Word on the Star Wars film front has been extremely quiet. While not completely unusual for Lucasfilm, the radio silence has made many question when fans will once again be sitting down with popcorn to enjoy a new galaxy-altering flick on the silver screen. The last Star Wars movie to release in theaters was the controversial conclusion to the sequel trilogy, The Rise of Skywalker, which was followed by an intentional hiatus to allow for more focus on Disney+ series.
At the moment, there are only three Star Wars films officially on Disney's release slate, set for Christmas releases in 2023, 2025, and 2027. The first project due up is Patty Jenkins' Rogue Squadron, but a wave of reports last Fall indicated that the movie is in trouble. Rumors circulating through the trades pointed to scheduling conflicts for Jenkins - which have seemingly been cleared up - and issues with the script as causes for an impending delay.
Also, on the horizon are Taika Waititi's film, which is heavily speculated to fill the 2025 slot, and the Kevin Feige-produced picture, with Michael Waldron attached as writer. The latter is a long way out, as the creative team has yet to break ground, and rumors of Eternals director Chloe Zhao helming the project have proven inaccurate. Waititi and co-writer Krysty Wilson-Cairnes have been hard at work on crafting the director's story for over a year, with his full focus expected to fall on Star Wars following the release of Thor: Love and Thunder.
Lucasfilm is always kicking the tires on new ideas, and after the reception to the recent wave of Star Wars films to theaters, the company needs a box office win. There have been several rumors in recent months pointing to tales that may be told in various time periods, with little proof to back them up. However, a new report suggests one of the industry's top creative minds is coming to the franchise, and with him, a new movie.
Damon Lindelof to Write New Star Wars Film
The Ankler reported that screenwriter Damon Lindelof has been hired by Lucasfilm to write a new Star Wars movie. Lindelof, known for writing drama series Lost and creating the award-winning HBO series Watchmen, will be tackling an unknown feature film in the galaxy far, far away.
This report comes from industry insider Jeff Sneider, who previously wrote for Variety and Collider.
What Project is Lindelof Working On?
There are a few options at play, but the Star Wars feature film situation is complicated by the current release slate Disney has. It's largely been proven that December releases for Star Wars work, as four of the new films to hit in that month made over $1 billion at the box office. Solo, by contrast, was released in May 2018 and failed spectacularly. With four Avatar films taking up the holiday slots between Star Wars flicks, a new movie from Lindelof would seemingly be a long way off.
With this in mind, it's worth considering the possibility that Disney shakes up the release slate entirely. While Rogue Squadron's 2023 debut is looking less and less likely, Lucasfilm may have enough projects in development to return to annual releases. Should this be the case, the Avatar franchise might be bumped to May, allowing for Star Wars movies like Lindelof's to release sooner than 2027.
In addition to the previously noted projects, there's also the Rian Johnson trilogy that was announced in late 2017. It will have been a decade since the project was announced if the current release pattern is followed, though there's been doubt cast on if Johnson's story will ever see the light of day. When word of Rogue Squadron's delay broke, subsequent reports of an Old Republic-era movie filling the void began to hit, which may be something Lindelof would be attached to.
It's also possible that Lindelof is coming in to clean up Rogue Squadron's script, perhaps in a Hail Mary effort by Lucasfilm to see the film released on time. No official word has been shared by Lucasfilm regarding the status of Jenkins or her film, so there's always the chance that things are running smoother than reported and the movie remains on schedule.
Whatever Lucasfilm and Lindelof have up their sleeves will likely be announced sooner than later. With Star Wars Celebration coming in late May, there's a good chance Lucasfilm will take the opportunity to update fans on the future of the franchise's theatrical releases. If such a panel is scheduled, Lindelof will certainly be a participant, and the nature of his Star Wars movie will be revealed.