Questions about the fate of Patty Jenkins’ “Rogue Squadron” began circulating nearly a year ago, and intensified after the Star Wars film went unmentioned at Disney’s annual D23 Expo last weekend.
On Thursday, the studio officially removed the Lucasfilm project from its calendar when announcing a spate of title reveals and date changes for its theatrical releases in 2023 and 2024. The absence of “Rogue Squadron” from the lineup called into question whether the film will come to fruition at all.
Among the other announcements, Disney confirmed that “Wish” will take the coveted Thanksgiving release date next year.
It also revealed that “Elio” is the untitled Pixar film dated March 1, 2024, “Snow White” is the untitled Disney live action film dated March 22, 2024, “Inside Out 2” is the untitled Pixar project due out on June 14, 2024 and “Mufasa: The Lion King” is the untitled Disney live action film set for release on July 5, 2024.
“Haunted Mansion” shifted from March 10, 2023 to Aug. 11, 2023 and Disney announced its Searchlight film “Next Goal Wins” would be released on April 21, 2023.
But, it’s the removal of “Rogue Squadron” that is most notable.
Last November, reports surfaced that Jenkins was no longer available to film the Star Wars project during its initial production date since she was committed to other features, including a third Wonder Woman film for Warner Bros. and a Cleopatra film for Paramount. The suggestion was that Jenkin’s Star Wars feature would be punted down the calendar to another date.
“Rogue Squadron” was set to be the first theatrical Star Wars film since the 2019 release of “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” which received middling reviews and generated over $1 billion in ticket sales worldwide.
The path for future Star Wars films has been unclear since “Rise of Skywalker” was released. While the studio has several projects in development, including one from Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige and one from acclaimed director Taika Waititi, Disney has focused on telling Star Wars stories through serial content on streaming service Disney+ with hit shows like “The Mandalorian.”
There’s even talk that “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” director Rian Johnson is still attached to a stand-alone trilogy set within the Star Wars universe.
But with no major announcements from Disney, particularly at its major expo last weekend, more questions arose about the future of Star Wars in cinemas.
For now, it seems that the future of Star Wars will remain on Disney+. In addition to “The Mandalorian,” “The Book of Boba Fett” and “Obi-Wan Kenobi,” Disney has has live-action series featuring characters Cassian Andor and Ahsoka Tano set for release. Additionally, its animated content continues to thrive as new seasons of “The Bad Batch” continue to be released and the studio has plans to release a series of shorts called “Tales of the Jedi.”