For the first time in 15 years, it's pencils down for the Writers Guild of America (WGA); and amidst movie & television scribes' ongoing strike for fair pay and better working conditions, some of Lucasfilm's Star Wars Disney+ projects are beginning to feel the impact.
New reports claim certain Star Wars series may face delays or production halts while others are likely to remain on track.
The following is a look at how the WGA strikes could impact Lucasfilm's upcoming Star Wars projects and their release dates.
Star Wars Disney+ Shows Facing Delays
Andor Season 2
While the anticipated second (and final season) of this Rogue One prequel was expected to debut in August 2024, that may no longer be the case.
Andor showrunner Tony Gilroy publically joined the strike shortly after it began in early May, even though cameras are still rolling.
But in light of Marvel Studios' Wonder Man shutting down, it's possible that filming on Andor may halt as well, delaying the season's Disney+ debut.
The Mandalorian Season 4
The latest Star Wars project facing delays is Season 4 of The Mandalorian.
Currently, The Mandalorian Season 4 is projected to drop in early 2025 with filming expected to begin in September.
However, new reports claim production will likely be pushed back because, even though Jon Favreau has already written the season scripts, the WGA strike means no on-set writers. There's also the possibility that crew members and other industry creatives are unwilling to cross picket lines.
Star Wars: The Bad Batch Season 3
While nearly two years separated Season 1 and Season 2 of Star Wars: The Bad Batch animated series, that wasn't supposed to be the case for Season 3.
Instead, The Bad Batch's third season was aiming for a release next year; and while that still could happen, it's likely to be later in 2024 than previously expected as evidence points toward the show's team supporting the writers' strike, including head writer and executive producer, Jennifer Corbett.
Tales of the Jedi
At Star Wars Celebration 2023, Dave Filoni announced a second season of Tales of the Jedi, an animated anthology series that first premiered in 2022.
Its fuzzy 2024 release window now faces uncertainty; and like The Bad Batch, its head writer, Charles Murray, is also participating in the strike.
Star Wars Visions Season 3
While a third season of Star Wars Visions has yet to be officially confirmed, many fans fully expected a Season 3 and possibly a quicker turnaround than prior seasons.
Whether the strike could affect these odds is also unknown, especially since Visions' production takes place internationally. However, international guilds/unions may fall in line with the WGA and cease work in support of the strike, leading to a delay.
Star Wars Disney+ Shows Avoiding Delays
Of all the Star Wars projects on Lucasfilm's slate, Ahsoka appears to be the safest in terms of delays.
With the Rosario Dawson-led series releasing on Disney+ in August, the show is practically done and therefore unaffected by production halts or the absence of on-set writers.
Jon Watts' Skeleton Crew, an Amblin-esque coming-of-age Star Wars series, has been one of Lucasfilm's more mysterious projects, and so has its 2023 release date.
A series star recently claimed that Skeleton Crew premieres in November or December; and since filming has already wrapped, it's likely to keep that late 2023 window.
Unlike Ahsoka and Skeleton Crew, The Acolyte isn't expected to drop until 2024.
Even though most 2024 Star Wars series are in danger of being pushed back, The Acolyte is within its final days of filming, meaning there's less need for on-set rewrites or a halt in production.
Therefore, for now, Star Wars' Disney+ slate is likely to keep to its release schedule until after The Acolyte.
From Star Wars to Studio Wars?
Given the number of delays studios, creatives, and audiences experienced during the pandemic, no one is eager to relive a repeat saga of reschedules and production halts.
However, the fact that streaming is a contributing factor to the WGA strike, and streaming series having to halt without writers, only proves the point writers are trying to make.
It's important to realize that the impact of the strike is only just beginning to be felt.
If it continues, the real question is how long studios will hold out, especially if 2024 projects continue to get pushed back, and what will the Star Wars slate look like on the other side?