Star Wars fans, rejoice. It seems that the iconic franchise will continue well beyond Episode IX, which is expected to be released in 2019.
While the future of Star Wars beyond the end of its third trilogy remains unclear, fans will appreciate the fact that there will definitely be something to look forward to after Episode IX.
Over A Decade Of 'Star Wars' Stories After 'Episode IX'
Disney CEO Bob Iger, as reported by The Hollywood Reporter, revealed to press that the studio is already talking about what would happen to the Star Wars franchise after its third trilogy ends in 2019 with the release of Episode IX.
"About what could be another decade-and-a-half of Star Wars stories," Iger said, a statement that has stirred the franchise's fans into a frenzy.
When Disney acquired Lucasfilm in 2012, it subsequently announced that it would be producing a new Star Wars trilogy, which started with the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens in 2015. Disney also said that it will be looking into launching new movies on top of the trilogy, which turned out to be three stand-alone films that kicked off with Rogue One: A Star Wars Story last year.
Disney is now apparently looking beyond the current trilogy and the three stand-alone titles, the second one of which would feature the early days of the legendary Han Solo.
It is unclear if Iger means that there will be additional trilogies that will be released after Episode IX, if future movies will all be stand-alone stories such as Rogue One, or if there will be entirely new franchises set within the Star Wars universe. Whatever the case may be, Star Wars lore has countless stories that Disney can tap into, with the franchise proving that fans will accept new lead characters as they have with Rey and Kylo Ren in The Force Awakens.
If Iger's statement is accurate, it would mean that Star Wars movies are being planned well into the early to mid-2030s, a strategy that Disney had found success with for Marvel and Pixar.
Other 'Star Wars' Tidbits
In his interview with the press, Iger revealed several other tidbits about the future of the Star Wars franchise.
According to Iger, the untimely death of Carrie Fisher, who plays the role of Princess Leia, will not cause any changes to Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Fisher's performance will remain in Episode VIII, with Iger confirming that there will be no usage of digital recreation technologies as seen, and criticized, in Rogue One.
Iger also released new details regarding the upcoming Han Solo movie, stating that the film will follow the smuggler's adventures when he was 18 to 24 years old, including how he met his faithful companion Chewbacca and how he acquired the Millennium Falcon. In addition, the film will reveal how Han Solo got his name.
Earlier this month, Disney shareholders were given an exclusive preview of The Last Jedi through a clip that showed what immediately happened after the end of The Force Awakens. The footage showed Luke Skywalker, played by Mark Hamill, ask "Who are you?" as Rey hands over his lightsaber.