James Mangold Says His ‘Star Wars’ Movie Is ‘All New Characters in an All-New Era’

The “Logan” filmmaker also tells TheWrap that he’s writing the project himself

Getty Images

While Daisy Ridley is reprising her role as Rey in an upcoming “Star Wars” film, another feature in the works will be far less connected to the “Star Wars” characters and eras with which audiences are most familiar. It was announced on Friday that “Logan” and “Ford v. Ferrari” filmmaker James Mangold is directing a “Star Wars” movie set 25,000 years before the events of “A New Hope,” and the director tells TheWrap his movie will uncover an entirely new era of the franchise.

On the press line at Star Wars Celebration, Mangold told TheWrap that he’s writing his “Star Wars” movie himself and that he’s been working on it for “a couple of months.” He’s nicknamed the project “Star Wars Zero” because it tells the origin story of The Force, and will feature “all-new characters in an all-new era.”

Despite being set so far in the past, however, Mangold said the film will not be “pre-tech,” so don’t expect a stone age version of a “Star Wars” movie.

Mangold most recently finished “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny,” which he directed and co-wrote, taking over from Steven Spielberg to shepherd the final installment in the franchise. The “Walk the Line” writer/director was rumored to be involved with “Star Wars” back when Disney first acquired Lucasfilm, potentially on a Boba Fett movie that never materialized, so his journey to a galaxy far, far away may have been years in the making.

His film is one of three that Lucasfilm announced on Friday. Dave Filoni, who has been spearheading the “Star Wars” Disney+ shows with Jon Favreau, is directing a feature set just before the events of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” And Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy is directing a film that takes place 15 years after the events of “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” and finds Ridley’s Rey rebuilding the new Jedi Order.

Mangold is also developing a Buster Keaton biopic for 20th Century Studios and a “Swamp Thing” movie for James Gunn and Peter Safran’s DC universe.

Release dates for these films have not been set.