If Rogue One Succeeds, Lucasfilm May Make Star Wars Movies Forever


If Rogue One proves to be a valuable investment, Lucasfilm will probably try to make Star Wars movies for the rest of time.

As we’ve thoroughly discussed several times in the past, there’s a lot riding on Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. In addition to box office numbers, Rogue One’s success (or failure) will be a reflection of the Star Wars saga films as a whole. Obviously, these films are cemented in history forever. But The Force Awakens’ record-breaking numbers could be overshadowed by Rogue One’s box office flop. To be fair, the movie’s already tracking toward $130 million. Which is to say, all those TV spots are doing exactly what they’re supposed to be doing — generating buzz.

On the other hand, there’s still some confusion surrounding the film. There’s all that scary talk surrounding the reshoots, the confusion of whether it’s a sequel or prequel (trick question, because it’s neither) and, of course, people are really pissed off about seeing one more brunette lead.

Regardless, Disney wants the movie to succeed. And if it does, they plan to unleash an entire library of movies after that.

Now, we’ve heard Disney CEO Bob Iger speak a little on this before. Previously, he alluded to Lucasfilm President Kathy Kennedy’s plan to map out the universe. Which is great … if people are interested in the entire universe. Basically, Rogue One aims to prove whether standalones work or if Star Wars fans are only invested in the Skywalker story. If it’s the latter, what comes after the sequel trilogy, Episode VI, VIII, and IX? The “second sequel” trilogy?

According to Kennedy, “That’s a conversation going on right now, too. I have to honestly tell you, could we [do nothing but stand-alones]? Sure. But I don’t know. We are looking at all of that.”

To look “at all of that,” it sounds like Lucasfilm plans to deconstruct George Lucas’ timeless formula and rebuild the Star Wars universe from the ground up. So, iconic things like opening crawls could soon become a thing of the past. Again, Kennedy elaborates, “We feel that that is proprietary with the saga films. But how this evolves…? We haven’t fully decided, and [traditional Star Wars elements] may be pretty spare for this first one.”

After Rogue One releases in theaters and gets about of month or so to solidify its box office status, the Star Wars team gets to return to the drawing board:

"“We are planning to sit down in January, since we will have had The Force Awakens released, now Rogue One, and we’ve finished shooting Episode VIII. We have enough information where we can step back a little bit and say, What are we doing? What do we feel is exciting? And what are some of the things we want to explore?”"

Of course, this all circles back to Rogue One. Star Wars ties notwithstanding, the first standalone for any franchise is still a gamble. So, why Rogue One? Why now?

Kennedy explains: “Rogue One felt like a great beginning for because they know about the Death Star plans. They know the things that happened in A New Hope,” she says. “So it had those familiar elements, those anchor points, but it also was about a completely new set of characters. So it felt like a really good template for the kinds of things that we feel these movies can do.”

In the event that Rogue One doesn’t hold after opening weekend (Cher: “As if!”), then Lucasfilm looks to the Han Solo solo film as they reimagine the origin story of a beloved character. “It’s certainly exciting as a filmmaker, the notion that we can explore these stories that genuinely have a beginning, middle and an end, and don’t necessarily have to tie into something specific,” Kennedy says.

Honestly, I don’t care about anyone else’s story until I get an Ahsoka Tano solo film or an R5-D4 movie about its quest for redemption after accidentally misfiring on Tatooine.

Next: 2017 Independent Spirit Awards Nominations Inaugurate Oscar Season

Also, how do I get a job as a P.A. at Lucasfilm? Because I have some ideas, too.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story opens in theaters on Dec. 16, 2016.