The Star Wars Universe Needs Original Spinoffs Too!
(Mild Spoilers Ahead)
Lucasfilm is now in the early stages of development on a standalone movie about Obi-Wan Kenobi. I feel like I should be more excited than I am. Obi-Wan is a phenomenal character and worthy of his own movie. Especially if (read: when) Ewan Mcgregor signs on.
My issue with the announcement deals more with the expanded Star Wars Universe as a whole. When Disney bought Lucasfilm and announced a new trilogy of core episodes alongside standalone anthology film, it was a literal dream come true.
Star Wars Episode VII The Force Awakens effectively reset and updated the franchise introducing new ideas along the way. Some would argue the film mirrored A New Hope too closely but I believe it was necessary to include a little familiarity. George Lucas himself once said Star Wars episodes should rhyme like stanzas in a poem.
The continuation of the Skywalker Saga was huge news but it was the anthology tales that interested me the most. What happens when a galaxy full of limitless possibilities meets a company with limitless resources?
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. A fantastic movie but still based cursed with prequel-itis. Before the credits rolled you knew Jyn Erso and her team would succeed and most likely not make it. Thankfully, the movie itself was incredibly entertaining and featured two huge moments that fixed some ‘wrongs’ in the universe.
1- The ‘Weakness’ in the Death Star was NOT a mistake or a coincidental oversight.
2- Darth Vader was given a bad ass sequence to remind us all that the Star Wars Universe gave us one of the best and most ruthless cinematic villains of all time.
The most important lesson from Rogue One was that the appetite for Star Wars movies is strong enough to sustain films with entirely new casts. Cameos aside, we got to know new people who reside in the galaxy and it was amazing.
Han Solo will follow up Star Wars: The Last Jedi in 2018. This is the part where I get a little worried. Director controvery aside, no matter what happens in the Han Solo film, we already know where the character ends up. Face to face with his son on Starkiller Base.
Now we’ll get an Obi-Wan movie. At the end of the day, I feel like a little kid who gets granted an unlimited ice cream wish and then cries when it’s not chocolate.
I’m excited about an solo Obi-Wan adventure but what about new ideas? I want to see different corners of the galaxy. I want to see new characters. I’d even accept live action adaptations of the cartoons featuring characters like Grand Admiral Thrawn. People and places we haven’t seen on the big screen before in one form or another.
No doubt there are several plans to introduce new franchises to the Star Wars Universe but, at this point, it will be years before the universe truly expands.
Let’s assume Obi-Wan will debut after Episode IX wraps up the Skywalker Saga. That’s 2020. Unless Disney grants Lucasfilm two films per year, it could be 4 years before we see a film that keeps the Star Wars brand but brings us some place new. (That doesn’t include the rumored Boba Fett movie which could push things even further.)
What do you think? Is there enough story to tell in the Han Solo and Obi-Wan films to cure the curse a prequel can bestow? Are you ready to explore something new? Is Disney ready to branch out and experiment with the enormous beast that is the Star Wars Universe?