It has been nearly three years since a Star Wars movie landed in theaters (though some would argue the Siege of Mandalore Clone Wars arc from 2020 sort of counted). That’s why fans were thrilled to learn about upcoming projects like Patty Jenkins’ Rogue Squadron and Taika Waititi’s untitled Star Wars film on Disney Investor Day 2020.
Updates since then have been vague and unpredictable, however. Delays have led to rumors that Rogue Squadron may no longer be happening (it still is). But we’ve heard even less about Taika’s movie. According to Screen Rant, he’s still writing it.
“I don’t know. I’m still writing. I’m still coming up with the ideas and storylining it and just wanted to make sure that it feels like a Star Wars film,” he told the outlet while promoting Lightyear last week. “I could just say, ‘Oh yeah, we’ll just write any old thing and set in space and then put Star Wars on the front.’ But it wouldn’t be a Star Wars film without certain elements and a certain treatment, so I’ve just got to make sure that it stays within that wheelhouse.”
At Star Wars Celebration Anaheim 2022, Kathleen Kennedy commented that Taika’s film would now come out before Rogue Squadron and that 2023 was the ideal release year for it. But with Taika taking his time crafting a high-quality story — halfway into 2022 — it doesn’t seem realistic that an entire film could be ready for audiences next December.
But really, there’s nothing wrong with that. Audiences have waited much longer than this between Star Wars movies in the past; There was a 16-year gap between the original and prequel trilogies, and a decade between the prequel and sequel trilogies.
Now that trilogies seem to be lower on the priority list for now, stand-alone movies can — and perhaps should — be given the time to develop into something their creators can truly be happy with.
Plus, the difference between a gap in Star Wars film releases now compared to past hiatuses is that then, there wasn’t much supplementary material coming out that was new. Now, we’re halfway through a year that’s expected to air episodes of Star Wars TV from at least four different shows, not including the Tales of the Jedi shorts for forthcoming LEGO special.
We may be short on new movies now. But we’re not starving for content. This can and should give filmmakers permission to take their time making the best Star Wars movies they can. Marvel figured out how to release multiple movies a year, year after year, without sacrificing quality. Star Wars is still figuring out how to tell their best stories at the right release rate. And that’s OK.
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