Recent months have seen the world of Star Wars diving into the previously unexplored era of The High Republic, a time around 200 years before the beginning of the Skywalker Saga. Over 2021, the era has been explored across different forms of media in comics and books, however, Disney+ will soon take The High Republic to live-action in The Acolyte.
Of Kathleen Kennedy's many Disney Investor Day announcements, none was more unexpected than The Acolyte. Little is known about the series yet but the mystery-thriller will be produced by Russian Doll creator Leslye Headland, exploring the emergency of the Darkside in the final days of The High Republic.
While The Acolyte won't premier until 2022 at the earliest, it's still one of the most intriguing properties on its way from the Disney+ Star Wars universe. In the meantime, a High Republic author and comic writer has offered his input on whether the series will impact plans for the publishing effort currently underway.
WILL THE ACOLYTE AFFECT COMICS AND BOOKS?
Author Cavan Scott, writer of the ongoing Star Wars: The High Republic comic series, has sat down with the ComicBook Nation podcast to discuss the current publishing effort in the pre-Skywalker Saga era, in which he is playing a key role.
When asked if the announcement of The Acolyte Disney+ series changed their plans, Scott revealed the novel and comic plans “predated that” by a “good number of years,” so didn't impact what they were working on.
The writer went on to suggest the interest generated in the High Republic era by the extended universe sub-series may have influenced the Disney+ creation, as Lucasfilm looked to “bring it together”:
“So what happened was people were getting excited about the High Republic as we were creating it, which was great to see, and there have been all these other plans as well but the great thing that Star Wars is so good at is taking the 'Things been worked on over here. This thing's been worked over on here, so let's bring it together.'”
Scott went on to explain that the era of The High Republic continues for an “awful long time,” so it allows the different “threads of Star Wars” to work together to explore the era in more detail than ever before:
"And I mean the High Republic as an era goes on for an awful long time, because, you know, it's that period of time before the fall of the Jedi. And so, it's been really exciting to sort of see other threads of Star Wars coming in as they've been developed as well and, and see us all working together to get to that for those final points. But yeah, it's going to be exciting isn't it?”
THE HIGH REPUBLIC COMES TO LIVE-ACTION
Of the many Star Wars Disney+ series' currently in-development, The Acolyte is the only one confirmed to take place outside the era of The Skywalker Saga. Additionally, this is the first time a live-action Star Wars property has explored an entirely different part of the canon, allowing Lucasfilm to produce something extremely different in tone and style.
Based on Cavan Scott's comments, it seems the Disney+ mystery-thriller won't connect to any of the extended universe events, but will instead slot nicely into its own chapter of the 200-year era. Given The Acolyte's premise of exploring the emergence of the Darkside towards the end of The High Republic, it's likely the series will reveal exactly how the era ends for the first time yet.
Previous reports have indicated Yoda may appear during the show, with no lead character yet assigned to the story, the younger days of the iconic green Jedi could make for a perfect premise to intrigue Star Wars fans into a new era.
The Acolyte is set to premiere exclusively on Disney+ at some point from 2022 onwards.