CEO Bob Iger also reveals the premiere date for the continuing adventures of "Baby Yoda" and his sidekick "The Mandalorian" in Season 2.
While it may not have looked like it after "Solo," "The Last Jedi" and "The Rise of Skywalker," Disney CEO Bob Iger assured investors and fans that the future of "Star Wars" is indeed bright.
It might just look a little different for awhile, as he emphasized that the company is looking at the breakthrough success of Pedro Pascal's "The Mandalorian" -- both critically and fan-embraced -- as a model for the immediate future of "Star Wars."
"The priority in the next few years is television," Iger told shareholders on the company's latest quarterly financial earnings call. Specifically, he announced the return of "The Mandalorian" for its second season in October 2020, and teased what fans can look for to happen both in that series and perhaps coming out of it.
He talked about "the possibility of infusing [the Disney+ series] with more characters and the possibility of taking those characters in their own direction in terms of series," while promising that there is "more coming" even after the upcoming Season 2. Considering what a smash hit its been, and a marquee title for Disney+, this comes as a surprise to no one.
Longtime fans of "Star Wars" know all about how successful it can be to spin characters off into their own stories and sagas as it's been going on for decades in the Expanded Universe of books and comics and video games, both before and after Disney rebooted those and created a "Legacy" continuity.
But the point stands, there are literally thousands of characters and storylines across millennia that have successfully expanded the "Star Wars" universe. Book and comic book series have proven that fans will embrace long-form storytelling in this world, too, not to mention its incredible success across multiple animated series.
Fans have been clamoring for Disney to offer up a live-action story set in the "Star Wars" universe, and "The Mandalorian" proved that it doesn't have to necessarily tie into the "Episode" stories at all to be embraced by fandom. It just has to be good.
That said, they're also pretty excited about Ewan McGregor's upcoming "Obi-Wan" series -- which is currently undergoing script retooling -- and the "Rogue One" spinoff series starring Diego Luna's Cassian Andor.
So there's life that can spring out of the films and "The Mandalorians," but Disney shouldn't shy away from experimenting with wholly new stories and characters in this universe, too.
That said, if Disney wanted anything good to come out of "Solo," they could quickly look into either the ongoing adventures of Donald Glover's Lando Calrissian, or even an exploration of just how Ray Park's Darth Maul survived "The Phantom Menace" and his subsequent rise to power.
Of course, this doesn't mean "Star Wars" is gone from the multiplexes forever. Rian Johnson is still reportedly working on a new film trilogy, while Marvel head honcho Kevin Feige is developing a film as well, though neither of those projects has a timeline for even going into production, much less seeing a theatrical release.