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New Star Wars Show Creator Is Happy to Not Use Luke Skywalker

The Acolyte creator Leslye Headland is happy to not use Luke Skywalker and other Star Wars legacy characters, and instead explore new stories.

The Acolyte creator Leslye Headland is happy to not use Luke Skywalker and other Star Wars legacy characters in the new show. Headland’s upcoming Disney+ series will explore an era set well before the events of Star Wars: The Phantom Menace known as the High Republic era. As such, The Acolyte series will explore how the influence of the Dark Side grew prior to Palpatine’s (Ian McDiarmid) ascension.

While much of Disney+’s current Star Wars output has expanded on familiar stories that audiences have seen onscreen, such as The Mandalorian and the soon-to-be-released Obi-Wan Kenobi, Headland’s upcoming series will take audiences into a previously unexplored era. The Acolyte will be set during the final days of the High Republic, a period recently introduced in 2021 through The High Republic publishing initiative, where the Republic expanded across the galaxy and the Jedi were at their prime. With The Acolyte set to explore what lead to the Star Wars prequel trilogy’s events, the series will break new ground in telling a story that is far removed from the Skywalker Saga.

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In an interview with Vanity Fair, Headland explained that while she felt some pressure developing the series, she was glad to be free of using legacy characters like Luke Skywalker. The showrunner explained that she would rather avoid telling stories with those casts due to the intensity and iconography surrounding them. Headland concluded by emphasizing The Acolyte‘s new setting, stating that she hopes to fully explore the era and how the galaxy looked in prosperous times for the Republic and Jedi Order, as well as their eventual downfall. Check out Headland’s full response below.


“I feel a lot of pressure, but I also feel—weirdly—enormous amounts of freedom because I don’t feel like I’m dealing with legacy characters, which is a lot scarier… I mean, you could not pay me enough money to try to be in the Luke Skywalker timeline. I’m like, “No, thank you!” [Laughs.] It’s just too intense. There’s too much iconography and intensity with those particular characters … Whereas, I think I’m telling a story that’s more about a timeline we don’t know much about. Let’s hang out here for a little bit and check out what Star Wars looks like when the good guys are actually in charge. What happens? We know what it eventually leads to, so let’s explore. What are the holes that we can poke into what happened?”

Headland had already teased details about the Jedi Order of The Acolyte, describing the costumes of her Jedi characters — which are different to those post-Phantom Menace — and how their designs are significant to the series’ story. The showrunner described the Jedi Order’s robes as in a pristine condition consisting of whites and golds, much like the designs seen throughout other High Republic stories. Headland then suggested that this was due to the Jedi Order’s lack of an active role in the galaxy, unlike their later-era Star Wars counterparts, as the Order were taking part in very few skirmishes or conflicts in this period.


The Acolyte could prove to be one of Star Wars‘ most unique projects, as it is so distinctly removed from prior onscreen stories to date. Headland’s show is also seemingly seperate from other High Republic tales, as most currently released works within the era take place 98 years prior to the events of the new series. As Lucasfilm moves away from the Skywalker saga, Headland is free of having to limit her story to a familiar cast with a beloved and well-trodden history, making room for her own distinct take on the Star Wars universe.

Next: The Acolyte Can Restore A Sith Legacy Star Wars Movies Ignored


Source: Vanity Fair

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