As the Star Wars franchise enters its next phase, Acolyte will revisit the last of the big upcoming trilogy, specifically Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi.
Acolyte will take place at the end of the Grand Republic era – hundreds of years after the fall of the Old Republic, and Star Wars : Episode I – roughly a hundred years before the events of The Phantom Menace. Created by Leslye Headland and starring Amandla Stenberg and Lee Jung-jae, Star Wars : The Acolyte follows two Jedi Knights as they investigate a series of crimes that lead to shocking and sinister discoveries. While a release date has yet to be announced, production on the eight-episode series is well underway.
Recently, Headland revealed new details about the show. Speaking with Collider’s Steve Weintraub, Headland compared The Acolyte to Rian Johnson’s Star Wars : The Last Jedi. Headland discussed her thoughts on exploring the fallibility of the Jedi Order, saying, “I think it’s hard to make a show that’s critical of any aspect of the Jedi. I think you’re in [Rian Johnson’s] movie Saw this in. You know what I mean? Like, I think, especially in that moment, people were very nervous to say that this particular establishment might not be a bunch of lighthearted, perfect, amazing heroes that they intended Totally noble. I think one of the things Dave would say is that they’re fallible. That’s really the story George tells in the prequels, right? The downfall of this particular group.
While his exploration of the more problematic aspects of the Jedi Order has stirred up some of the strongest opposition, it’s not the only element of opposition from fans. Some people criticized the film for its goofy moments as they felt they were completely out of place in the film. Others specifically disagreed with Johnson’s decision to make Luke Skywalker bitter and disappointed in the way the Jedi were – something that seemed to find a basis in George Lucas’ ideas for his own Star Wars sequel trilogy. The art book for The Last Jedi featured Lucas’ ideas — many of which Johnson used as inspiration for the film. So while depicting the Jedi as imperfect may not always be popular with fans, Lucas believes it’s important to the franchise.
While it’s too early to tell how fans will react to Acolyte, there’s plenty of reason to believe it will be well-received. The TV episodes in the series have been well-received by fans and critics alike, with even weaker entries like The Book of Boba Fett still getting rave reviews. The film, by contrast, received mixed reviews. An eight-episode series might explore the flaws of the Jedi Order better than a two-hour film. Regardless of the series’ status among fans, it will be exciting to see new parts of the Star Wars timeline explored.
Acolyte will premiere on Disney Plus in 2024.