‘Star Wars’: ‘The Mandalorian’ Might Be the Start of an ‘Arrowverse’-style Disney+ Universe

The Mandalorian has done a lot more than given Disney+ a solid launchpad. The series has also given the Star Wars saga some much-needed direction. In fact, a new report claims the Jon Favreau-created show could be the foundation for an entirely new era of Star Wars storytelling.

A panel at 'The Mandalorian' premiere
A panel at ‘The Mandalorian’ premiere | Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney

‘The Mandalorian’ has opened the doors to more live-action TV shows

When Lucasfilm announced The Mandalorian, fans always imagined it could be the start of something big. After all, the show is the first live-action Star Wars series. After animated hits like Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels, clearly television proved to be a natural fit for the saga. Even Mark Hamill acknowledged how fitting the medium is.

So far, Disney+ has revealed its plans for a show based on Diego Luna’s Rogue One character Cassian Andor and Ewan McGregor’s Obi-Wan Kenobi. However, both of those shows feel more like limited series giving the movies’ actors more time to shine.

Neither seem like they intend to build on the narrative of The Mandalorian. Instead, they will probably fill in gaps between big-screen entries. But if this latest report is accurate, Lucasfilm has something way more ambitious waiting for fans in the near future.

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Which other ‘Star Wars’ series could the show connect to?

According to LRM Online, Lucasfilm does indeed have plans to build out its Disney+ programming. In fact, the company hopes to release a new live-action Star Wars show every quarter beginning in mid-2021. Furthermore, these series won’t be standalones like the Obi-Wan Kenobi show. Instead, they’ll be interconnected by one big-picture storyline.

This ambitious plan would encompass The Mandalorian as well as separate shows centered on fan-favorites Ahsoka Tano, Boba Fett, Rebels’ Ezra Bridger and Grand Admiral Thrawn, and one anchored by a mysterious new character. Dave Filoni — the creative lead behind much of Star Wars TV — will oversee the shows.

If it holds true, this news would confirm a lot of the rumors regarding upcoming Disney+ shows set in the “galaxy far, far away.” But since we know Favreau and Filoni are already planning The Mandalorian Season 3, it’s certainly possible this grand vision motivated that much forethought.

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Does this mean the Disney+ shows will stay separate from the movies?

LRM Online compares the Star Wars Disney+ plan to Game of Thrones. But in actuality, the approach sounds a lot more like The CW’s “Arrowverse.” That group of shows are also all set in the same universe and intersect at varying points. And the several years have all featured mega-crossover events involving all the shows on the network.

But if this is what Lucasfilm has planned, the question remains: what about the movies? After Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, fans have no clue what the films will cover. Taika Waititi is signed on to co-write and direct an upcoming release. Yet, in all likelihood, it will remain separate from the Disney+, perhaps even set in another era entirely.

For years, Lucasfilm’s Disney-owned sister company, Marvel, used a similar tactic to keep its movie and TV divisions separate. ABC shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Netflix series like Daredevil referenced the movies. But until a brief Agent Carter cameo in Avengers: Endgame, the movies never returned the favor. Is this the model Star Wars will emulate going forward?