What's Going On With The 'Star Wars' Spin-Off Movies? New Development Details Emerge

Last week Star Wars fans heard the worrisome but unsurprising news that any future installments in the Star Wars Story spin-off banner from Lucasfilm were on hold. The news came in the wake of the less than satisfying box office performance of Solo: A Star Wars Story, which was meant to kick off an entire franchise of movies following young Han Solo. However, Lucasfilm released a statement saying that report was "premature" and "speculative," and multiple Star Wars movies were still in development that hadn't been officially announced. So what's the deal here?

New details about future Star Wars spin-offs have emerged, and it sounds like the situation lies somewhere in between. A report indicates that Lucasfilm isn't slowing down development of any future Star Wars movies, but "they are licking their wounds." Let's dive into what that means, including the status of previously reported future Star Wars spin-off movies focusing on Obi-Wan Kenobi and Boba Fett.

The Hollywood Reporter has word on the status of future Star Wars spin-off movies with one insider saying, "It doesn't mean those spinoffs don't happen. It just means they're trying to figure out how to make, and market, them differently." No one really thought that Star Wars spin-offs were going to stop completely, but after the disappointing performance of Solo: A Star Wars Story, it's clear that they need to reassess how to approach these movies, from both a creative and financial standpoint.

The future of the Solo franchise looks bleak, despite laying the groundwork for a story that would have brought back the villain Darth Maul. There were also rumblings that a Lando Calrissian movie might get off the ground following Donald Glover's scene-stealing debut as the scoundrel from The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. It's likely that any plans Lucasfilm might have had for those story arcs to continue are being reconsidered as they take a breath following the performance of Solo. And the same can be said for other spin-offs focusing on legacy characters

Boba Fett May Be Reconfigured

Meanwhile, Han Solo's nemesis Boba Fett is also in a holding pattern because of the underperforming origin story. James Mangold was recently reported to direct the movie with a script he was co-writing with Simon Kinberg. Apparently Lucasfilm is thinking that if a movie about an iconic character like Han Solo didn't rake in a lot of money, then a movie about a lesser known character won't be a hit either. So the movie might be reconfigured to be smaller and less expensive.

The good news is the movie wouldn't come together until Mangold is done with his period racing drama Ford vs. Ferrari starring Matt Damon and Christian Bale. So Lucasfilm has plenty of time to figure out what to do with Boba Fett. Personally, I think the best decision would be abandoning a solo Boba Fett project altogether and merely making the character a supporting part of a different kind of Star Wars spin-off, perhaps one focusing on a band of bounty hunters all going after the same target. Imagine something like Smokin' Aces set in the Star Wars universe.

Obi-Wan Kenobi Up in the Air Too

Another Star Wars Story in the works was said to focus on Obi-Wan Kenobi in the time between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. Ewan McGregor was said to return as the Jedi in hiding, and Stephen Daldry (The Hours, The Reader) was reported to direct. But now it's not clear if the project is happening at all.

A recent rumor from Making Star Wars indicated that there was some kind of movie centering on Mos Eisley spaceport in development which had already reserved space for filming at Pinewood Studios in London. It was the canceling of that scheduled production time that seemed to confirm Star Wars spin-offs being put on hold. However, the Mos Eisley details could have easily been a cover for the Obi-Wan Kenobi movie, especially since that project hadn't officially been announced by Lucasfilm.

The Future of Star Wars

Honestly, it's good that Lucasfilm is taking the time to reconfigure these movies. Maybe they've realized that not every movie they make needs to be on the scale of the primary episodes in the Star Wars saga, both in scope and box office success. If Lucasfilm wants to keep making at least one new Star Wars movie a year, they need to manage expectations both for audiences and for themselves.  Hopefully this means we'll start getting Star Wars movies that try to stand out from the usual style of the franchise. Because there's plenty of success to be found in making genre movies set within the Star Wars universe.

Meanwhile, the only Star Wars movies we know for sure are on the way are the two new separate film series' being developed by The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson and the Game of Thrones duo D.B. Weiss and David Benioff. Each of the trilogies are different and neither has any connections to any of the established Star Wars trilogies. It promises a new direction for Star Wars while we wait to see how Lucasfilm handles the rest of the galaxy.