Lucasfilm are due to sit down this week (today in fact) to start discussions about where to take Star Wars beyond Episode IX and the Han Solo standalone movie. They will also be discussing how best to handle the recent loss of Princess Leia super star, Carrie Fisher...
So the initial plan was for the creatives behind the latest wave of Star Wars movies to come together and plan how to move forward with the franchise in the wake of Rogue One's box office success. But the passing of Carrie Fisher on 27th December will Casta long shadow over these talks.
There is a good chance that there will be no future saga movies beyond the trilogy capping Episode IX, which is being directed by Jurassic World's Colin Trevorrow, and due to hit theatres in 2019. One can imagine Lucasfilm being emboldened by the success of the first Star Wars standalone movie, Rogue One. With close to $1b in the bank after just 3 and a half weeks, it would seem that A Star Wars Story movies, which could be set at any period of time in the Star Wars universe, might be a viable alternative to following the Skywalker Saga into another trilogy.
The next Star Wars Story film will follow Han Solo and Lando Calrissian played by Alden Ehrenreich and Donald Glover as they were in the years leading up to the events of 1977's Star Wars. Could this movie become a trilogy? Might this film spin off into a Lando movie, giving Donald Glover his own series of films set in the GFFA? What about beyond Han Solo? Initial plans suggested Boba Fett would get his own film, but with that now occupying the back burner, are Lucafilm bold enough to develop projects that follow new characters? Maybe TV's Star Wars Rebels' crew or Doctor Aphra from the comic book series?
One thing is for sure, the discussions of Rogue One's success with be overshadowed by the choices that need to be made in the wake of losing Carrie Fisher. With General Leia's scenes in the can so to speak, will the producers decide to recut Episode VIII and give Leia her final moments in this year's Star Wars movie, or will they "lock print" on VIII and choose to find alternate ways to bring Leia to life in Episode IX? Personally I would rather see Leia leave the franchise in VIII and bid a fond farewell to Carrie Fisher this year. Even if the filmmakers need to adopt the creative measures used to such great effect in Rogue One. The last thing I want is to see a CGI Leia throughout IX, or, heaven forbid, have the character recast.
Whatever is going to happen, those choice start today. It is not a process I would want to be a part of, and it goes without saying that we wish all of those involved the very best of luck. We know you will make the right choice.
Thank you for reading,