In February 2018, the pair were tapped to write and produce a new series of films separate from the franchise’s primary Skywalker saga. In a statement, Weiss and Benioff acknowledged that they were dropping out because they wouldn’t have time to focus on both Star Wars and the projects they’re developing as part of a $200 million film and TV deal with Netflix that was announced in August.
“We love Star Wars,” the statement read. “When George Lucas built it, he built us too. Getting to talk about Star Wars with him and the current Star Wars team was the thrill of a lifetime, and we will always be indebted to the saga that changed everything. But there are only so many hours in the day, and we felt we could not do justice to both Star Wars and our Netflix projects. So we are regretfully stepping away.”
Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy added, “David Benioff and Dan Weiss are incredible storytellers. We hope to include them in the journey forward when they are able to step away from their busy schedule to focus on Star Wars.”
Weiss and Benioff’s first Star Wars film was scheduled to arrive December 26th, 2022, with the followups hitting theaters in 2024 and 2026. It’s unclear if those dates have changed in the wake of Benioff and Weiss’ departures.
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Star Wars‘ primary Skywalker trilogy is slated to wrap this winter with the release of The Rise of Skywalker, December 20th. Last Jedi writer-director Rian Johnson is reportedly also working on a new trilogy separate from the main one, although release dates for those films have yet to be announced.
Star Wars‘ parent company, Disney, also has two Star Wars TV shows planned for its streaming service, Disney+: The Mandalorian, which will center around a Boba Fett-style bounty hunter, and an Obi-Wan Kenobi series featuring Ewan McGregor reprising his role as the Jedi Master.