Star Wars: Disney Cancelled Plans for Brutal Movie With R-Rated Elements

By Nathan Johnson Updated:
Boba Fett Star Wars Darth Vader

An R-rated movie centered around Boba Fett was apparently in the works at Disney and Lucasfilm before it was scrapped by the studio.

Boba Fett made his triumphant return to the Star Wars universe in Season 2 of Disney+'s The Mandalorian. However, to the disappointment of many fans, the character's own series, The Book of Boba Fett, was not well received, and many felt that it didn't do the character justice.

Rumors suggested that Fett would be receiving his own feature film in 2018 similar in style to that of Rogue One and Solo as one-off installments. It was also rumored that Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny director James Mangold would be at the helm of the movie.

However, Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy denied Mangold's involvement in November 2021.

A Near R-Rated Boba Fett Film Was in Development

Boba Fett
Star Wars

In an interview with Josh Horowitz on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, film director James Mangold, who will actually be directing an upcoming Star Wars movie, revealed that he was working on a Boba Fett feature film for Disney and Lucasfilm that was a bit more mature than other projects in the franchise.

Mangold revealed that he was, in fact, working on a Boba Fett film but that it didn't follow the typical family-friendly space adventure style of other Star Wars movies - instead, it was "borderline rated-R:"

"Well, at the point I was doing it, I was probably scaring the shit out of everyone. But I was probably making much more of a borderline rated-R kind of spaghetti Western… single-planet, spaghetti western."

It is important to note that Disney almost definitely would not have released any Star Wars film at that time with an R-rating, especially since it had been just over 5 years since they acquired the property.

If this movie would have released, it would have had a PG-13 rating, but it would still likely have contained some mature themes and R-rated elements.

The Logan director then talked about what happened to the movie and why Disney decided to scrap it, specifically mentioning "the Han Solo movie" and its box office failure:

"The world would never be able to embrace Baby Yoda if I had made that… So… Because it didn’t really belong in the world I was kind of envisioning, but it kind of just… in a moment of kind of corporate re-alignment after whatever happened with the Han Solo movie, they just suddenly decided they weren’t making pictures like that and I think the opportunities in streaming presented themselves."

Mangold also added that "it was a beautiful period" of time for him and even seemed to allude that he was greatly enjoying working on the project. However, he was "not sure" the movie would have ever seen the light of day, likely due to its almost R-rating:

"Yeah, I mean, it was a beautiful period. I was just listening to Ennio Morricone all day, all night, and typing away, but… I’m not sure it ever would have happened. I’m not sure sure that it was in anyone’s plans what I was thinking about."

It is important to note that Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy denied that Mangold had anything to do with a Boba Fett film back in 2021. She specifically stated that "Mangold never worked on a Boba Fett story."

Why Was Mangold's Boba Fett Film Almost Rated-R?

James Mangold has some experience in the field of making R-rated movies in franchises and genres where families are primarily the target audience.

For example, even though his 2017 movie, Logan, was under the Marvel superhero brand, it is generally regarded as one of the best comic book movies of all time.

Many fans will wonder what exactly Mangold had in mind for the movie that would have made it so much more mature than any other Star Wars project.

Seeing as how Boba Fett would have been the main character, and due to the fact that many have always viewed him as one of the most ruthless bounty hunters in the galaxy, it is safe to assume that the movie would have had its fair share of violence.

Mangold described it as a "spaghetti western," so it can be assumed that its themes and style would be on the darker, grittier side, similar to some popular Western movies throughout history such as Tombstone and The Hateful Eight.

Seeing as how Star Wars has never had a film in the R-rated category, it is safe to say that Disney would have released this movie with a PG-13 rating, and would have likely demanded Mangold make cuts to the film to make sure it didn't actually crossover into rated-R territory.

However, that's not to say that it wouldn't have still been on the border of being R-rated, and it would have likely been the most adult movie in the galaxy far, far away.

- About The Author: Nathan Johnson
Nathan is a writer at The Direct where he covers Star Wars, the MCU, and DC news. He joined The Direct in April 2021 and currently writes news and feature articles about all three brands mentioned above, but his main specialty is his knowledge about anything and everything Star Wars.