The main focus of Lucasfilm in the next few years is to expand the Star Wars franchise on Disney+, but it was revealed during the Disney Investor Day event that movies will still be a priority for the galaxy far, far away. Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi will jump from the MCU to Star Wars to direct a movie for Lucasfilm's monumental franchise, but not much is known about the actual project.
On top of that, three more movies were already announced by Lucasfilm, and those projects will be released in 2023, 2025, and 2027 respectively. As expected, details about those films are still being kept under wraps, but it's a safe bet that it will reinvent Star Wars like never before.
And now, one of the aforementioned films has been announced along with an exciting and fresh new addition to the growing Star Wars community.
Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy officially announced that Wonder Woman 1984 director Patty Jenkins will direct the next Star Wars film entitled Rogue Squadron. The movie eyes a Christmas 2023 release date.
Along with the reveal, Jenkins took to social media to share a video about her upcoming Star Wars film. In the video, the veteran director expressed her excitement about making the movie, admitting that it has been her "lifelong dream as a filmmaker to one day make a great fighter pilot film:"
“It’s been a lifelong dream as a filmmaker to one day make a great fighter pilot film. As the daughter of a great fighter pilot myself, some of the best memories of my life are of seeing my father’s squadron take off in their F4s every morning, and hearing and feeling the awe-inspiring power and grace. When he passed away in service to this country it ignited a burning desire to one day channel all of those emotions into one great film. When the perfect story arrived in combination with another true love of mine, the incomparable world of Star Wars, I knew I’d finally found my next film. I’m extremely honored and excited to take it on, and grateful to Lucasfilm, Disney, and the fans for extending that thrill to me.”
In a separate release from Lucasfilm, Kennedy explained the reason why she chose Jenkins to direct Rogue Squadron by pointing out that the director is a "visionary who knows how to strike the balance between action and heart:"
“Patty has established herself as one of the top directors working in the film industry today. She’s a visionary who knows how to strike the balance between action and heart, and I can’t wait to see what she does in the Star Wars galaxy.”
Lucasfilm also teased more details about the film, confirming that the story "will introduce a new generation of starfighter pilots:"
The story will introduce a new generation of starfighter pilots as they earn their wings and risk their lives in a boundary-pushing, high-speed thrill-ride, and move the saga into the future era of the galaxy.
Update: In a tweet, Borys Kit of The Hollywood Reporter shared that Rogue Squadron will be released on December 22, 2023.
And ROGUE SQUADRON, which looks like it will be Disney's first theatrical #StarWars movie since 2019's RISE OF SKYWALKER, will be released 12/22/23.— Borys Kit (@Borys_Kit) December 11, 2020
WHAT THIS MEANS
As it is, the addition of Patty Jenkins to the Star Wars franchise is a win already. Jenkins' excitement towards the project is clearly shown in the teaser video, and it will be exciting to see how she will expand an unexplored corner of Star Wars even further.
Rogue Squadron has an interesting premise, but not much is known when the story will be set in the decade-spanning timeline of Star Wars. Given that the official release uses words such as "new" and "future," there's a good chance that it will be set after the events of The Rise of Skywalker, ultimately ushering in a new era of stories for fans.
This is pure speculation at this point, but if that ever happens, it's possible that Oscar Isaac's Poe Dameron could return for a cameo role. Dameron is perhaps the best pilot in the post-Skywalker Saga, and it would make sense for the character to be involved.
On the flip side, it's also likely that the film will be set in the High Republic era, potentially adding more layers to the Golden Age of the Jedi. However, this might seem unlikely due to Rogue Squadron's more grounded approach.
Whatever the case, Rogue Squadron will introduce a plethora of new characters, and it will be exciting to see how it will "move the saga" even further down the line.