Lucasfilm, which is now owned by Disney and is working on a new trilogy of “Star Wars” movies, announced today that it’s essentially killing off the vast series books, comics, and video games that have spun off the original “Star Wars” movies.
Most of that extra material, commonly referred to as the Expanded Universe, explains what happens after “Return of the Jedi,” the third movie in the original trilogy that ended with Darth Vader’s death.
Disney’s new trilogy of “Star Wars” movies will begin with “Episode VII” and will be the official sequels to “Return of the Jedi.” In order to keep the storyline fresh and exciting, Disney decided to throw out the events that happen in the Expanded Universe and start over. After all, what would be the point of watching the new movies if we already know what’s going to happen thanks to the Expanded Universe?
Moving forward, Lucasfilm/Disney will have a group of people tasked with making sure future Star Wars cartoons, books, comics, video games, etc. fall within the official storyline. That official storyline now only includes the six existing “Star Wars” movies, Episodes I through VI, and the “Clone Wars” cartoon series that aired on Cartoon Network.
All the other Expanded Universe material that has been published over the years will continue to exist, but will be rebranded under the “Star Wars Legends” banner. They’re fun and interesting stories, but readers should note they do not reflect the official storyline that will take place in all future “Star Wars” material produced from now on. However, Lucasfilm did say some elements from the Expanded Universe like certain characters and organizations might make it into future “Star Wars” movies, books, etc.
Note that in the announcement it says “Lucas always made it clear that he was not beholden to the EU [Expanded Universe].”
“Episode VII” will premiere on December 18, 2015. There will be two more movies, “Episode VIII” and “Episode IX”, after that.
The Expanded Universe really got cranking once it became clear George Lucas wasn’t going to make any sequels to “Return of the Jedi.” That gave sci-fi writers the right to license “Star Wars” and its characters to come up with what happens to Luke Skywalker and crew after the final movie. But when Disney announced it was buying Lucasfilm in 2012 and planned to make a new “Star Wars” trilogy, it didn’t make sense for the company to adhere to the Expanded Universe material.
Here’s a video from Lucasfilm explaining the changes:
Here’s the announcement from Lucasfilm:
For over 35 years, the Expanded Universe has enriched the Star Wars experience for fans seeking to continue the adventure beyond what is seen on the screen. When he created Star Wars, George Lucas built a universe that sparked the imagination, and inspired others to create. He opened up that universe to be a creative space for other people to tell their own tales. This became the Expanded — For more information read the original article here.