The Official Star Wars Timeline Just Changed in a Huge Way - Dawn of the Jedi movie James Mangold Lucasfilm 25,000 years ago New Jedi Order Rey Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy movie

The Official Star Wars Timeline Just Changed in a Huge Way

Star Wars Celebration always brings exciting new announcements for fans across the galaxy, but this year saw news that could shake up the future of the canon as we know it. Three new films were announced, two of which take place in parts of the Star Wars timeline we have yet to see represented on screen. As a result, the official Star Wars timeline and canon has completely changed. Below, we break down the new eras of the Star Wars timeline and what they mean for the future of Star Wars stories.

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Ushering in a New Era

James Mangold, who already has a strong relationship with Lucasfilm thanks to his upcoming Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, will helm a new standalone movie set 25,000 years before the prequel films. At the other end of the timeline, Ms. Marvel alum Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy will direct a film that heralds Daisy Ridley’s return as Rey.

With Mangold’s film set during the Dawn of the Jedi and Obaid-Chinoy’s during the New Jedi Order, Star Wars has officially canonized two new eras. It’s an exciting pivot for Lucasfilm away from the Skywalker Saga that has been the primary focus of the franchise for the last 40 years. However, it still remains to be seen: What stories could potentially unfold in these new eras, and what does it mean for the future of the franchise?

The Official Star Wars Timeline Just Changed in a Huge Way - Dawn of the Jedi movie James Mangold Lucasfilm 25,000 years ago

What to Expect with the New Star Wars Timeline

Mangold’s Dawn of the Jedi film is set well before the events of anything we’ve seen on screen, including the forthcoming series The Acolyte, which falls at the end of the High Republic era. While the High Republic era — when the Jedi thrived and were at their highest power — has been heavily explored in books and comics recently, the Dawn of the Jedi era occurs even earlier in a time when the Jedi and the Force first came to be. This era had been explored in Legends (i.e., the original, now non-canon Expanded Universe) comics also titled Dawn of the Jedi. It’s unclear yet whether fans can expect any crossover with characters or stories from the comics to Mangold’s film.

Similarly, the New Jedi Order is an era that has been explored in Legends books and comics, but not yet on screen. While the books saw Luke Skywalker rebuilding the Jedi Order, according to an IGN interview with Kathleen Kennedy, Obaid-Chinoy’s film will be set 15 years after The Rise of Skywalker with Rey taking up Luke’s mantle while the Jedi are in “disarray.” With previous Legends characters like Grand Admiral Thrawn becoming a key part of the current canon, it’s possible that beloved Legends characters like Mara Jade could make an appearance alongside Rey in the New Jedi Order.

The Official Star Wars Timeline Just Changed in a Huge Way - New Jedi Order Rey Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy movie

Why This Is Good News for Star Wars

As far as we know, the films are standalone and not planned trilogies. This seems to be a smart and strategic decision for several reasons. The sequel trilogy notoriously suffered from production issues with the films being handed back and forth from J.J. Abrams and Rian Johnson. However, it also seems like the new films have the potential to interconnect with other Star Wars storytelling.

The third Star Wars movie announced, directed by Dave Filoni, will be a Marvel-esque culmination of the multilayered stories across The Mandalorian, The Book of Boba Fett, and Ahsoka. If successful, this could serve as a blueprint for future hybrid storytelling in the Star Wars universe. At this point, fans should not be surprised if there’s a New Jedi Order television series that spins off of Rey’s standalone film.

In the four years since the conclusion of the sequel trilogy, Star Wars has been a bit at a loss with its films. While the franchise has seen critical and fan acclaim with shows like The Mandalorian and Andor, the new television series have still ended up having ties back to the Skywalker Saga, whether through simple time orientation or direct cameos to classic characters. Fans will always love the original characters and stories, but Star Wars is a universe with limitless potential to explore new themes, places, and people.

With a galaxy as big as Star Wars, it’s limiting to tell stories repeatedly within the same 70-year time frame. With more content than ever to choose from, the franchise can attract new fans with a broad range of entry points while inventing new ways to tell stories in a familiar universe for more passionate fans. Ultimately, for Star Wars to thrive, it needs to evolve past its origins. Expanding the Star Wars timeline may be the beginning of a new era for the franchise itself.

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Molly Turner
Molly Turner has been writing about television, Star Wars, books, and geek media for over three years. Based in New York, she graduated with an MFA in Creative Writing from The New School in 2022. You can find her writing on sites such as The Mary Sue, /Film, and ScreenRant and around the Internet @themollyturner.