Star Wars Bits: J.W. Rinzler, The Bad Batch, Terrifying Tales, Galactic Starcruiser, And More!

In this edition of Star Wars Bits:

  • Star Wars Author J.W. Rinzler Passes Away
  • Disney+ Announces Season 2 of Star Wars: The Bad Batch
  • LEGO Star Wars Terrifying Tales Premieres October 1
  • Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser Details
  • And More!

Star Wars Author J.W. Rinzler Passes Away

J.W. Rinzler, author of The Making of Star Wars: The Definitive Story Behind the Original Film (2007), The Making of The Empire Strikes Back (2010), and The Making of Return of the Jedi (2013), as well as The Complete Making of Indiana Jones (2008), The Making of Alien (2019) and The Making of Aliens (2020), passed away on July 28 after an 11-month battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 58.

You can read his obituary at Berkleyside. In addition, StarWars.com has an excellent tribute to the author with comments by George Lucas, who Rinzler worked closely with for 15 years:

"With his kind and contemplative nature, you could see a glint in his eye, the wheels turning when he had a new idea and a quiet fervor with which he sought out ever more detail for the books he wrote and edited. The works he left behind are touchstones to times and places we can each remember and appreciate in our own way."

Rinzler's final book, Howard Kazanjian: A Producer's Life — From Hitchcock and Peckinpah to Spielberg and Lucas, 50 Years of Collaboration, is available now. To honor Rinzler, at his family's request, please donate to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.

Fans of the Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and Alien franchises are forever in Rinzler's debt for his incredible work in documenting the creation of these iconic, beloved films. Our hearts go out to his family and friends during this difficult time.

Disney+ Announces Season 2 of Star Wars: The Bad Batch

Thursday, Disney+ announced the second season of Star Wars: The Bad Batch, which will launch in 2022.

"Fans have enthusiastically embraced the action and drama of Star Wars: The Bad Batch, and we are excited to see the Star Wars animated universe continue to expand on Disney+," said Michael Paull, president of Disney+ and ESPN+. "As the dedicated streaming home for the Star Wars franchise, we can't wait for the second season of this fan-favorite animated series."

LEGO Star Wars Terrifying Tales Premieres October 1

Just in time for Halloween, LEGO Star Wars Terrifying Tales premieres on Disney+ October 1. The all-new animated special, which takes place after the events of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, is described as "a seasonal celebration of the villainous dark side of the Star Wars galaxy." Here's the synopsis:

"Poe Dameron and BB-8 must make an emergency landing on the volcanic planet Mustafar where they meet the greedy and conniving Graballa the Hutt. The crime boss has purchased Darth Vader's castle and is renovating it into the galaxy's first all-inclusive Sith-inspired luxury hotel. While waiting for his X-Wing to be repaired, Poe, BB-8, Graballa, and Dean (a plucky and courageous young boy who works as Graballa's mechanic) venture deep into the mysterious castle with Vader's loyal servant, Vaneé. Along the way, Vaneé shares three creepy stories linked to ancient artifacts and iconic villains from across all eras of Star Wars."

The voice cast includes Jake Green as Poe Dameron; Raphael Alejandro as Dean; Dana Snyder as Graballa the Hutt; Tony Hale as Vaneé; Christian Slater as Ren; Trevor Devall as Emperor Palpatine; and Mary Elizabeth McGlynn as NI-L8. For more information, including a look at the poster, check out StarWars.com.

Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser Details

Scheduled to open at Walt Disney World in 2022, Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser offers an immersive two-night experience where you're the hero of your own Star Wars story. Guests will arrive at a terminal where they'll check-in and board a launch pod that takes them to the Halcyon, a luxurious interstellar cruise ship. Once aboard, guests begin their respective adventures, which can include sabacc lessons, lightsaber training, dining in the Crown of Corellia Dining Room, and more.

Star Wars characters, including aliens and droids, appear throughout the ship and engage guests in storylines. The trip also includes a visit to Batuu, a.k.a. Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge in Disney's Hollywood Studios. You can view sample itineraries and explore ship spaces at the Galactic Starcruiser website. You can also watch a 20-minute roundtable with Disney Imagineers about the experience below!

As for how much this unique luxury experience will cost you, expect Galactic Starcruiser to blow up your bank account's reactor core. For two guests in a standard cabin, the voyage total is $4,809. For three guests (two adults, one child), it's $5,299. For four guests (three adults, one child), it's $5,999. For that, you'll get:

  • Valet parking
  • 2-night stay in a cabin
  • Ongoing, immersive, and interactive entertainment
  • Food and beverages on the starcruiser (excluding alcoholic and specialty beverages)
  • A meal at Docking Bay 7 Food and Cargo
  • Admission to Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge
  • Exclusive Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser databand (MagicBand)

So, any loyal Star Wars Bits readers out there want to give me $5,000?

Inside Intel: Palpatine's Contingency Plan

StarWars.com has a great article about Emperor Palpatine's contingency plan and how the Sith Master returned Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. Here's an excerpt:

"When Palpatine was killed on the second Death Star, his consciousness transferred to a clone of his own body on Exegol but the body was too weak to contain him. This led to Palpatine creating more clones and strand-casts of himself in the hopes that one would offer a more suitable vessel for him to inhabit. All of this effort ultimately culminated in Rey, the daughter of one of Palpatine's strand-casts. She was the perfect vessel — but her father and mother did everything they could to hide her from her sinister grandfather."

The Armorer’s Mandalorian Forge LEGO Set

Arriving September 1, The Armorer's Mandalorian Forge, as seen in Disney+'s The Mandalorian, is getting the LEGO treatment with a fun new playset that includes minifigures of Paz Vizsla, the Armorer, and Din Djarin. Check out StarWars.com's interview with LEGO Star Wars designers Jan Neergaard Olesen and Madison Andrew O'Neil to learn more about the creation of this new playset, which is now available for pre-order in the U.S. exclusively at Target and LEGO retail stores.

The R2-D2 Tamagotchi

Tamagotchi, the classic handheld digital pet, is releasing its first-ever Star Wars device! Celebrating the galaxy's most incredible astromech droid, the R2-D2 Tamagotchi arrives on November 11 and will be available in two shells inspired by the nearsighted scrap pile.

"The R2-D2 Tamagotchi will be available in two shells inspired by Artoo, with the iconic Tamagotchi display featuring adorable animations of the astromech. Loaded with various interactive experiences, fans will train R2-D2 to master 19 different skills; keep R2-D2 charged, clean, and playing two mini-games, including firefighting and Dejarik (a.k.a. holochess); help R2-D2 unlock seven more mini-games; and they must keep R2-D2 happy. (If he's neglected for too long, Jawas may come take Artoo away!)"

Pre-order the Star Wars R2-D2 Tamagotchi for $19.99 at Amazon.

Hot Toys Luke Skywalker Sixth-Scale Figure Preview

To commemorate his appearance in the Season 2 finale of The Mandalorian, Hot Toys is releasing a sixth-scale Luke Skywalker figure as a part of its premium DX series. A release date for the figure hasn't been announced, but Justin's Collection has a preview of the collectible, which you can check out below!

This Week! in Star Wars

This week in Star Wars, host Kristin Baver gives us the lowdown on all the latest news from that galaxy far, far away!

And that's it for this edition of Star Wars Bits! If you have something cool from the Star Wars universe that should be included in this column, reach out on Twitter!