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The Acolyte: 6 Quick Things We Know About The Upcoming Star Wars TV Series

The logo for The Acolyte.
(Image credit: Disney+)

Disney+ has produced some awesome shows over since its initial launch, and one that blew up at first was the legendary The Mandalorian. From there, a whole new world of Star Wars series was born, from the fun The Book of Boba Fett to the 2022 TV schedule release, Obi-Wan Kenobi. 

As is now tradition, many more new shows are coming out soon, and The Acolyte just happens to be one of them. It was originally announced in 2020, but we've recently gotten some updates on the upcoming Star Wars series, so here are six quick things we know about the show, and what you can expect. 

The Disney+ logo

(Image credit: Disney+)

The Acolyte Does Not Have A Set Release Date

As is expected, The Acolyte does not have a set release date yet, which isn’t that surprising. With the number of Star Wars shows in development at Disney+, and with The Mandalorian Season 3 coming out in early 2023, we probably won’t hear any news about a set premiere date until the beginning of that year - maybe the very end of 2022, if we’re lucky. So, we’re just going to have to bide our time and watch other Star Wars content until then. 

Natasha Lyonne in Russian Doll, the show the creator of The Acolyte co-created.

(Image credit: Netflix)

The Co-Creator Of Russian Doll Is Creating The Acolyte

However, get excited, because the creator of another awesome show is going to be heading the team for The Acolyte. According to Variety, Russian Doll co-creator Leslye Headland has been tapped to work on this new show, and is set to bring it to life. 

Russian Doll, starring Natasha Lyonne, released its second season in April 2022 to rave reviews, so it’s great to hear that someone who has created a show that is so widely praised will be leading us into the next great Star Wars adventure. 

Ahsoka Tano in The Book of Boba Fett - who is also an amazing female character in the Star Was universe.

(Image credit: Disney+)

The Acolyte Is Going To Be Female-Centric, And Will Have Plenty Of Other Great Characters

The Star Wars universe has plenty of amazing characters in it, and The Acolyte is only going to add to that with amazing female characters, as the creator has said that the new show is going to be female-centric, according to The Playlist.

Leslye Headland commented on the show and the way that it is moving along, saying that just because it's centered around a female protagonist, that doesn't mean that other characters would be excluded: 

Just because my show is technically, yes, ‘female-centric’, meaning it centers around a female protagonist, I don’t think that necessarily excludes men from that space. I relate to male characters all the time. I root for Mando. I root for Luke…an inclusive space means an inclusive space. But at the same time, I think that just because something has a female protagonist doesn’t necessarily mean it’s only for women.

There are so many fascinating characters within Star Wars, and I have a feeling that The Acolyte is only going to add to that and give us some characters that we’re really going to love.  

the hate u give amandla stenberg

(Image credit: 20th Century Fox)

Amandla Stenberg Will Lead The Series, And They're Still Casting Other Characters

While not much is known about the cast of the upcoming Star Wars series, one confirmed cast member is already set. According to Deadline, Amandla Stenberg is set to play the lead. While details have not been confirmed, the article also mentioned that production for the show is set to begin in 2022, which means it might not be long before we see photos of Stenberg in costume. 

Stenberg has made waves in the entertainment industry, gaining popularity for her portrayal of Rue in The Hunger Games series, and continuing to have roles in several big movies and shows such as Rio, Sleepy Hollow, the romantic teen film, Everything, Everything, The Hate U Give, and more. It’ll be exciting seeing her join the Star Wars universe. 

Though the lead is set, there are still plenty of other characters for the series that need to be cast. According to The Illuminerdi, two new characters have been listed in casting calls under the names, “Paul" and "Miri,” but not much else is known besides the ages they want them to be, as well as their race. Most of their story still remains a mystery - one that will hopefully be solved before much longer. 

Bruce Lee in The Way of the Dragon.

(Image credit: Golden Harvest)

The Thriller Is Influenced By Martial Arts Films

If you’re a fan of martial arts movies or maybe Bruce Lee films, and also happen to enjoy the Star Wars universe, then The Acolyte might be for you. According to a Vanity Fair interview with Headland, she noted that the show was often influenced by old martial arts films, saying she wanted to go in a little bit of a different direction than other Star Wars show creators: 

Jon Favreau said that when you're working in this world, you want to go back to what George was inspired by. There were Westerns and then of course, Akira Kurosawa samurai films, and the fact that he originally offered Obi-Wan Kenobi to Toshiro Mifune…so I actually went more toward martial arts films, and storylines that are a little bit more personal and less global and galactic. Those warriors were on missions that were deeply personal, with people feeling wronged and having to make it right. Wuxia Films and martial arts films from King Hu and the Shaw Brothers, like Come Drink With Me and Touch Of Zen. They're monks that are also martial arts heroes.

As you hear more about this show, you can’t help but wonder exactly how cool it is going to be. A Star Wars show that is based off of martial arts movies and has a thrilling mystery behind it? Sign me up. 

Liam Neeson, Jake Lloyd, and Ewan McGregor in Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace

(Image credit: 20th Century Fox)

The Show Will Be Set A Century Before ‘The Phantom Menace’

Probably one of the biggest pieces of news that has come out about The Acolyte that everyone is excited about is that this show isn’t going to take place during the Skywalker saga. This marks the first time ever we have seen a show that is going to be nowhere near that. Instead, Vanity Fair confirmed that The Acolyte would take place nearly a century before The Phantom Menace. 

That’s right, before Anakin Skywalker - Darth Vader - himself. Headland said:

The Acolyte takes place roughly 100 years before The Phantom Menace: A lot of those characters haven’t even been born yet. We’re taking a look at the political and personal and spiritual things that came up in a time period that we don’t know much about. My question when watching The Phantom Menace was always like, ‘Well, how did things get to this point?’ How did we get to a point where a Sith lord can infiltrate the Senate and none of the Jedi pick up on it? Like, what went wrong? What are the scenarios that led us to this moment?'

I always thought about that, too, and I can’t wait to see how Headland answers those questions - and I can’t wait to see a Star Wars that isn’t entirely focused around a Skywalker or in a post-Skywalker world.

While we’re going to have to wait a while to see any footage for The Acolyte, I know that no matter what or when it comes out, it’s going to be awesome. Until then, be sure to check out all the Star Wars content that Disney+ has to offer - because trust me, there is a lot of it. 

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Big nerd and lover of Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire. Will forever hate season eight. Superhero and horror geek. And please don't debate me on The Last of Us 2, it was amazing!