Rian Johnson Creating Star Wars Series?

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Rian Johnson says he will direct a “Star Wars anything” which could mean he will be given a series.

By Jonathan Klotz
| Published

Director of The Last Jedi, Rian Johnson, has said in an interview that he is open to developing a Star Wars television series. The Knives Out director has been busy with his growing Daniel Craig starring franchise, which recently saw the second film, The Glass Onion, debut on Netflix. As reported by Screenrant, Johnson said he would “do a Star Wars anything.”

Prior to his detective franchise taking off, Johnson was set to create and direct a new trilogy of movies set in a galaxy far, far away. With no progress being made on the movie trilogy in the last few years, partially due to his other commitments and partially to Disney pivoting the franchise to its Disney+ streaming service, the director’s Star Wars story may be better served on the small screen. Ever since The Mandolarian debuted to critical and fan acclaim, episodic series has taken the place of blockbuster movies for the franchise.

The Last Jedi, Johnson’s only outing in the Star Wars universe, did not debut to critical and fan acclaim. Widely regarded by fans as one of the worst Star Wars movies ever, the director’s willingness to work in any medium could be seen as a threat. Plot points and characters introduced in the second movie of the latest trilogy were left dangling or outright ignored by The Rise of Skywalker.

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The derision Star Wars fans have for Rian Johnson stands out in stark comparison to the other works by the director where he is often hailed as being a visionary. Knives Out was a surprise smash hit, almost single handily reviving the classic murder mystery movie, while Poker Face, his case of the week series with Natasha Lyonne, looks to do the same with detective procedurals. Sometimes it feels like Johnson could turn water into wine and Skywalker fans will never forgive him for the anti-climactic Supreme Leader Snoke scenes.

If Johnson’s proposed Star Wars movies do make the transition to the streaming service, it will not be the first-time projects shifted mediums. Ewan McGregor’s Obi-Wan series was originally supposed to be a movie before finally airing as an episodic streaming series. Ever since the dismal box office results of Solo: A Star Wars Story and the success of The Mandalorian, more and more formerly high-profile movies have been pivoting to streaming.

Disney+, as a platform for smaller-scale stories set in the Star Wars universe, has been a success for the franchise. Andor, the recent spin-off bringing back Diego Luna’s Rogue One character, has been praised for showing a side of the fictional universe that the movies ignored. Small-scale episodes let the writers highlight what life is like for ordinary citizens living under The Empire’s oppressive regime and the creative ways that the Rebel Alliance found to fight back.

A case could be made that with less of a sense of spectacle and grand special effects expected of modern-day blockbusters, a small-scale streaming series would be the best way for Rian Johnson to create his next Star Wars story. If nothing else, the thought of a Knives Out-style murder mystery set within the Star Wars universe has potential. No matter how Johnson adds to the world-famous franchise, even if the series is good, it is likely Star Wars fans will never, ever, forgive The Last Jedi.

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