The Skywalker Saga may be over, but the world of Star Wars is only getting bigger.
Lucasfilm presented its upcoming slate at the kickoff panel for "Star Wars Celebration" in Anaheim, Calif. on May 26 and sent fans into a tizzy with multiple new announcements, plus a surprise screening for the new show Obi-Wan Kenobi, which premieres May 27. Stars and creators from all over the world of Lucasfilm — including Harrison Ford who made a surprise appearance to talk about Indiana Jones 5, which doesn't yet have a title — along with Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy were in attendance to show off some of the content coming down the pipeline, including new shows Andor, Willow, Ahsoka, and the next season of The Mandalorian.
One thing that did not get addressed during the showcase was the future of Star Wars movies. While it's been announced that Taika Waititi will be working on the next installment, there was no mention of that project on stage. Instead, the focus was on the huge slate of TV shows on the way, plus a couple of other Lucasfilm projects outside of the Star Wars universe.
The next Disney+ series stars Ewan McGregor and Hayden Christensen, who were the first to hit the stage, followed by Kennedy, director Deborah Chow, and actors Rupert Friend and Moses Ingram. They didn't have a ton of surprises to share, given that the show was going to premiere within a matter of hours of the panel, but both McGregor and Christensen spoke about how excited they were to return to the roles of Obi-Wan and Anakin/Darth Vader, respectively. McGregor said it was "really special" to come back to the role of Obi-Wan.
"The last five or six years, we started to feel all of your love for the prequels that we made," he said. "The truth is that that has meant an enormous amount to us. … It didn't feel like that when they came out at first."
Christensen echoed those feelings, and said it felt "amazing" to pick up a lightsaber again. "There's nothing like it," he said.
Friend added that it was incredibly hard not to make the noise whenever he got to use his double-sided lightsaber.
Towards the end of the showcase, Kennedy introduced composer John Williams to lead the first public performance of the brand new Obi-Wan Kenobi theme, which fans will get to hear when the show premieres.
To promote the forthcoming Rogue One prequel Andor, leading man Diego Luna was on hand with Kennedy, creator Tony Gilroy, producer Sanne Wohlenberg, and actor Genevieve O'Reilly, who is reprising her role as Mon Mothma, one of the founders of the Rebel Alliance. Gilroy actually had a lot of secrets to share about the series, which is already set for two seasons of 12 episodes each. The show will start five years before the events of Rogue One (which took place directly before the events of A New Hope), and the first 12 episodes will cover about a year. A second season of 12 more episodes will cover the next four years, and the final scene will lead directly into the events depicted in Rogue One.
Luna said he was excited because the show has the most to do "with us," and is all about Cassian Andor's awakening.
"The beauty of this show is there's no way they'll kill me," he joked, before letting fans in on a few hints about what Cassian was like five years before we first met him.
"Everything feels different. We have the chance to go as far as possible from that amazing man who was willing to sacrifice himself," he explained. "You're not going to recognize Cassian at the beginning. He's a very selfish man. You're waiting for that awakening to happen."
A teaser trailer offered just a glimpse of that pre-awakening Cassian, and confirmed that the first season will premiere with two episodes on August 31 on Disney+.
Kennedy then took a break from a galaxy far far away to introduce Ron Howard and Jonathan Kasdan, director and showrunner of the upcoming Willow series. Warwick Davis and Joanne Whalley, who are returning for the Disney+ show, also took the stage to share their excitement about returning to the roles they originated in the 1988 movie. Kasdan explained that the show takes place 20 years — or 250 moons — after the movie. It introduces three heroines — Kit (Ruby Cruz), Dove (Ellie Bamber), and Jade (Erin Kellyman) — who are in search of Willow (Davis), the most famous sorcerer on the planet. Kit is the daughter of Sorsha (Whalley), while Dove is a maid and Jade is training to be a warrior.
Willow will also be a family affair for Davis, as his real-life daughter Annabelle will play Willow's daughter, and his son Harrison serves as Willow's "very capable" stunt double.
A teaser for this show was also revealed, announcing the show will premiere on Nov. 30.
Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni didn't have too much to share about the next season of The Mandalorian, which comes in 2023, but they did reveal that Katee Sackhoff will return as Bo-Katan Kryze. However, their lack of news during this panel might be because they have a full panel of their own on May 28. Stay tuned here for what comes out of that event.
Jon Watts and Chris Ford were brought out to introduce their new show, which appears to not be based on any other existing stories. It's called Skeleton Crew, and is about a group of 10 year olds from a tiny planet who get lost in the galaxy and have to find their way home. It exists in the same post-Return of the Jedi timeline as The Mandalorian, and stars Jude Law. Watts explained that they were excited to give a "different perspective" of the Star Wars universe, through the eyes of children. However, it will not be a show for kids.
No premiere date has been announced yet.
After Williams performed the new Obi-Wan Kenobi theme, he led his orchestra in the Indiana Jones theme, which was followed by the arrival of Ford on stage. Ford revealed that that theme "follows him everywhere he goes," but it's fine because he's happy about it. "That music was playing on the speakers in the operating room when I had my last colonoscopy. … I passed."
"We have almost completed the next Indiana Jones film, featuring the music of John Williams. And I had the wonderful experience of working with James Mangold, with Kathy [Kennedy]," he said. "And I am really proud of the movie that we made. So I'll be seeing you around campus."
The film is currently set to be released on June 30, 2023. It also stars Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Mads Mikkelsen, Antonio Banderas, Boyd Holbrook, Shaunette Renee Wilson, Thomas Kretschmann, and Toby Jones. Director James Mangold and producer Frank Marshall were also on hand at the celebration.
See a first look below.