In the world of post-Rise of Skywalker cinematic entries, the Star Wars franchise is in a bit of a holding pattern. Director Patty Jenkins’ Star Wars: Rogue Squadron film is one of the clearest examples of such a development, as production has been delayed indefinitely since last fall. At the same time, there’s been no official announcement of cancellation, with the December 2023 release date earmarked for the film still remaining on Disney’s release calendar. So is Rogue Squadron still happening? Let’s take a look at the latest mention of this hotly anticipated title, and discuss.
Twitter user “Jedi4Liberty,” a co-host of the fan run Scarif Podcast, recently attended GalaxyCon and ran into someone who would know a thing or two about the Rogue Squadron saga. Meeting with prolific Star Wars author Michael A. Stackpole, the man who helped create the X-Wing novels that detailed a post-Return of the Jedi incarnation of hot shots flying under that same banner, two promising updates came to be revealed. Here’s the text of that message:
If Michael A. Stackpole’s knowledge is anything to go by, Star Wars: Rogue Squadron definitely sounds like it’s alive and well. What’s more, the author from the Star Wars Legends era of literary canon also confirms that Patty Jenkins has consulted him when it comes to the contents of this story. While we know we won’t see a direct adaptation of the novels in that series, it’s very clear that Jenkins and writer Matthew Robinson have a reverence to the series that fans know and love from their past.
That could be the major sticking point to the alleged script disagreements that put the production of Star Wars: Rogue Squadron on hold in the first place, but we can't say that for sure. At the moment, it sounds like we’re still going to get to see this project take flight. The only questions that need to be answered are when will production begin, and will it be with Patty Jenkins at the helm?
When last we heard, Jenkins’ participation is still in play. This is especially pertinent as she was reported to have dropped out of directing Cleopatra with Gal Gadot, in order to focus on both Wonder Woman 3 and Star Wars: Rogue Squadron. Seeing as the DC Comics/Warner Bros sequel "probably" won't start filming until 2023, Patty Jenkins' work in the galaxy far, far away would seem to take priority.
Of course, there’s a tantalizing prospect that sits in-between cancellation and progress, as this potential new Star Wars franchise could see itself being retooled in more ways than one. With the success of The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett bolstering Disney+’s streaming offerings, there may be a mindset afoot to turn Star Wars: Rogue Squadron into a series rather than a movie.
While that’s pure speculation, it’s hard not to think that this could be a way to clear some room for other cinematic offerings that are in development, such as the recently rumored project headed up by Watchmen’s Damon Lindelof. Not to mention, Patty Jenkins could still develop and direct episodes for the series, while also freeing herself up to further shape Wonder Woman 3 at the same time.
Currently, all that’s known for sure is that Patty Jenkins’ Star Wars: Rogue Squadron is still maintaining its release date of December 22, 2023, as part of the upcoming Star Wars release schedule. Part of the strategy to provide alternating Star Wars/Avatar offerings for the holiday box office, the date doesn’t seem to be in question, but rather the film that will fit into it. For now, we’ll just have to wait and see, while keeping a close eye on the 2022 movie releases, in hopes that nothing else decides to shift Disney’s release date landscape. (We’re looking at you, Avatar 2.)
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