Lucasfilm’s Kathleen Kennedy Explains How Star Wars Will Balance Movies And Television Series Moving Forward

For a long time, the main way you could explore the Star Wars franchise was in a cinematic setting, but over the last decade and a half, the small screen has become significantly more important to this franchise. While Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels were certainly integral to expanding this lore, starting with The Mandalorian, now there are plenty of live-action Star Wars TV shows here or on the way that are accessible with a Disney+ subscription. But Star Wars movies aren’t being tossed aside as a result, and Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy explained to CinemaBlend how this franchise will balance movie and TV shows going forward.

Our own Law Sharma spoke with Kathleen Kennedy at Star Wars Celebration, and in addition to getting an update from her on what’s happening with the Lando Calrissian series, he also inquired about what the balance looks like with focusing on both Star Wars movies and TV shows. After saying it was interesting he’d ask that because she’s “in the middle of that right now,” Kennedy answered:

… The balance is that we just pursue quality. That’s the most important thing to us, and it’s fascinating with television now that we’ve got a lot of people that used to only do movies [are now] very interested in television, and vice-versa. So we have talent across the board as we talk about these stories. And I think identifying what goes on a movie screen is so important nowadays because you need that sense of spectacle and scale and size. Where on television, you can explore characters with a lot more depth and really get inside backstory and that kind of thing. So it’s a really nice compliment.

Like Kathleen Kennedy said, the TV landscape is certainly nowadays compared to even just 10 years ago. Many people who you normally associate with working on movies have lent their talents to high-profile TV shows, like Matthew McConaughey starring in True Detective Season 1, or David Fincher helming episodes of Mindhunter. On the Star Wars side of things, filmmakers like Robert Rodriguez, Peyton Reed and Taika Waititi have directed episodes of The Mandalorian and/or The Book of Boba Fett, and frankly, what these live-action Star Wars shows have been able to pull off with action, visual effects, etc, feel like they would have looked just as good in a Star Wars movie.

At the same time, Kathleen Kennedy is aware that spectacle, scale and size are what draw people to see a blockbuster movie in theaters. Shows like The Mandalorian certainly aren’t lacking in action, but they’re arguably more focused on introspection and characterization. Disney+ is a good platform to tell those kind of stories, whereas with something like Patty Jenkins’ upcoming Rogue Squadron, watching X-Wings fly around and shoot down TIE Fighters is the kind of thing that’s practically tailor-made for silver screen presentation. That’s not to say the movies will toss out character-building, but Kennedy and the rest of the Lucasfilm creative minds behind Star Wars want to deliver tales that people won’t hesitate to pay the price of a movie ticket to check out.

In the Star Wars TV realm, Obi-Wan Kenobi has finally premiered, and after it’s done, Andor (which dropped its first trailer) will premiere its first two episodes on August 31. On the film side of things, although Taika Waititi’s Star Wars movie doesn’t have a release date yet, it’s expected to be the next installment in this corner of the Star Wars franchise, while Rogue Squadron as been “pushed off to the side for the moment.” Continue visiting CinemaBlend for all the latest and greatest Star Wars news.

Adam Holmes
Senior Content Producer

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.