Star Wars fans are feeling quite a bit like Director Krennic at the moment, with a slight adjustment:
"We are on the verge of greatness. We are this close."
Two months, more or less. The trailer for The Book of Boba Fett has finally arrived, and with it, the countdown begins to the series' debut on December 29. Following the culmination of the crime lord's story, which is said to be nine episodes, an unparalleled year of Star Wars content is on the table for 2022.
Rumors indicate that the highly anticipated Obi-Wan Kenobi is on track for a May release, possibly even Star Wars Day - the perfect occasion for the return of Ewan McGregor's Jedi Master. Star Wars: Andor will also be dropping a 12-episode first season, though at one point in the year remains unknown. The Bad Batch Season 2 is also coming, as well as ILM and Lucasfilm Animation's joint project A Droid Story. To finish off the year (as far as confirmed things go), The Mandalorian Season 3 should be on track for a late release.
But 2022 won't only be busy in terms of dropping projects. Lucasfilm has a great deal on its plate for the production side of things to keep the new content rolling out seamlessly.
The aforementioned The Mandalorian Season 3 began filming in September and is now in full swing, likely wrapping at some point in the early months of 2022. Word in the local watering hole is that Rosario Dawson will be returning to play Ahsoka Tano sooner than expected, as she's scheduled to begin filming in December for what could either be Ahsoka or an appearance in The Mandalorian. Later in the year, it will be time for Patty Jenkins' Rogue Squadron film to roll cameras as well.
A series that's flown under the radar is Leslye Headland's The Acolyte. Perhaps this is the result of the series being disconnected from all other projects in the timeline, but the show presents an intriguing premise as fans follow the exploits of a young dark side user. Early reports indicated that the show would begin filming in February 2022, but a new rumor suggests that production has been pushed back.
The Acolyte Production Delayed to Summer 2022
The Illuminerdi has reported that production for Leslye Headland's The Acolyte has been pushed to early Summer 2022, as opposed to the previously rumored February timeframe. Additionally, the outlet shared that the series' working title will be 'Paradox,' and the lead will be a woman of color in her late teens to early twenties currently known as "Aura," which may be a code name.
Into the Maelstrom of Production
If the latest rumor is true, there's nothing shocking about a slight delay for The Acolyte's production.
Leslye Headland has been in the process of mapping out the series - literally - and writing episodes for quite some time. By now, the story and characters should be set, and casting is likely underway, if not completed.
All indicators point to this move being based on scheduling, more than anything. With The Mandalorian Season 3 and Ahsoka rolling cameras in early 2022, The Acolyte may be a bit too much to handle within the same time frame. While it could also be argued that Rogue Squadron and Lando might also begin filming in the Summer, the nature of the projects are much different and start dates have yet to be revealed.
Another potential factor is that The Acolyte will be filming in London, as opposed to LA where many of the new series have been produced. The only other Star Wars to film overseas up to this point has been Andor, and the delay could be as simple as finding a window where the two shows' productions won't overlap, as the Rebel spy thriller is intended to have multiple seasons.
The working title for The Acolyte is most definitely a production code name. Whether Paradox has any sort of significance is up in the air, but recent Star Wars precedent suggests it won't have any bearing on the plot. The code name for The Last Jedi was Space Bear, which certainly was not about space bears in any manner, and The Mandalorian has taken up Huckleberry as its cover... a series that does not pertain to huckles or berries.
Word of the lead character's name being "Aura" is intriguing, but is also likely to be a codename. While The Acolyte takes place during the tail-end of the High Republic era, and it's doubtful that any familiar faces will appear, Star Wars projects have always retained a strong sense of secrecy, and this series will be no exception. Much like "Kira" was to Rey as "Uber" was to Supreme Leader Snoke, "Aura" is presumably covering the true identity of The Acolyte's central character.
While it's still a ways off, The Acolyte sounds like a promising addition to the growing Star Wars catalog. Given the delay in production, what once could've been an early 2023 release now appears to be something more in line that Summer or Fall. There may well be updates during Disney Plus Day on November 12 and Star Wars Celebration next May prior to the series' shoot that provide a clearer picture, and the onslaught of shows on the horizon should easily hold eager fans over until the time for the dark side comes.
The Acolyte will begin production in 2022.