars movie slate is precarious, with new projects being announced and subsequently canceled before they have a chance to move past pre-production. Waiting to publicize new movies until their future is more concrete is certainly a wise decision for Disney Star Wars and Kathleen Kennedy (though this rule has already been broken with the announcement of Damon Lindelof’s possible Star Wars film), but the problem for Disney Star Wars isn’t merely premature project announcements, but rather that there seems to be no coherent vision for Star Wars’ movie future.
It’s clear that Star Wars can still attract considerable talent, despite its constant schedule changes, delays, and project cancelations. The possible alienation of creatives isn’t even Star Wars’ biggest current problem, however. Though moving past the Skywalker saga was always going to take some new creative input and the willingness to take risks, Lucasfilm needs some sort of future Star Wars movie plan going forward. They need to decide which corners of the galaxy they want to focus on, which parts of the timeline they want to explore, and which new characters to introduce so that Disney Star Wars can start building a movie legacy of its own that is separate from George Lucas’ original Skywalker vision. The Star Wars TV shows have found success in moving away from legacy characters, with the notable exception of Obi-Wan Kenobi, and in telling stories that feel more grounded yet still worthy of exploration, like the currently airing Andor and previous seasons of The Mandalorian. The Disney+ Star Wars shows aren’t perfect, but their development always feels like it is being done with purpose and a clear vision. None of the recent Star Wars movie announcements have felt truly concrete, leaving too much room for creative differences and narrative gaps to fester, and this is a mistake that needs to be rectified.
Why Disney Is Struggling To Make New Star Wars Movies
After the completion of the Star Wars sequel trilogy, many questioned what Disney would focus on next. Despite the success of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, its anthology counterpart Solo: A Star Wars Story was a relative box office failure, stalling the development of any more standalone movies in the future. Calls to move away from the Skywalker saga became louder, hence the development of TV shows that initially focused on entirely new characters in unexplored periods of the Star Wars timeline, though the use of characters like Luke Skywalker and even Ahsoka Tano has perhaps made the shows feel too connected to the larger Star Wars narrative. Disney Star Wars faces a difficult task – continuing to build on a franchise that is so well-known and that audiences are so invested in, yet without relying too overtly on nostalgia. It’s a tricky balance to find. Working with creators, writers, and directors who have their own clear artistic visions certainly promises more individual and unique stories within the Star Wars galaxy, but Lucasfilm needs to be wary of placing too much emphasis on what came before.
One of the reasons Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker was much maligned during its original release is because it was too obvious that Star Wars wasn’t sure how Rey’s story was supposed to end, and thus they relied on a long-dead legacy character to fill a void that didn’t need filling. If Star Wars is going to have a successful movie future, it needs to be willing to take risks. Star Wars: The High Republic is perhaps the most prudent example that the Star Wars movies should follow, as it is a story that uses all the familiar aspects of Star Wars worldbuilding and applies them to create a narrative that is entirely new, exciting, and untethered to the weight of what came before. Disney could decide to look far beyond the Star Wars sequel trilogy into the future or go even further back than the High Republic to a time that is truly unexplored in Star Wars storytelling. There’s plenty of opportunity, but Disney and Star Wars need to be willing to take the risk.
What New Star Wars Movies Are Actually In The Works?
Patty Jenkins’ Rogue Squadron film is currently indefinitely delayed and has been taken off the release schedule. Additionally, Taika Waititi is set to write and direct a Star Wars film as well, and a recent update on the project stated he was in the process of writing the script. Rian Johnson’s previously announced Star Wars trilogy is also seemingly still in the works, as both he and Kathleen Kennedy have cited scheduling conflicts to be the only reason it hasn’t moved forward yet. Most recently announced was Lost creator and Star Trek Into Darkness co-writer Damon Lindelof’s new Star Wars movie, which has announced Ms. Marvel’s Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy to be directing, and is said to be set after the sequel trilogy. Marvel Studios’ Kevin Feige is also set to produce a Star Wars project and has brought on Michael Waldron to write the script.
As it stands, there are still plenty of Star Wars movie projects in the works, but it remains to be seen how many will truly make it to the finish line. December 2025 currently holds a release slot for an untitled Star Wars film, so it will be interesting to see which of these projects may snag that release date in the future. Hopefully, the movie side of Star Wars will find its footing soon so that a galaxy far, far away can once again be enjoyed on the big screen.