For the first time in Lucasfilm’s run on Disney+, the Star Wars franchise is set to take a journey back longer ago than fans have ever seen. This will come with next year’s The Acolyte, which will take the story back a century prior to the events of 1999’s Episode I: The Phantom Menace, focusing on the Dark Side’s mysterious and hidden rise to power.
Not too much is known about the plot for the High Republic show, although Lucasfilm is bringing some of the top industry professionals on board to bring the story to life. Leading the way in this effort will reportedly be director Kate Herron, who held the same position with Marvel Studios on Loki Season 1 and delivered excellent results for fans and critics alike.
On the acting front, Amandla Stenberg will play The Acolyte’s leading role after being best known for her credits in The Hunger Games and The Hate U Give, amongst other big-name projects. Now, as Lucasfilm moves closer to beginning production, Stenberg could be getting her first co-star to bring a new character to life on the small screen.
The Acolyte Gains New Actor & Production Update
Deadline revealed that Jodie Turner-Smith is in final talks to play an undisclosed role in Disney and Lucasfilm's new High Republic-set Star Wars series, The Acolyte. Turner-Smith would become the show's second main cast member after Amandla Stenberg should she sign on.
Additionally, the outlet reported that filming is set to begin in late fall in London.
The Acolyte Nearly Ready to Get Underway
Having played the leading role in Queen & Slim alongside horror directing star and Black Panther actor Daniel Kaluuya, Turner-Smith's resume certainly gives her the experience that would serve her well should she join The Acolyte. Even with no signs pointing to her potential role, seeing her appear alongside a young star in Amandla Stenberg could make for an exciting duo as they explore this uncharted era of Star Wars history.
With some time still remaining until production begins, Lucasfilm should be getting close to making a decision on Turner-Smith's inclusion in the show, with her role likely not coming to light for the foreseeable future. But thankfully, this is only part of the exciting news from this development thanks to filming being confirmed for this fall.
Noting that timing, shooting should begin sometime between the end of October and early December, with the sets for the show currently being built in the United Kingdom. Now, the wait continues for more details on the cast and the specific story beats, although the casting and filming update is some of the most concrete news surrounding this series yet.
The Acolyte is expected to premiere on Disney+ sometime in 2023, with filming kicking off in late fall this year.