Disney+ unveiled two trailers for upcoming series during the Lucasfilm studio panel during star wars Celebration in Anaheim, Calif., on Thursday. The first was for Andora 12-episode prequel series set five years before the events of A thug, starring Diego Luna as Cassian Andor. The other was for willowa new series designed as a sequel to the cult classic 1988 fantasy film of the same name, set decades after the events of the original film.
The streaming platform has also confirmed that the highly anticipated Star Wars series Ahsoka will be presented in 2023, with a new series centered on children called Star Wars: Skeleton Crewsettled during The Mandalorianfrom the timeline and starring Jude Law. Also, the third season of The Mandalorian will premiere in February 2023, with the bounty hunter returning to Mandalore with Grogu, as well as Katee Sackhoff reprising her S2 role as Bo-Katan Kryze. (Odds she wants to get back the Darksaber that Mando won.)
We have not seen or heard of Andor after a behind-the-scenes teaser was revealed in December 2020 on Disney’s Investor Day. Andor has been described as a “taut, biting spy thriller”, starring Tony Gilroy, who co-wrote A thug, serving as showrunner. It begins with the Empire’s destruction of Cassian Andor’s homeworld and depicts the birth of the rebellion. According to Deadline Hollywood, Luna described Andor as “the journey of a migrant. This feeling of having to move is behind this story, which shapes you as a person. It defines you in many ways and what you are ready to do.
According to the official synopsis:
the Andor The series will explore a new perspective on the Star Wars galaxy, focusing on Cassian Andor’s journey to discover the difference he can make. The series tells the story of the budding rebellion against the Empire and how people and planets became involved. It is a time filled with danger, deception and intrigue where Cassian will embark on the path that is destined to transform him into a rebel hero.
The ensemble cast also includes Genevieve O’Reilly as Mon Mothma, a Republic senator who helped found the Rebel Alliance, as well as Forest Whitaker reprising his A thug role as Clone Wars veteran Saw Gerrera. Stellan Skarsgård and Adria Arjona co-star as resistance fighters who recruit Andor to the cause. Kyle Soller, Denise Gough, Fiona Shaw, Robert Emms and David Hayman have all been cast in undisclosed roles. Alan Tudyk was supposed to return as the reprogrammed Imperial droid K-2SO, but his appearance was scuttled during rewrites. The droid could meet Cassian in the second season, which is already in development and will lead directly to the events of A thug.
We know much less about willow television series, though fans of the film will be pleased to hear that Warwick Davis is returning as Nelwyn’s dwarf wizard Willow Ufgood. The original film was directed by Ron Howard and told the story of a child with a runic birthmark that the prophecy would bring about the downfall of the evil witch Queen Bavmorda. The child is floated on a raft of grass and found by a village of little people (the Nelwyns). Willow leads a party to find a community of Daikini (tall people) to raise the baby. Many magical adventures ensued.
The 1988 Oscar-nominated film debuted to mixed reviews, but did well at the box office, earning $137.6 million worldwide, although it never became the top producer. success that George Lucas had hoped for. Lucas and Davis had discussed the possibility of a series of sequels as far back as 2005, but Disney+ didn’t greenlight the project until October 2020, with Howard on board as executive producer.
The official synopsis describes the series as “an epic period fantasy series with a modern sensibility set in an enchanted land of breathtaking beauty” – so, very much in the same vein as the original film. He keeps on:
The story began with a budding magician from a village in Nelwyn and a little girl destined to unite kingdoms, who together helped destroy an evil queen and banish the forces of darkness. Now, in a magical world where brownies, wizards, trolls and other mystical creatures thrive, the adventure continues, as an unlikely band of heroes embark on a dangerous quest to places far beyond their home, where they must confront their inner demons and unite to save their world.
In addition to Davis, the case includes Erin Kellyman as a servant named Jade, who trains to be a warrior; Ruby Cruz as Kit, Jade’s friend, a princess who throws a party to save her twin brother; Ellie Bamber as a maid named Dove; and Amar Chadha-Patel as a thief named Boorman, who is promised his freedom in exchange for helping the party. Dempsey Bryk, Talisa Garcia, Ralph Ineson and Rosabell Laurenti Sellers have been cast in undisclosed roles.
The first two episodes of Andor will debut on Disney+ on August 31, 2022, with new episodes airing weekly thereafter. willow premieres on Disney+ on November 30, 2022.
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