If every modern-day studio is chasing its own Marvel-style universe, it seemed only logical that the also-Disney-owned Star Wars franchise would go in the same direction. After all, there are virtually endless stories to tell throughout the galaxy, from those familiar to casual fans to those that only a devotee of the now-eradicated Extended Universe could possibly know about. Or so it seemed.
And then, the trouble began. Rogue One was a hit, but only after extensive reshoots and rumors of substantial turmoil behind the scenes. This year’s Solo was similarly plagued by rumors of major production issues, rumors confirmed when original directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller were replaced by Ron Howard well into the film’s production. The future of the franchise was further beset by questions of audience burnout when Solo made an underwhelming $103 million debut on a major American holiday weekend, Presently, near the end of its theatrical run, Solo is the lowest-grossing live-action theatrical Star Wars release by a margin of more than $100 million.
Now, rumors suggest that any future Star Wars standalones may be in major question. Collider reports that “Sources with knowledge of the situation tell Collider that Lucasfilm has decided to put plans for more A Star Wars Story spinoff movies on hold, instead opting to focus their attention on Star Wars: Episode IX and what the next trilogy of Star Wars films will be after that film. Sources tell us that the previously rumored Obi-Wan movie was in active development, but those who were working on the film are no longer involved.”
This remains speculative for the time being, but if confirmed true, it would be a major departure from Disney and Lucasfilm’s previous strategy of one Star Wars installment for every calendar year. Among others, it would spell doom for James Mangold’s planned standalone Boba Fett movie, or at least production turnaround, which in Hollywood parlance is often doom in its own way. We’ll be following this story as it further develops.