No other details on the films are available, but we do know that they’ll be separate from the main Skywalker saga, as well as The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson’s new trilogy. The word “series” seems to indicate that these won’t be standalones like Rogue One or Solo either.
It’s anyone’s guess what a galaxy far, far away will look like after Episode IX. These films could forge a path forward into that new era. Or perhaps they’ll take a look back, thousands of year before Luke Skywalker was even born? Given Benioff and Weiss’ experience with world-building, might we finally see the re-canonization of the Old Republic that fans have been clamoring for? Darth Revan anyone?
Though the prospects are exciting, it’s all speculation at this point, and it’ll likely be quite a while until we learn more. That doesn’t mean there’s nothing to talk about though. Specifically, are the additions of even more new films, and of Benioff and Weiss themselves, good for Star Wars?
On one hand, Game of Thrones is one of the largest pop culture sensations since Star Wars itself. It makes sense that Kathleen Kennedy and the folks at Lucasfilm would want to try to replicate that success. As The Last Jedi proved, Disney isn’t afraid to take risks with the property, and is looking to grow the franchise beyond the original saga’s conclusion. Benioff and Weiss’ strong characters, compelling dialogue, elaborate action sequences, and ambitious vision might be just what Star Wars needs to stay fresh as it moves into the future.
On the other hand, there’s no guarantee that Benioff and Weiss’ style will translate well to Star Wars, or to the big screen. The most recent season of Game of Thrones was terribly paced and full of glaring plot holes, neither of which are easily forgiven by the Star Wars fanbase. And while Star Wars will need new voices to breathe life into the franchise, Benioff and Weiss’ vision is distinctly different from the one George Lucas first shared with the world in 1977. In 2018, Star Wars has certainly grown beyond Lucas, but if The Last Jedi’s critics have shown us anything, it’s that Star Wars fans like their movies to feel like Star Wars.
Benioff and Weiss’ judgement isn’t perfect either, evidenced by the announcement of their alt-history series Confederate last summer. The HBO drama would have imagined the United States had the South won the American Civil War and slavery continued to exist in the present day – a premise that ignited intense backlash online. With the announcement of their work on Star Wars, that series appears to be limbo. Perhaps rightfully so.
There’s also the concern of oversaturation. As the Marvel Cinematic Universe has proven, Disney will continue to crank out blockbusters as long as they continue to make money. Between the main saga, the standalone films, Johnson’s trilogy, and now this new series, we’re on track to have a dozen Star Wars films in less than a decade. But is more better? The last thing fans want to see is Star Wars’ legacy diluted by endless sequels.
Whether you’re on the hype-train or left behind at the station, Star Wars shows no signs of slowing down. More films are on the way, and they’re coming much faster than the White Walkers ever did. Here’s hoping Benioff and Weiss do for George Lucas’ brainchild what they did for George R.R. Martin’s.