Especially over the last few years, Star Wars has relied heavily on fan nostalgia. The latest trilogy of movies brought back characters like Luke, Leia, Han Solo, and Lando, while The Mandalorian’s latest season has had characters from the films and animated series return. While Star Wars has seemed to have no problem with mining the past for their present, a new rumor suggests that the Star Wars franchise is looking for more original characters in the future.
This rumor comes from gossip writer Daniel Richtman’s Patreon page, where he states that Lucasfilm wants more original characters for their upcoming films. While especially in recent years, it seems as though Star Wars has made a big deal out of their returning characters, the series has always had a blend of new characters and fan-favorites. For example, even though The Mandalorian has seen the return of characters like Boba Fett and Ahsoka Tano, the series has also focused heavily on series newcomers like Grogu and Din Djarin. The new trilogy brought back characters from the first trilogy, but also introduced us to Kylo Ren, Rey, Finn, and Poe Dameron.
As the Star Wars films seemingly move away from stories centered on the Skywalker family, it makes sense that we would see more original characters. Patty Jenkins’ Rogue Squadron will focus on starfighter pilots, and while we could theoretically see characters we already know through this story, it does at least sound like a story in the Star Wars universe without existing characters. But with Taika Waititi working on his own Star Wars film and Rian Johnson apparently still working on his own Star Wars trilogy, these new films probably don’t need nostalgia when they have such great writers at the helm.
Yet even if the new Star Wars films will supposedly follow original characters, that doesn’t mean the various television series are going to lay off the nostalgia. Not only is The Mandalorian getting the Ahsoka spinoff, but Disney+ will also have its Lando series. Lucasfilm is even working on embracing nostalgia for the recent past, as filming is set to start to begin soon for Ewan McGregor’s Obi-Wan Kenobi, while Andor brings back Rogue One’s Cassian Andor, played by Diego Luna.
But this rumor shouldn’t be a surprise, since Lucasfilm has introduced new, interesting characters ever since The Empire Strikes Back introduced Yoda into the mix. With such an expansive Star Wars galaxy to play with, there’s always plenty of room for new characters and new stories to be told within this world. The only problem is Lucasfilm seems to think that fans need old characters to be invested. For example, Rogue One was told through almost entirely original characters, only for the film to end with a sequence starring Darth Vader. It was exciting, sure, but wholly unnecessary.
However, The Mandalorian has also proved that the audience does want to embrace that nostalgia. They do want to see characters they already know, regardless of how Lucasfilm might want to try and expand this universe. It would be interesting to see if Lucasfilm could make a Star Wars film that doesn’t rely on nostalgia and already known characters, or if audiences wouldn’t stand for seeing a film without characters they already care about.