The next Star Wars movies are rumored to take place 400 years before the Skywalker saga
The Rise of Skywalker has been in theaters for only less than a month. But the Star Wars leakers are still working overtime to find out what's next for the Galaxy Far, Far Away. The latest news out of the Star Wars Leaks Reddit community is something called "Project Luminous."
First announced at the Lucasfilm Publishing Panel at New York Comic Con in October 2019, "Luminous" was revealed to be drawing together five all-star Star Wars authors for a project that would release in 2020. Aside from the author names, the only info fans were given about the mysterious project was a slide that said, "The Force is what gives a Jedi his power. It's an energy field created by all living things...Until...Project Luminous."
According to Jason Ward, the trusted Star Wars leaker behind the Making Star Wars podcast, Project Luminous isn't just a novel or series of comic books. And it's not a video game either. Ward says it's a major multimedia event that will span films, games, comics, and books. Unlike the Skywalker saga, Luminous won't be limited to the film trilogy format–it will take the Marvel approach from which Disney has seen so much success already. And though it may share a very beloved character with the Skywalker films, this interconnected story is going to be set way before the time of Luke Skywalker. If what Ward says is true, the next Star Wars film series will predate The Phantom Menace by as much as 400 years. "A Long Time Ago" indeed.
Ward says on MakingStarWars.net that the new (old) era of Star Wars is being referred to as the "High Republic." He thinks this is in reference to the time of the "Old Republic" when the Jedi were in power alongside their democratic Republic allies. The leak states that the story will follow a group of superhero-like Jedi exploring the "Unknown Regions." It's a time long before anyone had even heard of The Death Star or The Empire. But although the fascist dictatorship of Darth Sidious would not be instated for a few centuries, this time of the High Republic will, according to Ward, include Sith. As fans of the franchise know, the Dark Side of the Force users have been around for as long as the Jedi have.
Making Star Wars drops the name "Darth Bane" and mentions the Sith "Rule of Two" in their Project Luminous post. While none of this has been confirmed by Disney, it's fascinating to bring up the ol' Rule of Two thing today, after Palpatine talked so much about the so called "Force Dyad" between Rey and Ben Skywalker in Rise of Skywalker.
The Dyad has been one of the most criticized parts of Episode IX. The idea of a bond in the force being so strong that it creates a sort of power vacuum seemed to come out of nowhere in the latest film. But for Star Wars fans, the number two is by no means unimportant for the series. Introduced in George Lucas's lore-heavy prequels, the Dark Side has known to be obsessed with twos.
There's Darth Maul and Darth Sidious. Then Count Dooku (Darth Tyrannous) and Darth Sidious. And finally, the final and most significant "dyad" of Darth Vader and Darth Sidious. It seems only natural that a new series of films would unpack the origins of this bond between two wielders of the force.
Sure, 400 years is a long time. But there's still probably one character from the original Star Wars trilogy that you might expect to appear in a series that puts an emphasis on old. Yoda has actually shown up in all three eras of Star Wars, making cameos in the animated tie-in series, and even playing a big part in The Mandalorian (though we don't know for sure how that version of Yoda is related to the one we've seen before). Ward reports that the little green guy will also show up in the High Republic era. But not as his older self. And not as a Baby, either. That's right. We may finally get to see Young Adult Yoda. It's about time (I guess).
We can't say for sure if anything in this Making Star Wars post is true. Star Wars leakers have been known to take huge creative leaps in their so-called "reliable" assessments of confidential news. But none can deny that Disney is in desperate need of some new ideas for their famous Lucasfilm franchise. While Episode IX and The Mandalorian were both major successes (despite mediocre reviews), Star Wars has been tip-toeing around the fact that, for better or for worse, the past is dead. There are no more Skywalkers. They can't rest on the laurels of Darth Vader anymore. And to make things more complicated, their standalone films Rogue One and Solo were by no means new steps forward for the franchise. They need something new. The High Republic (or Project Luminous), with its inherent connection to beloved Star Wars series like Knight of the Old Republic, could be the breath of fresh air that the Galaxy Far, Far Away has been waiting for. It's not clear as to whether this new series could have any relation to the now-defunct project that D.B. Weiss and David Benioff were working on for Disney, but it certainly sounds like it could bear some resemblances to Game of Thrones. Maybe for the future of Star Wars, going deep into the past is a good thing.